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Coccinella is a free & open source whiteboard-sharing Jabber client. It's cross-platform and it's pretty nice. Here's how to use it.

Install & Setup of Coccinella

  1. Obtain a jabber account. (Google talk's server don't have the whiteboard capability enabled server-side.) Somehow the Coccinella new account creation seems to be broken. So, if you have gaim or pidgin installed, run through the following:
    1. accounts > add/edit account
    2. 'add account' button
    3. protocol: xmpp
    4. screenname: whatever you want
    5. domain:
    6. resource: doesn't matter, whatever you want
    7. hit 'register' button
  2. Download and install the Coccinella client. It's available here:
  3. Configure Coccinella to work with the account you just created:
    1. file > setup assistant (if it doesn't pop up automagically first run)
    2. server:
    3. username/pass: same as you created in step 1
    4. you should be done with the setup assistant, now just hit the login button, the default config should work.

Create a Whiteboard Session

  • Action > create chatroom

Pretty simple. :) Use the whiteboard button in the chatroom window to access the shared whiteboard.

You can also share a whiteboard one-on-one with somebody, but you can't invite others later.

Tips & Tricks & Ideas

  • One thing to note about the whiteboards is that, new users joining the conference get a blank whiteboard. So even though you can see your drawings from before they joined, they can't.
  • You can import PNG images (like, say mockups) into the whiteboard and write on top of them!
  • People who are not using the server AND who are not using Coccinella as their client will not be able to see or draw on the whiteboard but they can still chat.
  • the server supports whiteboarding. Google talk doesn't.