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Flash
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Why Flash Is Significant | February 12, 2001 | “Book sales are a useful indicator of interest in a particular technology. In Amazon's listing of the 30 most popular computer books for 2000, Flash occupies four slots, with the first Flash title in the 10th spot. Carla Bayha, computer book buyer at Borders, told me that 'Flash was THE hottest topic last year and still is this year.' I wanted to talk over the apparent popularity of Flash with someone who's been following Flash for a while, and who is familiar with the designers/developers that use Flash just as they've used Macromedia's Director. I found Bruce Epstein, O'Reilly editor and author of Director in a Nutshell and Lingo in a Nutshell and more recently, the editor of an upcoming book on ActionScript, Flash's scripting language.”

Is Flash 99% Bad? | December 29, 2000 | “The use of Flash/Shockwave content on the web has become very widespread recently, and has led to a certain amount of controversy over its value. There are various usability issues in the use of Flash, as outlined in Jakob Nielsen's report. Nielsen raises several valid points, but I feel that his assertion that Flash is 99% bad is misguided, assuming that the web consists entirely of corporate sites, and that Flash content is generally gratuitous animation in the form of intros or information delivery systems which could be better made in html.”

Information architecture visualization | December 8, 2000 | Damn! “My ITP MPS Thesis will be a prototype for a Flash driven Information Architecture visualization tool. The tool will function as an elegant and easy to use solution for the difficult task of mapping and documenting complex large-scale site architecture and functional specifications. Through the variable passing and expression building features of Flash 4.0, I will create a front-end experience that allows a user to build a customized interactive presentation without knowing anything about the Flash authoring environment. The prototype will be supported by documentation that will articulate the information architecture and functional specifications used in the development of the concept.” Thanks peterme.

Flash Access: Unclear on the Concept | December 2, 2000 | “In Christian theology, it doesn't matter exactly when you accept Jesus Christ as your personal saviour. As long as you do it before you croak and ask forgiveness for your sins, you're in like Flynn. This, apparently, is the Macromedia philosophy when it comes to accessibility.”

Macromedia - Flash Usability | November 28, 2000 | “Create the ultimate user experience with Macromedia Flash. Macromedia is working closely with the design and development community, and usability experts to provide suggestions we think will help you create highly engaging user-focused sites. Our goal is to empower the community to keep redefining what the Web can be and build cutting-edge sites that provide the best user experience.” Thanks CamWorld.

Flash optimization | November 27, 2000 | “Create Flash your momma can see.” A short presentation (with examples) by Juxt Interactive's Creative Director Todd Purgason.

ae-shorts | November 21, 2000 | “AE-Shorts is a collection of digital experiments: a visual investigation and evolutionary process catalogued and recorded within a 3-Dimensional interface... Why: We think of shorts as research, helping us develop our skills by indulging our ideas about user interactivity, cycles of time, space, motion or texture. Shorts can take the form of interactive elements, allowing the user to manipulate visuals dynamically. Sometimes the shorts can simply play out a sequence without any interaction required from the user.”

Flash is Evil...and other ridiculous statements | November 3, 3000 | “Hello, my name is Hillman Curtis. I believe the most attractive quality the web has to offer is its propensity for constant change. I believe the web is defined by a collective intelligence and cannot be dictated by any one person, group or set of ideas.”

Bad side of Flash 5 | October 13, 2000 | “...90% [of web users] have the Flash plugin installed, however that statistic represents those who have the Flash 2 plugin installed, not the current Flash 4 plugin. (only 74% of users have that) Those who don't have the latest version of the plugin installed will be treated to a movie lacking sound, advanced interaction (actionscript) and forms.”

moock web lectures >> flash forward nyc | October 2, 2000 | “marketing types often think of flash as being a suitable medium for publishing what they vaguely call 'high-impact' web sites. while that term may look good on a press release, it doesn't really explain in any practical terms what flash does well. in order to determine whether or not our content suits the flash medium, we need to plainly list flash's communication assets.”

