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Category Archives: Adobe Products

No Flash is not dead.

Adobe released an update to Flash Professional CC to include export HTML5 animations using the canvas tag. Previously in CS6, it was provided as an extension for the CreateJS framework. Now, it is fully integrated into the application. I expected Flash to go this route as it is already a very good platform for creating lightweight animations for the web.

Flash Professional CC December 2013 Update

Flash Professional CC 2013 December Update

 

Paul Trani (see below) and Joseph Labreque give a general overview on the update.

Adobe has introduced their game developer tools for the Flash platform. (Now available on the creative cloud.)

Adobe Scout - Profiler for Flash Development Scout (formerly project Monacle) gives the developer a superior profiling tool during development and optimization of flash-based content.

Adobe Gaming SDKThe Adobe Gaming SDK includes libraries for Starling, Feathers, and Away3D. It leverages usage of your target device GPU.

Flash C/C++ CompilerThe Flash C/C++ compiler (formerly Alchemy) takes your C/C++ code to target the Flash player. (Update: This has now been open-sourced as Flash Crossbridge on github: https://github.com/adobe-flash/crossbridge)

 

It’s pretty easy to get excited as a web developer these days.

Last Thursday, Alan Greenblatt, and Christophe Coenraets flew up from Boston to show off Adobe’s up and coming  Edge suite of creative web tools. The main take away is this: Check out:

html.adobe.com/edge

Alan gave a brief overview of the design tools. Particularly Edge Animate, and Edge web fonts. For those who have a good background in print design, they now have more leverage to use their skills to develop modern web sites. Also, Adobe is giving access to 500 fonts to use freely for developers. This is pretty significant since the days of Arial and Helvetica.

Christophe presented Edge Reflow, Edge Code (code named: Brackets), Edge Inspect and PhoneGap Build through his sample employee directory app. (I’ve seen the Flex version, and has also done one version with Java.) Also check out the capabilities of PhoneGap via his API Explorer app.

Edge Reflow is what’s buzzing in the web development industry. It is a tool that simplifies responsive design. It is in preview stage not even in Alpha, but there is a lot of positive feedback on it. Adobe is going through further study on it on how it can interact with other responsive design frameworks like Twitter Bootstrap.

I expect Adobe will make other announcements on Dec. 11 at the live – Create the Web event (10 am PST) on Facebook.

Currently Edge Animate and Edge Code are available on the Creative Cloud.

So I decided to give Captivate 6 a go at it. I thought it would be interesting to post a screen capture of which languages and OS options were available. I thought having a 64 bit Windows option very interesting. There has not been word about a new version of the E-Learning suite. I think this has to do with the launch of the Creative Cloud and how can other Adobe software fit in. (Although I do think that obtaining a subscription to the Creative Cloud is a worthwhile upgrade $29.99 a month for owners of CS3 and up until the end of August 2012.)

Fireworks Product BoxI always had this love for Fireworks since it’s inception along with Dreamweaver back in the Macromedia days. A lot of designers that I have met have a vague idea about its use in web development. To me, I think using Photoshop for web design is plain overkill or bloated software that’s useful generally for print based production. (Of course, this is a false assumption. I find it very interesting in video and 3D development. I happen to also use onOne Software’s Perfect Mask 4 software for background image replacement.) Fireworks has its place particularly for web design, wireframing, Flex skin development, and much more…

Anyway, Fireworks CS5 has been garnering a bit of attention lately from 2011 Adobe Max last week. I recently viewed David Hogue’s “I did not know that you can do that in Fireworks” presentation on Adobe TV. Through his presentation, he gave us a wealth of tips and information on extensions and commands that you can download.

I took note of two sites dedicated for extensions and commands:

I had thought that that the updater for Flash Builder 4.0 wasn’t working out for me via Eclipse or so I assumed. While I was taking Seb Lee Delisle’s video series on Papervision 3D 2 training on lynda.com I noticed that creating a new Actionscript project did not include the Flex 4.1 SDK. Then I thought “Wasn’t Flash Player 10.1 released recently?”

So after playing around with Eclipse and scouring the web, I landed on insideRIA and decided that the manual update was my best bet. But that did not pan out since the the manual update failed.

So finally by checking the Adobe Flex Support page, I had to pay attention to “Eclipse plug-in Users” heading instead of “Stand-alone Users.” Plugin users have to uninstall their plugin and reinstall the new plugin. BTW, by default, the stand-alone is offered so just scroll down the combo box to choose the Eclipse Plugin. (See screen shot below.)

Alas, this is part of my learning process of migrating as a Flash developer from the Flash IDE with FlashDevelop to Flash Builder.

So if anyone who is wondering why Flash Builder hasn’t updated on their eclipse build, check it out here at adobe.com.

DJ

Choose Eclipse Plugin

Select the Eclipse Plugin in the dropdown box.

In view of the upcoming Flash conference, CNet noticed a topic on a new feature of the upcoming Flash Player notably 3D support. This isn’t a surprise. It sounds like a revisit of Macromedia Director all over again. (Ala Battlestar Galactica “Razor” episode – “All this has happened before and will happen again. Again, again, again, again, again, again, again, again, again.”) I wonder how this will change the existent 3D APIs already like (Away3D, Papervision 2, and 3, etc…)

The 64bit issue has been mentioned as well.

