Tech Trends and Tips

Productivity with TEAMS Continue to Increase

Productivity with TEAMS Continue to Increase

At the beginning of the pandemic, organizations leaned more on the current technology to collaborate. As shelter-in-place orders grew state to state the use Microsoft technology grew as well.  With the isolation of remote work growing the need for human connection became crucial to business development and the use of video conferencing for meetings increased substantially on Teams. It should be noted that Microsoft has continued to make enhancements and improvements:
  • Custom backgrounds allow you to replace your background in Teams meetings with a new office look anytime.  You can also upload your own custom backgrounds as well. Unique backgrounds have become a spirited competition within designDATA.
  • To make video calls more interactive, the raise hand feature will be available to everyone by the end of the year. It will let meeting participants indicate they have something to say by clicking on a hand-raise icon in the meeting control bar. Academic institutions will probably see this feature first as it rolls out.
  • Meeting organizers can now end a meeting for all participants with the click of the “end meeting “button in the control bar.
  • Later this year, Microsoft will roll-out background noise suppression while in a Teams meeting which uses technology to reduce distracting background noise such as loud typing or a barking dog.

How To Keep Uninvited Guests Out of Your Zoom Event

Zoom is a videotelephony and online chat services through a cloud-based peer-to-peer software platform and is used for teleconferencing, telecommuting, distance education, and social relations.  With most of the country working from home and using Zoom as well as other cloud-based communications there has been an uptick in hacking stories.  So, what are we to do?  Let’s look at a few ways we can practice Zoom Safety. At designDATA we believe the following best practices will help:

  • Create separate passwords for each virtual meeting;
  • Establish a Zoom waiting room for meeting participants
  • Lockdown the meeting once everyone invited to attend has joined
  • Do not publicly post-meeting links on social media or any other public forum

How to Share Your Screen with Teams

How to Share Your Screen with Teams

Screen sharing is a very useful tool that will help coworkers view content together.  Below I show how I shared my screen with my coworker Ricardo to discuss a project we were working on together. (click on pictures to enlarge)
  • Join or start your meeting with the option of video or voice by selecting the icon on the top right corner of the screen
  • Move your mouse to the bottom-middle of the screen during a meeting in Teams.
  • Choose the chat control options.
  • Click the third icon from the left, the icon with the square box and arrow.
  • You can then choose to share your screens, desktops, windows, or programs.

     

  • To stop sharing your screen click on the square icon with the X in the middle.

Article by Jose Vargas

Phishing Scams Aim to Exploit Coronavirus Fears

How To Keep Uninvited Guests Out of Your Zoom Event

Zoom is a videotelephony and online chat services through a cloud-based peer-to-peer software platform and is used for teleconferencing, telecommuting, distance education, and social relations.  With most of the country working from home and using Zoom as well as other cloud-based communications there has been an uptick in hacking stories.  So, what are we to do?  Let’s look at a few ways we can practice Zoom Safety. At designDATA we believe the following best practices will help:

  • Create separate passwords for each virtual meeting;
  • Establish a Zoom waiting room for meeting participants
  • Lockdown the meeting once everyone invited to attend has joined
  • Do not publicly post-meeting links on social media or any other public forum

Increase Productivity With macOS

Increase Productivity With macOS

Series Three 

Continuity Camera for Pictures and Scanning

Take a photo

Open a supported application on your Mac. Control-click or right-click in the document or window where you want the photo to appear Then select Import or insert from iPhone or iPad

(see below for requirements and supported applications)

You will then be prompted by your Mac to take a picture with your phone. It will look like this: 

When you take the photo with your phone, it will appear in your document, window or if you’re currently on your desktop, it will be on your desktop/

Scan a document

Open a supported application on your Mac. Control-click or right-click in the document or window where you want the scan to appear. Then select Import or insert from iPhone or iPad. 

Select Scan Documents

You will then be prompted by your Mac to take a picture with your phone. It will look like this: 

On your iOS device (iPhone or iPad), you will see a screen to scan. 

When you want to capture the text on the screen, press the circle button

The iOS device will then give you a preview and ask if you want to retake or Keep Scan. It will also give you an option to crop.

Crop to the text and then select Keep Scan. The preview on the iOS device will then disappear.

Your scan will now appear in PDF format on your desktop as shown:

The scanned document will be in high definition. Sample below:

Requirements:

Mac and iOS device have both wifi and Bluetooth turned on,
Mac and iOS device must be signed in to iCloud and with the same Apple ID that is using Two-Factor Authentication.
Your Mac is using macOS Mojave (or later), your iOS device is using iOS 12 or later.

