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This past week I had the need to meet with at least four people to show them files that were either digital or web browser related; with at least one of them, I was unsure of the computer platform they would were on. With all of them, I wanted to interact with them verbally and visually. And I also had no desire to travel outside of the comforts of my home.

 

Why the desire to stay put? Well, for several reasons. 

 

  • For one: there’s travel time. There is construction everywhere you turn and with construction comes traffic delays. Time is money and time is just time. I’d rather be doing something else, constructive, or heaven forbid, fun.
     
  • For two: There’s cost and gas consumption. I try my best to be economical and green. With travel time/traffic delays/cost of gas/idling of car, I am accomplishing neither of these objectives.
     
  • For three: with present technology, there is no need to travel beyond the distance of my fingertips to my laptop.

With the need to review a project with a client and not having to worry about what computer platform they were on, my online program of choice was Adobe ConnectNow.

 

Right from within the app I was using, InDesign, I could launch a command, File > Share My Screen, to enact a free service Adobe ConnectNow.

 

 

Adobe ConnectNow is a free service that allows you to have a meeting room with up to two other guests. In this meeting room, I can share the running app with my guests, so that they can see what I see. To get a full breath of Adobe ConnectNow click here.

 

There are other similar paid “Connect” services from Adobe, like Adobe Connect Pro, see here, with added features, but for this purpose, the free Adobe ConnectNow fit the bill. I could show and review areas of concern to the client without either of us encumbered by travel. 

 

The client thought this was so cool.

Cool points are always good when working with a client.

 

For the other meetings, I was lucky that we all had Macs. The app of choice at this point was iChat. Within iChat is also a Share My Screen command, to share your screen with a Buddy on your Buddy list.

 

 

With iChat Share My Screen, you can even allow your Buddy to take control of your desktop. I've found this to be a great feature for troubleshooting a remote computer for lost or troubled files.

 

These two programs can be indispensable for saving time, effort and money when it comes to getting things done. If you haven’t tried them, you should take both for a whirl, then undoubtedly, you may find that you fire them up on a regular basis.

 

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  • calvin

    Great article. These will be a handy tools for me to use with customers that don’t require the personal touch. Might also be handy to leave “on” with a office computer to connect back to for information sometimes.

    My only question is what is Adobe wanting form me as a user to use “connect now” it costs them money to provide this service?

    Thanks for the tips.

  • Cal,
    Unlike a lot of “Free” promotions where you are required to give up all information, including the name of your first born, an Acrobat.com account (required for the Adobe ConnectNow service) asks for none of that. I’ve had this account for years and have seen no unwanted side-effects, like spam or junk mail.

  • Jack

    Adobe is hoping you’l move up from the free service to the paid version, which allows for many more participants. If you can get by with the 3 user limit though, it’s great.