Flash Usability Challenge | September 19, 2000 | “I do care about developing and providing solutions that augment the customer experience. The key for me is identifying and providing effective, high quality web sites. For me, usability is a huge part of the customer experience. I basically filter every article and email and news posting as either helping or harming the customer experience. In a nutshell, the general usability of web sites is important to me. That is why I am sick and tired of people telling that Flash is great...”

Hypertext, Narrative, Image, Flash | September 15, 2000 | “The role of narrative in the Web experience is a pressing concern throughout the Web world, from entertainment to ecommerce. How can we manage the narrative experience in the presence of both interaction and animation? We hope to bring together a small group of leading writers, designers, and theoreticians to define (and extend) the state of the art in an intense weekend roundtable and workshop.” November 11-12, 2000 Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

{:{:{::: Fundacao Laramara :::}:}:} | August 31, 2000 | A compelling and interesting approach to designing interfaces with sounds cues.

Design in Motion | August 4, 2000 | “Design in Motion's mission is to facilitate the professional activities of Designers by providing information resources, editorial and news updated daily on the art, technology and business of motion design for television and media-rich Web applications.”

Flash Security | August 1, 2000 | “Intellectual property is one of today's hottest commodities, and every Flash author should be concerned about the distribution and use of his or her original work. Because Flash Player content is structured as a binary file rather than as plain text like HTML, the Flash content appears more secure. Unfortunately, Flash Player security can be compromised in a variety of ways.”

Restrain Yourself | July 26, 2000 | “Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should | One of the downsides of all the technical innovations of our day is that the software designers of the world have made it really easy to create wonderfully ugly sites! Somehow, in all the fuss over the Web and the never ending desire for 'more interactivity' we've substituted 'flashy' for 'functional,' and 'dramatic' for 'design.'”

4 Ways Flash Kills | July 11, 2000 | “Boo.com is the first example of a phenomenon I call Death by Flash. You can expect to see more of it over the next year, as sites that tried to 'break out of the box' find that 'the box' is where too many of their potential customers live.” Thanks WebWord.

Making sure Usability 'Fitts' Flash | July 10, 2000 | “We Flash designers have to look outside our field for guidelines to help us make out usability decisions. One field that I think can be helpful is interface design, in particular one simple, absolute, and immutable rule of interface design that hold up against the test of time, Fitt's Law (pronounced Fitizez). Flash designers can apply this law to our field because it involves the way people use their mouse (or other pointing devices) to interact with the computer. The designers of your operating system used Fitt's Law to determine how the buttons, menus and other elements would appear and act. Flash designers have much to gain from understanding the applications of Fitt's Law.”

XPLANE | Xplanations | Flash vs. GIF | June 30, 2000 | “Flash animations and GIF animations approach graphics in fundamentally different ways. Flash graphics are composed of vectors — mathamatically-defined points and lines. GIF animations are bitmaps: they are composed of small dots, or 'pixels,' each one having its own assigned color.”

Create a Usable Flash Site | June 30, 2000 | “Flash receives a great deal of criticism from usability and web standards advocates, and their arguments are usually valid. What the critics fail to understand is that the designers are usually responsible for the lack of usability, not the program itself. Flash has the capacity to create usable sites, but requires that designers follow a few guidelines.” Thanks WebWord.

Flash Bible | June 28, 2000 | “Technical Notes for Flash.” This site features some good-lookin' tips, tricks, tutorials and downloads.

Hey Flasher, Stop Abusing your Visitors | June 23, 2000 | “How can we put user control into Flash apps on the web? Well, in many ways, Flash is not designed to give the users a lot of control over their environment. Flash is a tool for designers to take more control from the users (that is not to say that some Flash sites have not made significant inroads into user control of Flash). This does not gel well with the needs of users on the Internet.”

Flazoom.com | June 9, 2000 | “Flazoom.com's objective is to share the coolest Flash content on the web with our visitors. Our team of Flazoomers are dedicated Flash Fanatics who are on top of the latest and greatest Flash sites from around the world. Once a new flash site has been identified, we post a blurb about that site to the Flazoom.com home page.” This new site recently made the link rounds when they published this editorial: A Cancer on the Web called Flash.

Which brings us to...

