You can open Author inside your browser or on your desktop (via remote desktop connection).
Author in your browser
Open Author in your browser if you want to quickly switch between Author and other parts of the application, such as Review.
Author on your desktop
Open Author on your desktop if you want to work across multiple monitors and have lots of windows open.
If you can't access the remote desktop, check with your IT department to ensure your firewall allows access to downloading these sorts of files.