Join Jim Babbage for an in-depth discussion in this video Using Share My Screen, part of Fireworks CS4: Rapid Prototyping.
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If you have some initial ideas on a client project that you want to run by the client or maybe share with others in your team, sharing your screen might be an ideal way to do so. Let's say, for example, you've got a couple of rough layout sketches and before you get any further into the wireframe process, you want to share these two very different types of layouts with the client, get their feedback. You want to be able have that discussion in real time and where you're all looking at the same thing. The Share My Screen command lets you open up a mini ConnectNow meeting, where you can share your screen with two other participants, and it's really easy to use.
So all you'll do is go over to the File menu and choose Share My Screen. Now, you will need an Adobe ID in order to join or set up a meaning, but they're free and they're easy to get and you can see we've got an option right here to create it right off the bat. So I'm going to type in my ID and sign in. Once you're logged in and your ConnectNow window is displayed, as you can see here we've got quite a few different panels and so on, but the very first thing I'd want to do is send an email to my clients, so I can meet with them and discuss what's going on.
So I can choose Send Email Invitation Now and I can send off an email to my client Tom and I can just click Send. Once I've chosen to share my screen, I'll get a little prompt here that's telling me what my screen is going to look like and what others are going to see. I'll just click OK. Now I've got Fireworks in the background and my ConnectNow panel over on the right-hand side. Now if I just move around here I can see in this scroll bar, there is myself and my participant.
I've got a chat window here. I've got the spot to share notes. I can even open up a webcam or annotate a still version of the image while we're working. So I'm just going to pop into the chat window here, so I can chat with Tom. He can chat back with me just like a regular messenger type window, OK. We've got two different navigation layouts. I'll just move my little panel over a bit so I can get over to my Fireworks panel here and I'll just flip between the two different layouts, so Tom can see them.
So now that I've had a little chat with Tom, we've sort of discussed what we like, I can go down to the Shared Notes feature here. And this is a really neat feature, because these notes can be added to by either of us. They can be saved as an actual Word document after we're done. So, it's just going to pop in here. I'm going to type in 'concept 1 has nav at top, concept 2 has nav at side, Tom prefers nav at top.' So does Jim.
And Tom can even add in his own little comments in here as well. So it's not just a one-way street here. You've got the ability to literally collaborate at the same time, which is really a handy feature. I'll just finish off, 'Thanks Tom!' We're done. So I can, any time I want, stop the screen sharing. Before I do that though, I'm going to go ahead and save these notes. I'll go to my Shared Notes here. You see an option here to save as a DOC file.
Just click on that and I'm going to type in here bliss notes update.doc and save it away. There we go. I can stop sharing the screen and I end up back in my Connect meeting and Tom can leave any time he wants and I can just shut down the meeting. So there you go, another way to present ideas to a client in that really, early design or development stage. You don't really have any thing concrete to hand over to them yet, but you want to get some feedback on the directions you're going in.
This is a great way to do it. You don't have to fax them anything or email them anything. You can literally collaborate online, at the same time you can different mockups while you're in the same meeting and run ideas by the client or even by other people in your design team.
- Using screen-sharing applications for review and feedback on prototypes
- Emulating a Spry accordion panel with the Grid auto shape
- Storyboarding wireframes to make them more realistic
- Adding navigation and design variations to elicit comments
- Building multi-page mockups and adding interactivity
- Inserting rollover states in prototypes
- Using Flex skins in final mockup sets