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Tuesday, 28 October 2014

How to change which account I am joining a Hangout from

I don't know about you , but I often get invites to join a Hangout to the wrong account or Google+ page and it can be really frustrating trying to work out how to join it from the correct page/profile?

Well, Google have given you the answer to this preciously frustrating challenge.

When you click a Hangout on Air invite and the Hangout window opens - you have the opportunity to change which profile or page you join the hangout as.


In the image above - you can see the join button and under that it tells you who you are joining the hangout as.  BUT - if you are not in the right profile or page then you can click the "Switch accounts" link at the bottom of this window and change to the correct one without having to go back and work out how to get in as the correct person/page.




Wednesday, 24 September 2014

How to Create a pdf from a Google doc and retain the hyperlinks

Often when you create a Google Doc - you will create a table of contents and include hyperlinks in it too.

The problem is that if you create your doc via Google docs and print or save it as a pdf - Sometimes the hyperlinks are lost in the final pdf file..... (This especially applies to your clickable table of contents).

So what can you do to retain any lost hyperlinks and your clickable table of contents?

It does take a few more steps but is very simple to do:

1. Create your Google doc and add your hyperlinks and clickable table of contents


2. Download the doc as a .odt document



3. Upload your doc to http://www.freepdfconvert.com/  (there is a free and a paid for option)



4. Download the newly created (for free) pdf doc to your computer
5. Share the pdf with everyone (or upload the pdf to Google drive and share the links direct)


It does take a few extra steps but is very fast and simple and solves the problem of Google docs not retaining their hyperlinks when saved as a pdf direct from Drive.




Saturday, 20 September 2014

Why am I seeing a red circle or camera icon in my Chrome toolbar?

You may have recently noticed a red circle or grey video icon in your Chrome toolbar and are wondering what it is and why it is there?



This is the quite new and arrived when Hangouts On Air were made available to people using chrome, without them needing to download the voice and video plugin


  • The red circle means that your browser tab is using your webcam and audio and that you are in a Hangout On Air
  • The video icon means you have allowed the website you are currently visiting to access to your webcam and audio but it may not be using them right now


You can find out more about these icons and also what to do if you originally denied access through your Chrome browser to your webcam and audio so that your browser is set to always allow Google Hangouts to access your webcam and video in the future, below.


Taken directly from:  https://support.google.com/hangouts/answer/3110347

  1. When you try to start a video call for the first time, you’ll see a message underneath the address bar asking for permission to access your computer’s mic and camera.
  2. Click Allow. You only need to do this once. The Chrome browser will remember your choice for future Hangouts.
    • Red circle Red circle in the address bar of the Chrome browser: This means the browser's tab is using your mic and camera. It also means that you’re in a Hangouts video call without having the plugin downloaded to your computer.
    • Video camera icon Video camera in Chrome in the address bar of the Chrome browser: This means that you’ve allowed the website you're on to use your camera and mic, but it may not actually be using it.
If you deny access the first time but want to allow it later, you can change the setting during a video call:
  1. In the video call, go to the address bar in the Chrome browser.
  2. Click the camera icon with the X Video camera with X in Chromeon it.
  3. Click “Always allow plus.google.com to access your camera and microphone.”
  4. Click Done.
  5. Click Reload.

Can Non Google+ Users Join A Hangout On-Air

Initially when Google hangouts On Air launched, everyone who wanted to participate needed a Google+ profile or page to be able to hop into a live Hangout room.

Now though, anyone can join a Hangout On Air (inside the film-strip live on webcam and audio) and participate in the discussion, as long as they have a Google account https://accounts.google.com/

This means that non Google+ users are now able to join you inside your live Hangout On Air ...



Why is this important?  Because it will make it much simpler for people who have never been on a Hangout and those who do not (yet) have a Google+ account to join you on a hangout On Air.

Consider that you host live TV shows and bring on guests from around the world.  Previously you had to make sure they had a Google+ profile/page before you could invite them to join you on the Live broadcast...

