Using Adobe Connect
Adobe Connect is used all the time for summer online
Comp 150. It is also available (not required) to suppliment
office hours in regular face-to-face classes. An alternative for
small groups is Google Hangouts or Skype.
case you need for each class
For our summer synchronous sessions a large screen or dual screens will
be handy, so you can both see and read a good sized copy of a what I am
distributing from my machine and work in your own environment at the
same time. My personal setup is a laptop, using its screen
and also attached to an external monitor. Such a setup is
not required at all, but it can definitely be handy.
- fast, reliable Internet access, best
ensured with a wired, not wireless connection
- a generally quiet place!
- earphones on the whole time you are in the meeting unless your seup satisfies the exception below under Sound and Noise
- microphone either built-in to the computer or plugged
- go to the class URL: http://connect.luc.edu/comp150
Details on Adobe Connect
The Adobe Connect website has lots of
help videos. The ones below are most important for the way we will
use the software. I make comments after most links, explaining extra
related material that was not included in the video.
- You will participate
in meetings. See
- You are likely to want to show an application on your
computer to others. It is important to see this in the
video, because participants cannot see the process
of the presenter setting this up in Adobe Connect! You can see
video does not show it, but the very first time you try to show your
screen to everyone, you get prompted to download a plug-in.
Accept it, and after 10-15 seconds, it should be done, and you can go
on with sharing your screen. Once you have the plug-in, this step
does not need to be repeated.
You have to stop sharing your screen
before someone else can start showing theirs. To quickly switch into
showing your screen, you should have the application you want to show
already running in the state you want to show, and then you can
quickly select it . If you have a large enough screen or two
screens, you can have your application running beside the
Adobe Connect window.
Do not assume everyone has as big a
screen as you. Make your application windows large enough to display
what you are showing, but not be enormous. Otherwise your winodw will
be squeezed to fit on the screen of others, and your text is likely to
be hard to read.
The top left of the share pod shows
whose computer is being displayed. If somebody else is controlling
the keyboard and mouse, that is also indicated in the upper left.
(We won't use that feature much, I expect.)
working with a partner remotely, Google Hangouts or Skype work in general.
This allows audio, chat, and screen sharing. Both require accounts and login.
For summer online
class, Comp 150 has a
special deal: You can use the same software used in class, Adobe
Connect. When you log into connect.luc.edu, you are all hosts for
a number of rooms. Pick one not occupied by another pair, and you
can work with your partner. We will go over accessing these rooms
in the first night's class.
Other Comments on Using Adobe Connect
Sound and Noise
You disrupt the meeting if there is much
background noise. This can be from being in a noisy place. Another big issue is feedback from your speakers.
You will need a microphone and and
speakers by the first class and a place to use your computer where you
can talk freely. It is also essential that your speakers do not
feed back into your microphone. This can always be avoided with
decent earphones. The earphones are not essential on a computer that
has an excellent feedback cancellation circuit: so what comes out of
the speakers does not get fed back into the microphone. Modern
Macs have such a circuit. Many Windows machines do not and then earphones are required. Have the proper equipment ready for your first class.
Finding a quiet place is very
important. It is most convenient to leave audio on for all
participants. If you are forced to be in a frequently noisy place,
then you can turn your audio off, but then it is annoying to switch
it every time you want to speak, and if you forget, we can’t hear
you or we get disrupted by a racket!
As soon as you enter a meeting, you see
the Meeting drop-down menu in the top left. Select the drop-down
option Audio Setup Wizard and follow it all the way though and
make sure your speakers and
microphone are functioning at a decent volume.
You get to control the overall speaker
volume on your machine. If everyone sounds loud, adjust your system
speaker volume. If one isolated participant sounds loud (or soft), ask that
person to adjust her or his microphone volume.
Adobe Connect has bugs. It freezes or
crashes occasionally. If that happens, quickly close the meeting window
reenter the meeting URL in your browser. It should not take long, and
you should not
miss much. Unfortunately this can also happen with the instructor, too. Be
The Notes Pod for Passing Code
I plan to have you all as presenters in my meetings,
which means we can all write in the same Notes pod. We could use
a Notes Pod for coding. Maybe we will occasionally, but the
editor is not designed for Python, and you cannot directly execute the
code. A more likely use for one Notes pod is this:
Someone who has been coding and maybe running code while others watched
and commented, can quickly trade off, by select all the code, copying
and then pasting into the Notes pod. Others can then select
all in the notes, copy, and paste into their own program editor.
Then another person can let everyone else watch as s/he adds the next
steps, with oral help from the rest of the class.... This
approach is certainly a possible one for pair programming in a meeting
of your own. We will practice.
- Take the steps discusssed above under noise to minimize
background noise. Background noise is cumulative. With a
full class it can be a real obstacle!
- Make a comment in the chat when you
- join the meeting
- leave the meeting
- step away from the meeting
- return to the meeting (after stepping away or after a crash)
- Get used to the sequence for showing your screen, so if we want
to switch and see your screen, the transition to what you want to show us
- Though a meeting with audio can convey more than pure
text/IM/Chat, still remember that without full visual feedback, you can
be more easily misinterpreted than in a face to face meeting.
Think about what you say and how to be constructive. But don't be shy!
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