Main Screen | Whiteboard | Concept Map | Keys
Here are a few helpful tips for those new to
The Flashmeeting project.
If you want a more detailed explanation or technical help, see the main Help page
|The Really Quick - QuickStart Guide!
1. Either enter FM using your 'Sign In' email and password, or simply leave them blank and enter as a 'Guest' (with reduced features).
CHECK VIDEO & AUDIO
2. If your camera and microphone do not work here, they won't work in the meeting. You can open the test application to check them.
ENTER SCREEN NAME
3. Enter a screen name, tick the
terms box (click 'terms' to read them if you wish) and click 'ENTER'.
4. Click 'START BROADCASTING' to let people see and hear you.
Please remember ONLY ONE PERSON at a time can broadcast in FM!
5. Click 'STOP BROADCASTING' to end your broadcast.
JOIN THE QUEUE
6. If someone is already broadcasting, click 'JOIN QUEUE'
and you will begin broadcasting automatically when it is your turn.
|Designed to be easy
Our application runs in a normal web page, so you
simply need a modern web browser with the Flash 8 (or greater) plugin
If you have a properly installed web cam and microphone you will be able to
communicate with friends and colleagues anywhere in the world.
The password input field on this screen should
be filled in automatically in most circumstances and normally
you will not need to do anything on this screen. However, if
you have to enter
use the information given to you by the meeting organizer
To enter the meeting 'Signed In', enter your
account details into the input boxes. You can tick
one or both
so that you don't have to do this each time you enter a new meeting.
Make sure the 'Enter meeting Signed In' radio button is selected
and click the 'continue' button.
To enter as a Guest choose the 'Enter meeting as
a guest' radio button and click the continue button. You do not
need to enter any details for this.
If you want to register for a 'Sign In' account
click the 'Apply' button (this does not appear on the
you do not have a 'Sign In' account, you can visit
the meeting before the start time or use this link
and request an account. A password will be automatically emailed
to you, so you need to leave time for this to take place.
'Sign In' account does not allow
you to book meetings. See this
the differences between account types.
Enter the name you want to appear on your image
into the text field and click the ENTER button.
you did not Sign In to the meeting, click
the round button at the bottom left if you wish to 'Sign In'
to the meeting from this screen.
You must tick the box that confirms you agree to
the terms before you may enter.
||You will see displayed
either how long you have to wait for the meeting to start,
or how long to the meeting's end
if it has already begun. If you arrive early, 'Sign In' and
you can 'check' the tick box to enter the meeting automatically
when the start time is reached. Make sure you enter your
as this will not work if the name field is left blank.
If the meeting organizer has chosen
to record the meeting, you will see a 'notice' indicating that
this is the case.
Use this screen to check your camera and
microphone before entering the meeting!
Your web cam image should
appear in the box to the left and lights should appear on the
audio 'ladder' when you
If not, click
the 'Open Test Application' button to test your set-up,
or right on the application to open the Flash settings
Here you can select
microphone from the 'drop down' menu and make any adjustments
The 'standard' interface is described below. The 'presenter' interface contains the same controls and functions but with an integrated whiteboard, go here to see a screen shot.
1. The countdown
timer shows the time remaining to the end of the meeting. In
addition it shows a green 'flag'
with 5 minutes to go, orange with 3 minutes remaining and red
when the meeting enters its final minute. Each colour change
is accompanied by an audible warning.
2. The name of the
first person in the 'queue', and therefore the next person to
automatically begin broadcasting,
3. This is where
the main broadcast images appear. The broadcaster's name appears
at the bottom left. If the broadcaster
only has a microphone, no image will appear but their
audio will still be heard.
4. This area normally
shows the total number of people participating in the meeting,
however, if you 'rollover'
with the mouse their name will appear here. This is useful
images are reduced in size because of the increasing number
5. Private text
chat: If you are 'Signed In', by clicking on a thumbnail or list
item you can enlarge the person's image.
Clicking the 'X' in the top corner of the image will close it. If both you and
they are 'Signed In', clicking the 'T' will open a private text chat between
the two of you.
If you receive a private text message, an envelope appears on the sender's thumbnail
to indicate a new message. Click the thumbnail to read it. In addition, an envelope
appears above the image list, in case the thumbnail has been scrolled out of
view. Clicking on this envelope shows a list of people from which you have new
You can select one from the list to view their message.