Now, as long as they have a Google Account - they can join you with no need to setup a Google+ account (of course they will want to once they get the power of Hangouts and Google+)

This is a screen shot taken straight from Googles Help page Here: https://support.google.com/hangouts/answer/3110347


There's lots more information on the help page and the most important things to keep in mind are:


  • Anyone that has a Google account can join you in a hangout On Air 
  • To start a hangout On Air you will need a Google+ profile & YouTube channel


So what happens when you invite someone from outside Google+ to join you inside a Hangout On Air?

Here are the steps and what they will see:

Simply start your hangout and copy/paste the hangout url for them to click and join you.

When they click it, if they are not currently logged into the Google account, they will be prompted to login.

Once logged in a prompt to allow hangouts to use their webcam and audio is show:


After allowing access to their webcam and mic they will be taken to the Hangout room to join it the same as they would if they were joining you from a Google+ account



Here's the kicker!  If you simply gave them the URL from inside the hangout they will have gone through all those steps only to find out that they are NOT allowed to join the Hangout room.  Owch!


So what do you do?  

The key to making sure this does not happen, is you MUST invite them to the hangout from inside the hangout room, before they will be able to join (Google really have considered this haven't they, after all do you want people sharing your Hangout room URLs with anyone and people being able to just hop into your Hangout without an invite??)

When you send the invite the only difference in inviting people without a Google+ account to those with one, is that where you would normally add their name, you add their email address.  

Now you can either let them find the invite in their inbox and click the link OR you can send them the Hangout room URL and they will follow the steps above and be able to join you.


So is there any point of having a G+ account to use Hangouts in the future?

Yes absolutely there is - (we all know the benefits of Google+) but for the person joining you in the Hangout the difference between joining a Hangout with and without a Google+ account is what they can do and see when they are inside the Hangout room.

  • Non Google+ users will only have the screenshare and the chat apps available 
  • No option to add any other apps for the non G+ user
  • No option to start their own Hangout On Air without a Google+ account


This new opportunity is though, going to open up Google Hangouts in a big way, especially for first time or occasional users who want to join but not create their own Hangouts On Air, and it simplifies everything for the host of the Hangout too, as you no longer need to tell people they MUST have a Google+ profile to join a hangout on air.......


If you would like to learn more about using hangouts on air and all the different ways they can help you to raise your visibility, engage and build strong relationships and take your business to the next level.  Come and join us as a Hangout Professional

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Creating Polls on Google+

Have you ever wanted to create a poll on Google+ and get stuck because you really don't want to have to create a Google form or similar to get people's responses?



Why not use a +1 post for your polls?

How?

1. create your post as the question and include instructions for people to +1 their preferred option through the comments
2. Add a comment for each possible answer
3. Switch off comments

There you go - all done your poll is ready to go.

Here is an example of a post I created to show you a poll post in action.



Monday, 1 September 2014

See Real Time News on Google

Did you know that you can not only view the news on Google and choose what news to view, but that you can also see news in real-time too?



Below is the information taken straight from the Google Support Page:

Realtime coverage page

News stories are constantly changing and developing. To get the most up-to-the-minute information on the stories that matter to you, you can visit the Google News realtime coverage page. The realtime coverage page includes the most recent content from the publications included in Google News. If you're a signed in Google+ user viewing Google News, you may also see the latest relevant posts from the Google+ community.
To visit the realtime coverage page of a story that interests you, click near the article to open the expandable story box on the Google News homepage. When this story expands, simply click on the blue See realtime coverage button to discover the latest news as it happens.
In the side column, you can see a discussion stream from Google+. We show content from Google+ to any signed in user who has set up a profile new window. Read about how you can see Google+ content in Google News.

To access Google news simply go to http://news.google.com


How to use cover flow on a mac for your Hangout On Air presentations

Sometimes you just want to share images straight from a folder on your mac as a slideshow without having to create a presentation or pdf document to screen share during a hangout On Air....




Well the great news is, that you can do this quickly and easily in a way that doesn't have to involve you spending time turning your images into a powerpoint presentation or Google docs slide show - it can be done very quickly using the images you already have stored on your mac and one of the simple in-built options available, called cover flow.

Don't know how to use cover-flow?  Take a peek at the short video below, to find out .....




Note:  In my video, the images I was sharing were small screencapture images, you can of course use much larger and brighter images for your slideshow and even create memes and instructional images too.

Please do share if you think this video will be helpful to others ...