WriteOnline Frequently Asked Questions

Using on and offline

Can I use WriteOnline without an Internet connection?
WriteOnline is now an installed product with the option of using it online as an additional subscription.

What happens if my Internet connection goes down while I am using the subscribed online version?
You can carry on using the program as normal. The only difference is that you won't be able to open or save files to your online folders. Instead, you can save files to your local computer.

Where should I save my documents?
We recommend that you save your documents in your online folders so that you can access them from anywhere. You can also save to your local computer.

Why would I want to use the installed version?
Use the installed version if any of the following applies to you:

  • You have no Internet connection or you have limited bandwidth
  • Your firewall will not allow access to WriteOnline
  • You are not able to install Java on your Windows computer

Does the installed version work indefinitely?
Yes the installed version will work indefinitely. The online version will only work for the duration of your subscription.

Why am I asked to log in when I’m using the installed version?

If you have an Internet connection, logging in gives you access to your online folders and applies the User Preferences stored in your profile.

How do I update WriteOnline when I’m using the installed version?
You will be notified of new releases by email. To update the installed version, you must download a new installer and install it on your computer. The online version updates automatically.

Word processor

Can I change the default font and line spacing?
Yes – these are User Preferences that are automatically saved for your child, so it is remembered every time the program starts.

Can I increase the size of the toolbar?
There are two sizes, large and small. The default is small. The size is saved as a User Preference.

Predictor

How do I make the predictor fit different ability levels?
The predictor level is set as a User Preference for the individual user. You can change between four levels with just one click, or you can fine tune it by individually setting a number of options, such as the size of the predictor database (from 250 words to 60,000 words), the size of the font, and the number of words predicted.

Can I add words to the predictor?
Words that are in any Wordbar that is currently open are automatically used in the predictor. So if you are working on a document about a specific topic and you have a relevant Wordbar open, all those words will be predicted too. The words are used by the predictor only while the Wordbar file is open (although it can be minimized or hidden by another Wordbar), so that the predictor uses the words only while you are working on this topic.

Do I have to use the mouse to access the predictor?
In addition to the mouse, you also have the choice of using your numeric keypad or the main number keys. You can change the keyboard options with a single click on the main screen. The predictor is also switch accessible (see Special Needs section).

How does the speech work with the predictor?
To hear any word in the prediction list, either right-click with the mouse, or hold Ctrl while you press the relevant number key. Your child can keep trying words until they find the one they want.

My child would be confused by grammatical prediction. Can I turn this off, so that words are only predicted once they have started to type a word?
Yes. In addition to selecting one of the four prediction levels, if you click on the 'Custom' button you can fine tune every aspect of the prediction, including whether you not you want the next word predicted before you have started typing it.

Special Needs

Is it possible to make all Wordbars and documents appear in high contrast colours, to make them accessible for children with visual impairments?
Yes – in the accessibility options you can set colours and fonts that will override all other settings.

How extensive are the scanning options?
There are very extensive options for both one and two-switch scanning. You can set detailed timing options, including debounce and acceptance delays. There is also a wide range of options for the way the cells are scanned, plus you can set sound options, including an auditory scan.

Can I make an onscreen keyboard available every time I start?
Yes, having chosen which onscreen keyboard to use, you can opt to have it opening automatically every time you start the program.

Wordbars

How many Wordbars can I open at once?
There is no limit to the number of Wordbars you can have open. Each one is available with a single click on its tab along the bottom of the Wordbar area.

Can I edit the layout of a Wordbar?
There are extensive editing options when you are in Wordbar Edit Mode. It is very intuitive to resize columns, add rows and columns, merge cells, etc. You can colour-code individual or groups of cells as well as the tabs themselves. And there's a multiple-level 'Undo' feature.

Can I add, move, or delete a tab?
You can do all three of these very easily in Edit Mode.

How easy is it to change or add a word in Wordbar?
You don't even have to go into Edit Mode to change the text. Just hold Shift, and click on the cell you want to change. You can turn this feature off if you don't want your child to have access to this.

While using Wordbar or the predictor, if a student enters a whole word by mistake, is there a quick way of deleting it?
Just use the 'Delete Word' tool on the Wordbar toolbar.

My child needs the same words every time he uses the program. How can I easily make these words available?
You can have a Wordbar opening automatically every time the program starts. As well as being available in the Wordbar, the words will also appear in the predictor.

Do words have to be alphabetically sorted, or can I order them as I want?
It's your choice – you can have them alphabetically sorted, randomly sorted, or not sorted at all.

Can I add tooltips to Wordbar cells?
It's easy to add tooltips to any cell in Edit Mode.

Can I make tooltips speak?
You can't make tooltips speak. Instead, set up a text bubble. These stay on the screen until closed by the user, and they have a speak button.

How do I access ready-made Wordbars?
Click on the 'FREE Resources' button in Wordbar Explorer. Then you can browse through the many free files available from our LearningGrids World website and open them just like opening one of your own Wordbars. Wordbars are available in a wide variety of subject areas, and more are added every two weeks.

Purchasing WriteOnline

What happens first when I purchase WriteOnline?
You will be provided with the a CD and license document for installing WriteOnline. You will also receive a second license document for activating your 1 year subscription to the online version of WriteOnline.

Can I install WriteOnline on more than one computer?
You can only install a home user license on one computer. However, you can access the program online on any other computer with an internet connection.

Any other questions? Email us or call us on 01604 671691.