6. Use the 'boards', 'names'
and 'images' tabs to switch between the names and images views and the whiteboard and concept map.
The images tab: shows the meeting's participants as a list
of image 'thumbnails' with their name shown at the top
they join the broadcast queue a hand appears on their
picture with the queue position on it. Also the broadcaster's
border turns green. The images reduce in size as more
The names tab: lists participants as a text list. This
is useful for slow internet connections and/or computers.
The boards tab: opens the whiteboard to create and share images, and the concept map to create and share 'maps'. Switch between them using the 'side tabs' that appear.
audio level from your microphone appears here as coloured bars.
Green coloured bars, with the occasional
red bar, should
be fine. If you get the red bar at the top continuously
you probably sound distorted to listeners. Use the
in the 'prefs'
tab to open a panel allowing you to adjust the sound
8. If you just have
to say something and can't wait for a turn in the queue, clicking
this button will
the person currently broadcasting with you!
If you wish to return them after you have spoken
you can Ctrl+click (Cmd+Click Macs) their image or
list, to 'force'
them back to broadcasting. This 'technique' is only
possible for the current broadcaster who has also
9. If you click
on the broadcast button (1),
and no one is already 'broadcasting' you will broadcast
the meeting until you click the button again to
stop. The button
turns green when you are broadcasting (2).
However, if someone else is broadcasting the button
shows the length of the queue within brackets (3).
If you click the button
to join the
'queue' you will have to wait your turn to speak.
The button then displays your position in the
queue to the left of the brackets (4).
If you click
the button again you will leave the queue.
The first person in the queue automatically starts
broadcasting when the current speaker stops, therefore there
is no need to press the broadcast button if you are in the queue.
The broadcast button can also be controlled by pressing the 'Page
Up' or 'Page Down' key.
these tabs to switch between the interface's lower windows:
This tab shows the room title and description and the version
of the application. Clicking on the logo opens a web page if you need help or instructions. Your 'Sign In' status
is also shown. Click the round button to access the 'Sign
This tab allows you to text chat to the people in the meeting.
Type your text into the input text field at the bottom and
click the Send button (you can also press the Enter key).
the scroll buttons to scroll through the text. Alt+click on a scroll button to 'jump' to the top or bottom of the text chat. Click the 'scroll bar' to make the text chat 'jump' to that position.
Use the small
square buttons to alter the size of the text.
Click the 'Pin'
button to stop the text scrolling when a new message is received, if you are reading an important message that is not near the base of the chat.
If a message is received when you are looking at another tab,
the chat tab highlights in green.
icons work the same way as on the 'Vote' tab, but save you swapping tabs. They still appear on your thumbnail, not in the text chat.
Click the Chat tab again to enlarge the text chat area.
This tab allows you to share a URL during the meeting (you will
only see the shared URL if your browser allows popup windows).
If you are broadcasting, clicking a Send button (1) open's
the URL that is in the line of text to the right of it (2),
in a window on everyone's computer. The URL also appears at the
of everyone's screen (3).
want to temporarily keep a URL that appears in the lower text
field, click the Add button (4) to
move it to your URL 'history' area (5).
Subsequently clicking on this line's 'Send' button will 'share'
the URL with everyone.
If you want to add a new URL to your 'history' area click the
New button (6). This opens the
URL entry panel. Type or paste each URL on a separate line, click
the done button and each URL will appear as a separate entry
in your history area (5).
If you want to edit a URL
click its edit button (8).
Click the edit button again when you are finished.
Click the Del button (9) to
delete a URL line you no longer want to keep.
URL's will be lost when you leave the meeting, so 'copy' a
URL if you want to keep it.
Use the scroll buttons to scroll through the URL's in your
Note that people will only see the
web page that is opened by the URL they are sent. If you click
on a link on that page,
or point at something with your mouse it will not be shared.
You must explain or describe your subsequent actions so that
others can follow them.
The 'vote' tab allows people in a meeting to vote on a topic.
Click on the small square buttons to choose between 'Yes',
'No' or 'Abstain' to have your vote counted. A round 'marker'
indicating the way you voted. Click on the button again to
remove your vote, or on another button to change your vote.
Only the person who is broadcasting can 'clear' all the votes.
