K09 Tip: Use an iPhone Remote with no Wifi network

Friday, February 13, 2009

So you just got Stage Hand or the Apple Keynote Remote for your fancy ithingy and you want to use it…but you’re stuck in a conference room with no Wifi. What now? The beauty of Mac OS X to the rescue. As far back as we can remember OS X has had the ability to make a computer act like a wifi base station. The one draw back to this is that there’s no way to tie this to a “Location” so you have to create a new network every time you do this Thankfully, it’s not all that hard to do.

Step One: Setup Airport.

If you don’t already have Airport turned on, or you don’t have the Airport menu icon in your menu bar, this is the place to start. Otherwise, you can skip this step. Open the System Preferences, then go to Network. We’re assuming you can’t get on any wifi networks at this point or you wouldn’t need this tutorial, so you should see a red or yellow dot next to the Airport item in the left side bar. Click on the Airport item in the side bar and if Airport is off, click the Turn Airport On button. Then check the box to “Show Airport status in the menu bar.”

 

Step Two: Create the Ad-Hoc Network

At this point, you’re ready to create your own wireless network. Click on the Airport icon in the menu bar and choose Create Network… It should look like this:

Airport Menu

Once you’ve chosen that, a little window will open allowing you to name your network. You also have the option to use a password. Here’s what it looks like:

Create Network

Type in the Name of your network and if you want to password the network, check the Require Password box (this keeps everyone else out of your network), then click Okay.

 

  • Tip: If you want to share lecture files with your group, don’t set a password for your network. You can then place files in the Public folder in your Home folder and others should be able to access them once they join your network (at least the mac users can. You could also turn on personal web sharing and serve up a fancy web page, though that’s a completely different tutorial for another time.

 

You’ve just created your own Wifi Network with your computer as the base unit. If you were successful, you should see an icon like this in your menu bar (though it probably won’t be green):

 

Step Three: Connect to your network with your iPhone or iPod Touch

On your touch device, tap on the Settings app. At this point you might want to set your iPhone in Airplane mode so that you don’t get interrupted by any phone calls in the middle of your presentation. Simply click the Airplane Mode slider to the On position. This will turn off the phone and wifi, but you will turn wifi back on, so don’t worry about that.

Next tap on the Wi-Fi option. When the panel appears click the Wi-Fi slider to the ON position to turn wifi back on. At this point you should see your new wifi network in the list.

Tap on your wifi network and if you chose to use a password, you’ll be prompted to enter it. Once connected you should see a check mark next to the network.

 

Step Four: Set up your app.

At this point, you might be using Apple’s Keynote Remote, or Wooji-Juice Stage Hand. Either way, you must first set up the host app, and then link to it with the touch app.

For Keynote Remote: In the case of the Apple remote, you simply visit the Keynote 09 prefs and choose Remote from the tool bar. With this screen open, switch to your device and launch the Keynote Remote app. If it doesn’t prompt you to connect, click the Settings button and choose New Keynote Link…

keynote link

You’ll be given a pass code:

pass code

Your device should then show up in the Keynote prefs window on your Mac. Click the Link button:

and enter the code that’s on your device screen. Your device will now be linked. We found we had to quit and relaunch the iPhone app before it saw our computer, but once we did that, it worked fine.

 

For Stage Hand: Launch Stage Hand on your device, then launch Stage Manager on your Mac. You should see your device in the Device list in Stage Manager.

Click on it and click the Pair button. You can now hide Stage Manager by hitting Command-H.

Your presentation (if it’s been saved in Keynote) will now show in Stage Hand. See the Wooji-Juice web site for more info on how to use Stage Hand. They’ve got a QuickStart and Support area that should get you through any issues.

NOTE: There is a new version of Stage Manager that works with Keynote 09 out now, so if you had issues, make sure you’ve got the newest version.