Navigating the chat room
First things first! You can access the chat room from the tool bar located at the top of the forums. You have the option to "Enter Chat Room" which will open the chat room in your browser. You can "Enter Chat Room (Float)" which will open the room in a separate browser and in an undocked window, much like a pop-up (best viewing). There is no need to enter your user name and password since your are already logged into the forums. You also have the ability to see who is currently in the chat room. There can be some lag in update times and depends on the last time you refreshed your browser, as to how accurate the number of users are in the room and who is in the room when you look.
Our chat room is pretty easy to get around in if you just explore a little. But we thought we would throw in a little help to get you started. We've captured a few screen shots to show you around the room.
Before you get started, there's a couple of things you need to do. You must allow JAVA script to be executed from beesource.com and sigmachat.com. Without it, you can't access the room. Secondly, you need to allow pop-ups for beesource. Links can be posted in the chat room and if you don't allow pop-ups one of two things will happen. You will be disconnected from the room or the links will not open for you when you click them.
Basically that's all there is that's required for our chat room. You may have other problems related to other software you have on your machines or as a result of your ISP's. But we can't address those types of issues in general and we will try to assist those that may have problems on a case by case basis.
So lets go ahead and get started!
When you connect to the room, by default you will enter the room named "The Hive". Here you see the greeting that you receive once you've successfully connected.
Here you see the room as it should appear in you browser window. You'll notice the chat area displaying messages logged with the user name to the left of each message.
The user list on the right where you will see all members that are connected to the room as well as the other rooms available. Just double click the room to enter. (The Hive is the general chat room, the Swarm is used for scheduled meetings or guest speakers. The For Sale room is used for sales only by those having ads in the For Sale forum on the board.)
You see your status just above the user list. More on that later.
And the control icons at the bottom of the page just above the message field where you will enter your message. To the right of that is the send button used to send your message. You may also simply use your enter key on the keyboard to send your message.
The icons at the bottom of the page are used for the following from left to right:
First is the color pallet for choosing your font color.
Second is used for bold text.
Third is used for italicized text.
Forth is used for underlined text.
Fifth will pop up a dialog box with a choice of emoticons that can be added to your message.
Sixth will also pop up a dialog box for sounds which can be used.
Seventh and Eighth icons are use to increase or decrease your viewing font size.
The Ninth is used to clear the chat screen of all messages.
The Tenth is used to turn on and off the sound for the room.
Eleven is used to float or dock you chat window in your browser window. Floating allows a better view of the chat rooms and can be used independently of the browser window. (Keep in mind however, if the parent browser window is closed you will be disconnected from the chat room.)
The Twelfth is a help button and can give you more details on chat functions. Be aware however, not all functions are available to all users.
(Update!) We have added Avatars to the chat room. If you wish to use and view them, right click on the chat screen and check the "Use Avatars" option.
And finally the last is used to sign out of the chat room. Upon exit, you will be sent back to the forums.
If you wish to leave the chat room but not sign off. You can change your status to "away" so the others in the room know that you are not being attentive to the chat. Just above the user list on the right, you will use the drop down menu to select your status. When in the away status, there will be an icon beside your name in the user list that appears as an hour glass.
You can also right click in the chat field and get to the some of the controls as an alternative to using the icons at the bottom of the page.
And finally, you can right click any of the users names in the user list and get a list box for commands. The upper half of the list is available to all users. While the second half of the list is reserved for administrators.
With exception to the first item on the list. All of the commands pertain to functions related to their account on the forums. The first on the list "Instant Message" will open up a second and smaller chat window with the user you have selected so that you can talk with them independently of the other users in the chat room(s) (double clicking the user name will also open a Instant Message window to the user). You are allowed to have multiple Instant Message windows open at one time. The View Profile command will take you to the members profile on the forums. You can view their posts, email them (if they have their account set up to receive emails from the board) and send them a Private Message, all are forum functions.
This should cover just about everything that you will be using in the chat room. If you do see anything that you might have a question about. Simply ask one of the moderators.
Please do stop in and visit!! We welcome any and all that will come!!