Kollaborate: Using The Web To Connect People Remotely

As I may have mentioned before, one of the great things about the web is the fact that it gives you the opportunity to connect with people from many different places. No longer do you and a coworker have to be in the same room, looking at the same screen in order to discuss a project. The web has made it so that distance knows no boundaries for two or more people to connect or work together. It still blows my mind that there are developers out there that create apps and they haven’t even met face to face. But yet, they are able to crank out amazing apps by being able to communicate and collaborate through the web.

One of those apps that can help people connect and work together is one called Kollaborate and it does exactly what the name says. It is a web tool to help people collaborate with each other in real time, so that they can work together. I had the chance to take it for a spin and I was intrigued by its possibilities.

Getting Started

The whole goal of Kollaborate is that it would give a team of people the opportunity to work together or share things over the web and to be able to work in real time on something. When you first set up your account, you are going to want to invite others to your session so that you can start working with them. You can invite people by entering in their email and they will get a link to click on to join the session. When they join, you can see that they are there and now you can start working together.

Inviting others to collaborate with

Inviting others to collaborate with

Collaborating With Others

Once your team is in the session, this is where the real magic of Kollaborate happens. There are a variety of different ways to interact with each other and share items. When you first start, you will have a blank canvas to work with and one of the things you can do is add a document or image to work on. There are a variety of web services that you can pull in images, videos, or documents from. You can connect to them and then start sharing them with your team.

Some of the different web services that you can use

Some of the different web services that you can use

Secondly, you are giving a couple of editing tools to edit your canvas. There is a text tool that you can use as well as a drawing tool that can be used to edit your canvas or give feedback on a document or image. The font in the text tool can be changed, as well as the color, size and placement. The other feature worth noting is that when you draw something, someone can click on that drawing and make a comment on it.

Examples of some of the tools that you can use on your canvas

Examples of some of the tools that you can use on your canvas

When it comes to communicating with each other, Kollaborate gives you a variety of options for this. If you don’t want to interact verbally, there is a chat feature where you can “talk” with each other on a project. If you prefer hearing someone’s voice and interacting that way, there is a audio only feature or a video and audio option. I found that the video and audio option worked well in my testing and had no problems with it.

Chatting with others

Chatting with others

Makes Collaborating a Breeze

One of the things that I couldn’t help thinking of as I was using Kollaborate was how easy it was to use. In the field that I work in, people are somewhat hesitant to use new technology, but when I showed this to them and we started to play around with it, they could easily navigate their way and actually found it fun to use. One of the things that I could appreciate about this app is that they kept it simple. You didn’t get overwhelmed by too many features or it being too complicated to use. I felt like they gave you the right amount of features to use. I could upload a document or grab an image from a web source quickly and it was easy to interact with others.

One of the things that got me really excited about this app, is that it could be used in a variety of different settings. I cannot wait to use this in my classroom next year. When students are having trouble with something, this will be a great way to help them outside of class. This is a great tool for small businesses that need to work with each other or with others that aren’t necessarily in the same place. And since it is very easy to use, I think you could find that this could be used by more people than just tech professionals.

Final Thoughts

Even though I have been gushing about Kollaborate, I do know and understand that it isn’t for everyone. It definitely doesn’t have the pro features like some other collaboration apps have. There are apps like Go To Meeting or join.me that are a little more powerful and offer a few more key features. Kollaborate charges $9.99 and $29.99/month for their two different plans at the moment. I wish they had a cheaper plan, so they could tap into the mass market more or even education. Overall, it is a great tool to have and I think with the addition of a few more features, it can be a worthy competitor.


Summary

Work remotely with others, get, and give feedback on projects using the web with Kollaborate.

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