Check out the link: http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-20009940-264.html?tag=TOCmoreStories.0

DJ

It’s been too quiet on the 64bit front. My OS now uses 64bit computing. It seems that they are taking this route as “top priority” (now that 10.1 has been released for browsers and for mobile, they can shift resources over to 64bit player development.)

The article is linked below:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-20008290-264.html

My prediction: They’ll announce it at MAX 2010. (I hope.)

DJ

Like many people in the tech industry, I have read Steve Job’s opinion of not having the Flash player on its devices. Some of his points are valid, others not. Consider this article:

http://jessewarden.com/2010/04/steve-jobs-on-flash-correcting-the-lies.html ,

http://l33.me/apples-ceo-entered-an-insanity-plea-as-the-re (From Flash and Flex Designers Magazine May 2010), and

from an e-learning development perspective: http://www.upsidelearning.com/blog/index.php/2010/05/05/is-html5-ready-for-elearning-development

For a visual, here:  http://theflashblog.com/?p=1975 This debunks Job’s argument that Flash does not have multitouch capability.

I think there is a lot of media attention and Jobs is leveraging the internet to make its claims and people believe them. We know that the web produces good content as well as bad content. So I don’t think we are able to get the whole picture of the situation. I think that the public is veering towards Jobs’ view without examining all the facts.

Another thing is the Federal Trade Commission is investigating Apple into its developer licensing.

http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/1604061/apple-microsoft

This means that Apple will only let developers create applications with their own tools instead of third party tools. So what does this mean for a developer? You have to create one app for Apple iProducts and use tools like Flash  for everything else.

The advantage for Jobs  is that Apple gets to control the App store by determining which app goes on and comes off. Enabling Flash on said iProducts would probably put a dent on the iStore app market. Who would need to buy a game when you can play it for free when developed in Flash on a website? It’s simply makes marketing sense  in order for Apple to generate its revenue. Who can blame them?

As for HTML5, Adobe is supporting that too. Grant Skinner commented “Why can’t we love HTML5 and Flash at the same time too?” But currently, HTML5 is rough on the edges. (It’s currently a draft specification not final. And knowing how the ECMA4 specification failed when Adobe, Microsoft, Apple, and other companies could not make an agreement, it may be a while before HTML5 is finalized and how it is implemented for every browser.) Perhaps it will be a good alternative for video delivery for the future. Still, Flash (or Silverlight for that matter), can produce rich applications and would probably still innovate and push technologies like JQuery and HTML5 to update their APIs.

I observe a lot of negative comments mostly from Apple Fanboys who detest Flash. (Maybe I am a Flash fanboy.) But Flash has been saving me a lot of grief to create web based sites and applications without having to know the DOM intricacies between Firefox, Safari, IE, Opera, and so on. (Well, I know this is resolved by using JQuery.) I just think the software that Adobe produces are very cool and I enjoy developing with them.

I don’t own an iPhone or an iPad. I think they are really cool. My kids love them. Developers who make applications for these devices are of excellent quality. I also think that developing games with Unity that can port to these devices is also a big plus for 3D gaming for these devices. It would be a shame if Apple tells them they can’t develop applications for their platform.

So far from my experience, Windows OS platform dominates the e-learning market, so owning a Mac is a nice to have. (This changed when E-learning suite 2 was announced yesterday which now supports the MAC OS.) Besides, Adobe has been a huge supporter of this market. To me, it would be a a bonus if I could develop e-learning apps in any kind of OS. So to develop iApps with just one development environment – namely Flash CS5 is a bonus.

Just my opinion.

[kml_flashembed publishmethod=”static” fversion=”10.0.0″ useexpressinstall=”true” movie=”http://blog.geminilearning.com/swf/3diphone.swf” width=”230″ height=”230″ targetclass=”flashmovie” play=”true”]Get Adobe Flash player

[/kml_flashembed]

I had recently worked through a quick tutorial on FreeSpin3D on the Adobe Edge magazine December 2009 edition. I had noticed this software through an ad on Flex and Flash developer magazine and so I had decided to check out the demo. Of course, using 3D in real-time to design your site is very cool and convenient. The 3D Phone above is simply applying a motion tween on the layer containing the 3D object and using the trackball to change the rotation about the y-axis.

Here are some of my notes during my tutorial experience:

1)    CPU resources take a hit during development and during rendering. Would it be preferable to be working off a workstation during the design? Regardless, even on the freespin 3D website, the rotating the IPod was chugging along. I wonder if it is an issue with my computer? (However, it is a year old and runs off a dual core Centrino, it should be responding well.)

2)    Behaviors:

  • Mouse control doesn’t respond well
  • Adding behaviours can be finicky. In some cases, I could not delete the behaviors I worked with.

3)    I would have liked to manually enter the x-y-z rotation values in text fields beside the trackball – feature request perhaps?

4)    It’s nice that they offer a 20% discount when you download the tutorial. This is fair for those who have really tried out the software.

Update: Flash Magazine.com had an excellent review posted.