The 'Emoticons' can be used at any time, to display one of five
indicators on your thumbnail. These can be used to unobtrusively
indicate your 'feeling' or 'state' to everyone at a particular
point of the meeting. Click an icon to display or remove an Emoticon.
All automatically disappear after about 10 seconds except the
'time' Emoticon which remains until switched off again.
The 'xtra' tab contains buttons that function depending on your 'Sign In' status
and the type of meeting.
Manage Files: Click this button to upload, download or delete files relating
to this meeting. This is a good way of sharing images or documents related
to the meeting.
Boards: Click this button to open the shared whiteboard and concept map for this meeting.
See them described in detail below.
My Events: Click this button to open a new browser window listing your events.
This tab gives you access to both the application and the Flash
Flash Player Settings: Clicking a button here will open a panel
allowing you to set Flash Player options, including choosing
and adjusting your camera and microphone.
Connections Settings: Choose between High and Low quality. Use
Low if you are on a slow connection or using a slow computer.
Resize Thumbnails: Choose Yes if you want the 'thumbnail' images
of the people in the meeting to reduce in size when more than
four or six have joined.
Open URLs: When the broadcaster 'shares' a URL do you want it
to appear in a browser window. Choose Yes if you do (this feature
only works if your browser allows popup windows). Note the URL
address will still appear in the lower text field of the 'your
Button Rollovers: When the box is ticked you will see a description
appear at the top of the interface about the button the mouse
Text Chat History: Clear your text chat history window. This
only clears it on your machine but may save you a lot of scrolling!
Port Connection: When you first use the application it searches
for a valid port and then stores it to save time the next time
you enter a meeting. Click the Clear button to clear the saved
port and it will check again for valid ports next time
Warning Sounds: Tick the box if you want to hear the warning
sounds at the end of the meeting. You can also set the volume
by choosing between 100, 50 and 25 percent.
When the meeting reaches its
end the 'final screen' appears. Unless the meeting is being
recorded none of the information, video or text etc. is kept.
Keep an eye on the countdown timer if you want to 'save'
any meeting details.
Click the 'go to' button to go to the main web page, or if the meeting was recorded click the 'click' button to go the meeting page containing a link to the replay, or if you have finished close the browser window.
If you wish to leave the meeting before the end, simply close the browser window.
People who 'Sign In' to a meeting can create
content on the whiteboard. Everybody sees and has access to the
contents of the whiteboard
although 'Guests' can only view it.
The controls are situated at the bottom of the
window, with the whiteboard above.
Described from left to right:
1. Personal Flag: Drag this to the whiteboard to display a 'flag' pin bearing the first five letters of your screen name.
2. Pins: To create one of the three types of 'pin',
simply drag one onto the whiteboard area. Click and drag it
3. Freehand Drawing : Open the freehand drawing window to draw lines with your mouse. Your drawing will not be seen by others until you press the Send button. Your 'ink' supply will diminish as you draw. It will refresh after you press the Send button.
Key to image below - from left to right: Select a line thickness from 1 to 6; Select a colour; Cancel and return to the whiteboard; Clear all of the drawing; Undo last line drawn (repeat to delete multiple lines); Send the drawing to the whiteboard to be seen by all.
4. Text: You can create text 'boxes' with or without
a coloured background by dragging either one of the two 'A' boxes onto the whiteboard. Select the text and type your own content into the newly created 'box'. If you wish to change to a different text size click on
the button below the two 'A' boxes, before you drag one onto the whiteboard.
When a text box that is already on the whiteboard is 'selected', you can drag the grey arrow that appears to the top left of it when you want to reposition it, or click on the 'plus' or 'minus' buttons to change its size.
If you have been creating or editing text you must deselect it to send your changes to everyone else. Click on the 'background' or another object, its arrow and size buttons will disappear to confirm its de-selection.
5. Shapes: Click on a shape button once then click on
the whiteboard and drag the mouse to create the size of the shape
you have chosen and release the mouse button. If you want to create more than
one of the same shape, double click a shape button (it will have
a bold border) and you will continue to draw that shape until
you click a shape button again. Hold the shift key down as you draw to constrain the shape to a circle or square.
Click the vertical button to the right of
the shape buttons to choose a line thickness for the shapes.
Pallet: Click on a colour button to change the colour of a selected
item, or subsequent items that you create.
