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When working with Connect, it's always best to set your Pods up and your Layouts up ahead of time. Because you don't want your audience to have to watch you adjusting Pods on the fly. It's what I would call dead time, and it's an opportunity for people to leave the meeting, to go check e-mail, or do whatever else they might want to do instead of attend the meeting. You want to make sure that you're presenting the entire time, or at least you're engaging the entire time. Now, when you present with another author, it's not uncommon for that other author to decide they need to do something to their layout because they forgot to upload a file, or they didn't add a web link that they want, or maybe in responding to what's happening during the meeting, they want to make a change.
To do that, Connect offers something called Preparing Mode. And to use Preparing Mode, what you can do is enable it and go into a different Layout, and adjust it without affecting what the audience is seeing. To start, we're going to select Meeting, Switch To Prepare Mode. Note that you get some instructions, yYou're now in prepare mode, and changes made to the active pods will be reflected to the participants. And that's something that's important to realize. So for example, this pod is active. If I were to do something to it like remove this image, because it's in the active layout and people are seeing it, I would have that affect on things.
So that's just something that you want to keep in mind. But what you can do is select a different layout. So I am going to go all the way back to the Main Presentation Layout. In fact, I am going to go all the way back to the Sharing Layout, which is the first layout. And you can see that there is a yellow box around the entire layout. That's my hint that I am in Prepare Mode. And being in Prepare Mode, I can do whatever I want. So if I wanted to add a file Share Pod, I'll just select Share > Files, I'm going to Add a New File Share pod so as not to mess with the existing File Share pod.
And we will go ahead and add it. And then from here I could do whatever I want. I could rename it, I could upload something into it. Basically, in a Layout that doesn't have any active pods, I can do whatever it is that I would like to do. Preparing Mode is really convenient for those moments that you realize, "Oh, My goodness! My layout is not quite ready to go, or I need to make a change to the layout." Now the final thing that I want to say about Prepare Mode is that make sure that you end Prepare Mode, for yourself, before you start to speak, because I've done this a couple of times, actually, where I've gone in to Prepare Mode and I really didn't pay attention to the yellow box here, started presenting, and then my audience started to chat to say, "Hey, what's going on? I don't see of what he's talking about." Well, that's because I am in Prepare Mode.
So at the end of it, select End Prepare Mode. You're back to the main layout that's being shown to the audience. Change to your layout, continue your presentation, and you'll be good to go. So, when you need to customize after the fact, use Prepare mode. Just make sure that you turn Prepare Mode off after you're done using it.
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