Supported applications

O365 Suite, Finder, Keynote, Mail, Messages, Notes, Numbers, Pages, and Text Edit.

MAC Corner

By Shannan Sutherland

Manage Your Work Life Balance and Avoid Burnout

Internally at designDATA, we have been focused on staying connected and checking on each other.  Many times, we have heard staff say, “What day is it?” or “I feel like I work past 5 pm more often now than before.”  Are we showing greater loyalty by sending emails after 6 pm on a Friday because we work from home?  This is an interesting topic and can apply to most of us in this remote work environment.  The Harvard Business Review published some tips about this topic in the article, Avoid Burnout.  It’s important to manage your work-life balance, develop routines, and set boundaries.  It has been a challenge for all of us to some degree.

At designDATA, we share calendars to help with meeting scheduling and work management.  A new modification across the company is the use of unified colored categories in our Outlook calendars to categorize blocks of time.  As an example, block the time, “personal”(grey),  to remember to check on the kids who should be in Distance Learning, not playing FortNite.  Perhaps, you are scheduling team huddles or check-ins, use a specific color so at quick glance you could quantify how many reoccurring meetings you have for the week.  This tip should help avoid burnout and increase productivity with some planning and effort.  Plan your balance and set your boundaries.

Understanding Dual Band WiFi

Manage Your Work Life Balance and Avoid Burnout

Internally at designDATA, we have been focused on staying connected and checking on each other.  Many times, we have heard staff say, “What day is it?” or “I feel like I work past 5 pm more often now than before.”  Are we showing greater loyalty by sending emails after 6 pm on a Friday because we work from home?  This is an interesting topic and can apply to most of us in this remote work environment.  The Harvard Business Review published some tips about this topic in the article, Avoid Burnout.  It’s important to manage your work-life balance, develop routines, and set boundaries.  It has been a challenge for all of us to some degree.

At designDATA, we share calendars to help with meeting scheduling and work management.  A new modification across the company is the use of unified colored categories in our Outlook calendars to categorize blocks of time.  As an example, block the time, “personal”(grey),  to remember to check on the kids who should be in Distance Learning, not playing FortNite.  Perhaps, you are scheduling team huddles or check-ins, use a specific color so at quick glance you could quantify how many reoccurring meetings you have for the week.  This tip should help avoid burnout and increase productivity with some planning and effort.  Plan your balance and set your boundaries.

4 Ways to Have a Better Home Office

When we started this work-at-home journey, we were in unchartered territory.  Each week finding more efficient ways to boost your work productivity while balancing everything else.  We imagine that many stationed their computer in a common area of their home that made sense at the time. However, like many of us at designDATA, it’s time to “Change Things Up”.  Perhaps you have realized you need a desk monitor instead of that smaller laptop screen or your kitchen chair isn’t as ergonomic as first thought. This article in Association Now, Better Home Office, may help to improve productiveness. For other tips and tricks to improve productivity please see past articles by designDATA. Below are 4 that many have said helped so far:

  1. Taking Meeting Notes in Microsoft Teams
  2. E-Sign Solutions
  3. Using your iPad as a second display for your PC.
  4. Teams on Your Phone or Tablet

Using iPad as a Second Display on a PC

1. Please go to https://www.splashtop.com/wiredxdisplay
a. Download the XDisplay Agent for PC

2. On your iPad in the app store please download Splashtop Wired XDisplay app
a. The app is free

3. Connect your iPad via the USB cable that you use for charging to the PC you would like to add the additional display

4. Launch the XD display App on your iPad

5. You can rearrange the monitors and display preferences as you please

6. You now have a second display for your PC

Increase Productivity With macOS: Series Two

SplitView
It can be frustrating when you’re working from more than one application with one screen. It can be time-consuming to switch between PDF documents and Word or Excel when you need both for one task. Check out this feature called SplitView.

Chances are, you’re running OS X El Capitan or later so your mac should be compatible.

macOS Catalina:

To enter SplitView, find the Full-Screen button in the top left corner of the application. Click and hold. Two options will become available: tile window to the left of the screen or tile window to the right of the screen. Click which one you would prefer and then simply select the other app you want in the next window.

Other macOS versions:

Click and hold the full-screen button in the top left corner of the application
window. As you click and hold, the window will shrink so you can drag it to the
left side or the right side of your screen.
The app windows can be adjusted by hovering the cursor on the line separating
the two applications.
Exiting:
To exit SplitView, click the full-screen button on either application. This will allow
you to exit and the applications will separate.

Customize Your Volume Control

The audio is too loud in one setting but too low in another setting. It’s time to
customize the system volume control.

Hold down Shift+Option and then your volume key to adjust your system volume
by quarters.