Getting set up to use BitPaper

This page is to help our students get up and running with BitPaper. If you think this information looks complicated, don’t worry! All you really need to get started are Steps 1-3. Everything else is simply to improve and enhance your BitPaper experience. Remember, it’s our job to teach you things you didn’t know you needed to know, and which make you better off for knowing them. 😊

  1. You should have already been sent a link to your very own BitPaper.  This link is like your exercise book, so please treat it like your personal property and don’t share it with anyone outside your family, because anyone who has the link can go to your BitPaper at any time and scribble on it!
  2. BitPaper is optimized for Google Chrome, but should work okay in Edge, Safari or Firefox.  To improve performance, BitPaper recommends closing any unused browser tabs and keeping your computer plugged in (i.e. not running on battery power).  Please bookmark your BitPaper for future use.
  3. You may go straight to step 5 if you are attending in-house.  If you are attending online, you will need to join a video call.  Although BitPaper provides video calls, we use Jitsi Meet for better performance and reliability.  You should test your camera and microphone settings before your first lesson – go to the Jitsi Meet website and click on “Start meeting”.
  4. Alternatively, you might prefer to run the video call on your smartphone and use all of your computer screen for BitPaper – we highly recommend this option. Download the Jitsi Meet App and enter the last “word” of the video URL as the meeting room name.
  5. At the start of your online lesson, your tutor will paste a link to the video call on your BitPaper.
    To open the link:
    • click on the Select tool ImgSelectTool on the toolbar or type “4”
    • click on the link, then click on “Open Link” button which should appear above the linkjitsibitpaper2
  6. Hopefully you’re ready to start working on your BitPaper now! The toolbar at the bottom has a range of useful buttons, the most useful ones being the Pen and the Text tools:
    • (Hotkey “2”) Colour settings for your pen and text. Please choose black or blue, just as you would in your exercise book.
    • (Hotkey “1”) Pen and ruler. To draw straight lines, hold down the shift key as you write.
    • (Hotkey “3”) Eraser. Please avoid using the eraser as much as possible – it doesn’t actually erase anything, it just paints over it with “invisible” ink.  You can type “z” to undo your last action, but we would prefer it if you left most of your writing alone. Mistakes are a valuable part of your learning record and should not be “rubbed out”.
    • (Hotkey “4”) Select tool. You can select a single object, or a group of objects, and move/resize/delete them. To resize without changing proportions, hold down the shift key as you drag a bottom corner of the rectangle. 
    • (Hotkey “5”) Panning tool. This allows you to move your (infinitely large) BitPaper around your screen.  Be careful!  When you pan your BitPaper, you pan it for your tutor too, so good communication is needed.
    • (Hotkey “6”) Shapes. Click on the tiny circular arrows on top of the Shapes button (hotkey “s”) to open up the Shape Library.
    • (Hotkey “7”) Text.  If you don’t have a digital pen, text is going to be the fastest way for you to communicate your maths to your tutor.  BitPaper’s text editor has limited support for mathematical equations, but after starting a text window, if you click on the “Symbols” button, you will find some useful things.CaptureTo edit your text, use the Select tool (hotkey 4) and double click on the text to go into edit mode.  
    • (Hotkey “9”) The recently added LaTeX-based equations editor generates much nicer looking equations than the text editor, but we don’t expect you to learn how to write the syntax unless you are very keen. Equations can be grouped using gather or align.GeoDist
  7. BitPaper was really designed to be used with a digital pen. If you have a touch screen, you might be able to get away with using your finger. If you don’t have a touch screen, we recommend buying a graphics tablet and pen, e.g. a Huion H430P. You might also find some good options on Trade Me.
  8. Video streaming is very demanding on bandwidth, and a device’s wifi connection is a potential bottleneck. If you are using wifi, try to stay close to the modem/router.  (Search on YouTube for wifi advice.)  Better still, switch off your device’s wifi and plug it directly into the modem/router using an ethernet cable.
  9. If you need to upload photos of your school work, take a screenshot of the photo to reduce the size of (and speed up) the upload.  There are built-in snipping tools for Windows, Mac and ChromeOS.
  10. Remember that whatever you write on your paper is publicly visible. BitPaper also records every event on your paper, even after you’ve deleted it – successive undo’s will bring them back.  We’ve already watched some of you do huge scribbles all over your paper before the start of your lesson.  Best assume that your tutor has your BitPaper open at all times.  😉