Monthly Archives: June 2006

Adobe Flash 9 public alpha is out

For real, Flash Professional 9 is out in public alpha !
Meaning we can begin to familiarize with Actionscript 3 within the new IDE.
Download page here

Here are some interessing link

ActionScript 3.0 Language Reference

ActionScript 3.0 overview
Tips for learning ActionScript 3.0
Building an image-viewing widget with ActionScript 3.0
Exploring the Flash Professional 9 ActionScript 3.0 Preview
SoundMixer.computeSpectrum()
Programming ActionScript 3.0
ActionScript Technology Center

 
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Shared Object in Flash Lite

As I blogged about some days ago, I had to wait before receiving my Flash Lite Player for my mobile phone and that did just get me crazy. But now I’ve received my Flash Lite Player 2, so I can test my applications.
The first part that takes my attention was shared object as I thought that if application doesn’t have over time memory, they may be useless.
[kml_flashembed movie=”http://www.metah.ch/blog/image/soTest.swf” height=”332″ width=”281″/]

Shared Object are easy to manipulate with Flash Lite, here’s a little application that write something in your mobile memory (you tell him what to write). After you close and reopen the application the saved object is still existing (might be useful to keep some important information about the user).

The shared Object will only work on your mobile phone not on debug mode (but it will on a normal Flash Player 7)

To test this, just install this application on your mobile, write a word and click on Insert then quit the application. After you reopen it, the size of the Shared Object will appear, if you click on Test you will see what you had written before closing it.

[kml_flashembed movie=”http://www.metah.ch/blog/image/codeSwf.swf” height=”400″ width=”380″ /]

Download the fla

 
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Flash Conference in the UK

Flash on the beach banner

Flash on the Beach conference is the first major Flash conference in the UK for over 6 years! Over 40 of the world’s most talented Flash designers, developers and artists presenting on 3 tracks over 3 full days with mixer get togethers each morning and evening for essential networking opportunities. Flash on the Beach has brought together the most creative, technical, inspirational awe-inspiring, educational and entertaining industry leading speakers in the rich media industry.

 
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Flash pre-deployment pattern

Flash Developement Pattern

Here’s a little pattern I made for«homework» about the integration of usability in a website. Now that I’m nearly on holiday I found the time to transform it for Flash only.
This pattern is more developer oriented (but can overlap the designer work).
Also these are the kind of thing « a bit boring » you don’t want to do at the end of a project (in my point of view).
I’ve cut the pattern in four entities:

  • Technical (about user system)
  • Accessibility (about user handicap)
  • Usability (user friendliness)
  • Refercing (about findability)
  • Technical
    First we want to know what kind of system is visiting us. We cannot show the swf to a user who doesn’t have Javascript or Flash plugin (need to think about the Flash version you’ll use). The user will be redirect to a part of our site working perfectly for him.
    What the size of the window where the browser is display? You don’t want a part of your site to be unseen. The content size must be adaptable until a reasonable limit.
    The download speed of the user is important in the way you don’t want to publish high quality content to a 56 kb/s instead you give him a low quality (letting him the opportunity to change is a good usability point).
    Accessibility
    All this accessibility part must be taken seriously as it’s unethical that people with handicap can’t access information and soon illegal. Flash as some accessibility function, don’t forget to use them.
    The eyes compatibility is to test that your user will see nearly the same thing (color change).
    The size of the text must be resizable, small text are for some people unreadable.
    You site needs to be readable by screen reader application, or it won’t be accessible to some people.
    Usability
    Heuristic has to be defined in the early development as some function has to be integrated in code).
    User friendly means to not make people avoid to ask themselves « how do I what I want to do » it shall be obvious.
    Backward and forward navigation is important to manage or people risk to be feeling uncomfortable on your website.
    Referencing
    Html documents needs to be well meta-tagged and descripted.
    Swf documents needs as well to be meta-tagged and descripted.
    Important text can be over/under a swf. So search robots still can index your content (beware with Google politics about that).

    A lot of thing could be added but I estimated that that was the main guideline to be follow for the user. Unfortunately all these things take energy, time and money but if not done, it really can kill your website.

     
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    Reasons for embracing flash lite

    Mariam Dholkawala (from Indiagame) presented yesterday a great presentation about Flash Lite and the work of Indiagame. The presentation was made possible by the work of The Boston Adobe Mobile and Devices User Group.
    Mariam has also list the reasons of embracing Flash Lite :

  • Easy adaptability
  • Cost and time effective development
  • Author once and deploy on multiple platforms
  • Easy refreshing/re-skinning of content
  • Easy and quick porting of content
  • Satisfies user curiousness for newer and richer content
  • Visually appealing content as compared to other platforms
  • global penetration of Flash Lite supported handhelds
  • Typically what I would say to an anxious / septic client ;)
    A lot more of interesting things have been said, if you want more about this go check at BAMDUG for a membership.

    If you are interested in attending this presentation and others please join the User Group by seding an email to: flashmobilegroup at gmail dot com. The User Group is open to anyone interested in Flash Lite from anywhere around the world.

    I really have a lot of hope for Flash Lite, and the FL2 is great. But here in Switzerland the penetration of FlashLite 2 device is quite poor. And I never heard anyone but a developer wanting to pay for a plugin…

     
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    Want to get crazy?

    Flash Lite Logo
    Try to buy the Flash Lite 2.0 Player from Switzerland and you will understand ;)
    My first link to the FL2 player made me go to the US adobe shop, which make impossible for me to buy (as I must go to the Switzerland Shop).
    So I go to Switzerland Shop and logged in, then it sends to the France Adobe Store. In the French Shop they ask me to log in (one more time), and give me a nice 404 error…
    Ok ok, let’s make a search, bring me to another “page not found” …

    Back to the Flash lite product page (which I couldn’t found in French) brings me back to the US-Store and make an infinite loop for me quest.
    I don’t even talk about the new registration process, which I can’t even access. And when I finally access it, it returns to the US STORE.
    Anyway there is note :

    Due to a technical issue, you may not be able to complete your request at this time. Please email your Nokia handset model, IMEI#, and your email address to astrain@adobe.com for a copy of Flash Lite 2 player.

    So please send my Flash Lite player 2 :)) I just have buy a new mobile and I can’t even test it …

     
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    Flowers

    Today it was my birthday (26) and my University gave me some nice gifts, 2 exams (database & knowledge management).
    So I just wanted to do something more funny for a couple of minutes, so came to life this little flower these flowers.
    The code is inspired by the flowers made by Glen Rhodes in the book Flash Math Creativity from friendsofed.
    [kml_flashembed movie=”http://www.metah.ch/blog/image/simple.swf” height=”300″ width=”300″ /]
    [kml_flashembed movie=”http://www.metah.ch/blog/image/tournesol.swf” height=”300″ width=”300″ /]

     
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    ActionScript 2.0 lessons

    Nomades Logo
    Tomorrow for the first time in my life I’ll be giving lessons about actionscripting with Flash. These lessons are an introduction only and are meant for user who already has accomplished the first level of learning Flash IDE.
    The lessons will cover from the real basis of OOP, passing by the multimedia scripting (video, sound, mic, webcam), make a little jump on Flash Lite and finally end with actionscript animation.
    It will take place at the Nomades, Geneva (Switzerland), the lessons will be given in French.
    It’s 10 times 3 hours long.
    Let’s hope I’ll make a good job ;)

     
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