7. Personal Colour: Click on this colour button to change the colour back to your 'unique' colour, given to you when you join the meeting.
8. Delete Button: Click on this button to display a menu containing two buttons:
Selected: Delete the 'selected' item (note
that you can also
delete most items by dragging them to the grey background
of the control area at the bottom and releasing the mouse).
All/Type: Open a panel with a set of buttons that allow you
to delete all objects, or certain types of objects, at once.
9. Menu Button: Click on this button to display the main menu containing a number of buttons:
this button to open the Snapshot panel. Here you can either save
a 'Snapshot' of the whiteboard in its current state (you
can rename its title if you wish), or load a previously saved
Snapshot. Snapshots are automatically saved periodically if the
is altered. You can choose whether to list these 'automatic' Snapshots or not.
Load Image: Click
the image button to choose a jpg image file from your computer
to load on to the whiteboard. This always appears beneath other
objects and text that are on the whiteboard at the same time. Only one background image can be loaded at
any one time. We recommend 800x600 pixels as the maximum size
a Presentation List of pre-saved slides. Navigate through the slides
using the floating pallet that appears when you load a 'List'. Click on the title of an individual
slide to load it into the
also use the arrow buttons (or the arrows on the keyboard) to
navigate through the slides. Click the minimize button at the top right of the
pallet to expand or minimize it, you can also drag it around
the whiteboard to a more convenient position. Click the 'T' button next to a title to preview
a small 'thumbnail' of the slide that only you will see. For some tips on creating Presentation Lists click here.
Mix Colour: If
you want a different colour to one shown on the colour pallet (6),
click this button to open a colour mixing panel. Move the sliders until
you have the colour you want. Click on one of the six boxes to
the right of the sliders if you wish to save the colour to use again in the meeting. Click on a box with a saved colour already in it to choose the colour again. If you
a previously saved colour in it, the new colour replaces it.
Lock: You can lock 'types' of objects into
position so that you do not inadvertently move them when drawing
or moving other objects on top
them. Note that this only works locally
on your computer. Other people
can still move them.
Example of the 'Presentation Lists' pallet
People who 'Sign In' to a meeting can create
content on the concept map. Everybody sees and has access to the
contents of the map
although 'Guests' can only view it.
The controls are situated at the bottom of the
window, with the map above.
Described from left to right:
1. Create a node: Click this button to create a new node on the concept map, just above the button itself.
2. Delete: Click this button to display a popup menu. This contains a button that will delete everything displayed on the concept map at that point.
3. Menu: Click this button to display a popup menu. This contains a button that will open the 'mapshot' save and load screen. To save everything on the map as a 'mapshot', enter a title and click the save button. To load a mapshot (deleting everything on the map at that time), choose one from the list and click the load button.
Interface Details: Drawing on the concept map and swapping between the screens.
1. Broadcast: When someone is broadcasting a small thumbnail image appears here.
2. Text chat tab: You can use this to send a text message and read the last three messages sent when using the 'boards'. Click the arrow buttons to open and hide the text chat window. Click the tint button to make the text chat window translucent. Drag on the tab to move it up and down the screen. An indicator appears on the tab if a text message is received and you do not have the text chat window open.
3. Private message indicator: If a private text message is received while you have either 'board' open an indicator appears here.
4. Broadcast button: This behaves exactly like the broadcast button on the main FM interface.
5. View tabs: Choose between viewing the main interface, showing either people's thumbnails or names, or viewing the 'boards' (the Whiteboard and Concept Map).
6. Board tab buttons: Use these buttons to view either the whiteboard or concept map. An indicator appears at the top of either button if a change occurs and you are not looking at that 'board'.
7. Node: Click on and drag a node to move it. Click in its text box to add text. Click on the small round button to change its type. When rolled over three buttons appear. Click the left button to delete the node. Click and drag the right button to enlarge or reduce its size. Click and drag the middle button to another node to link them with a line.
8. Line: Click on a line to open a menu that provides options to alter the line. For example, change arrowheads, change colour, or add a label. Select the label text to change it.
To create a map before the meeting: You can also create concept maps before the meeting begins. Go to the MapMaker page to create one. When you are happy with it, upload it using the link provided on the 'meeting page' for the FM in which you wish to use it.
See the Commands page for the details of the keyboard and 'command