What is this “Toast” thing anyway?

Toast, as the OC team calls it, is a notification that appears near your desktop’s systray (i.e. the thing with the clock in it). Toast’s primary goal is to let a user know that there is an incoming communication request and to give as much context about the request as possible. Toast is divided up into two regions:

  • Contextual information:
    • Caller Identity
    • Conversation Topic
    • Invitation modality
  • Actions

What does context mean for the me, the user?

Context is everything! The more information you have about the caller and the invitation, the better you can utilize your time. After all, it might be Bill Gates calling via video conference about your annual raise. Bet you’d want to take that call.

Let’s start with the “Caller Identity” region.

 Info that might be seen in this region includes:

  • Name
  • Company
  • Job title

How do I make the most of the Caller Identity region?

Posting your information on the global directory helps identify you by displaying useful info such as your name, your phone number, the location associated with the phone number and your job title. Even if you don’t recognize the name of a caller, you can still see whether he/she is a co-worker or partner, a fellow team member or a manager from another company.

Next, let’s take a look at the “Conversation Topic” region.

Info that might be seen in this region includes:

  • Subject line (populated by the sender of the invitation)
  • First line of instant message
  • Phone number

How do I make the most of the Conversation Topic region?

When you want people to take your conversation seriously, try using the subject line before initiating the invitation. That way the recipient will know what you really want to talk about. Adding a subject line helps scope the nature of your call, especially if this is an on-going conversation from a previous session. If this is in fact a brand new conversation, OC will auto-populate this line with either:

  • IM only: First instant message of the conversation
  • Voice only: Phone number
  • Default: Incoming <modality> call

Finally, let’s check out the “Invitation Modality” region.

Modality is the type of invitation you are receiving, i.e.:

  • Instant message (IM) / File transfer
  • Voice/Video
  • Conference

This helps a recipient to know whether or not the incoming invitation is of an appropriate method. For example: If you’re conducting a meeting, you might accept IMs but not video sessions.

How do I make the most of the Invitation Modality region?

Just start your conversation by any modality. OC will take of the rest.

I just received a toast. What can I do with it?

Toast is a great way to triage your communication and can help you keep on top of news in a snap. Try out some of these actions today!

Vivian Lim
Program Manager

Published Friday, April 25, 2008 1:27 PM by octeam
Filed Under: Tools and Addins