Sympathy for the Plug-In | June 9, 2000 | “Please allow me to introduce myself. I am the cancer that has riddled the formerly healthy body of the Web. I am the darkness that has spread forever across entire empires. Like an ocean receding, inexorable, merciless, I bring draught and decay to lush worlds and watch them dissipate. Entire planets of beauty are reduced to sand in my grasp, jungles to deserts, cradles to sepulchres. Everywhere I go, entropy follows; where I have gone, my way is the only way. Browsers everywhere have fallen by the millions before me, helpless, submissive, utterly obeisant. Your puny standards are no match for me. Though you have called me many names, there is only one: Flash.”

The Flash Challenge | June 7, 2000 | “The Flash Challenge has since 1997 been the best site to view and rate your favorite Flash websites.”

The Cartoonist's Guide to Drawing and Animating with Flash | May 4, 2000 | “Learn the art of drawing and animating using the standard tool for animating over the web. From animated comic strips to full length feature films. The cartoonist's guide to drawing and animating in Flash.” Thanks signal2noise.

Flash on TV | April 7, 2000 | “The ability to use Flash to create 2D character animation for video and television on standard desktop computers allows many animators to develop work for those fields at a significantly reduced cost. Flash's ease of use combined with the dropping price of video cards and editing systems, finally frees animators from the enormous cost constraints associated with previous 2D animation hardware and software systems.”

Flash 4 For Beginners | March 27, 2000 | “This small cluster of articles takes you through the creation of a simple animation and is aimed at people very new to Flash. When you've finished reading, you'll have a basic understanding of how the program works and how to use its principal functions. You'll also be able to test your movie and mount it on a Web page.”

Flashgamer.com | March 21, 2000 | “Flashgamer.com — Your source for free Flash 4 online games. Play games at no charge. All games created with Macromedia Flash 4. 100% Flash, 100% Fun... As of today, the site features 8 timewasters made with Flash, and more is to come.”

Adobe LiveMotion Preview review | March 20, 2000 | “LiveMotion has integration with other Adobe products, and its object-oriented approach offers a quicker way to create animations. However, because it lacks support for some advanced Flash features, such as complex scripting, LiveMotion won't cause an exodus of Flash users to Adobe's camp. Nevertheless, new animators and Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator users will have an easy path to productivity.”

Adobe LiveMotion Beta | March 7, 2000 | “Adobe on Monday rolled out a public beta version of LiveMotion, a new software tool for creating graphics in a variety of formats, including Macromedia Inc.'s Flash as well as GIF, JPEG, PNG and Adobe Photoshop. Adobe unveiled LiveMotion — dubbed a 'Flash killer' by some industry observers — for Macs and Windows systems at February's Seybold Seminars Boston/Publishing. The beta software is available for download from Adobe's Web site; the company said the final version of the software will ship in the second quarter for about $400.” —ZDNet News

flashforward2000 conference | March 7, 2000 | “This first-ever Flash solutions conference and expo is three jam-packed days of keynotes, panels, pre-conference workshops, hands-on training, breakout sessions and product showcases. With something for every Flash user from beginner to advanced, this event features the most creative uses of Flash 4 technology.”

heavy.com | March 6, 2000 | Wow.

Macromedia, Intuwave Partner to Expand Flash's Reach | March 1, 2000 | “Macromedia Inc. this week launched a partnership with Intuwave to enable the development of advanced wireless content and services based on Macromedia's Flash technology. Intuwave, which develops wireless data services and applications, will begin porting the Macromedia Flash Player to the Symbian platform, with the intention of bringing rich, interactive, high-impact content to its wireless devices...”

Automating Web Graphics With Generator | Feb 24, 2000 | “Generator 2 is the powerful and flexible extension of Macromedia's Flash 4 Web media product. It lets you mail-merge data and media objects within reusable templates created with Flash. Along with the ability to dynamically insert text, sounds, and images, Generator packs a set of prebuilt graph, list, and table objects for you to use. Because Generator relies so heavily on Flash, it's a little tough at first to distinguish where Flash ends and Generator begins. These ten tips will help you get up to speed...”

Macromedia Flash | Archive | The “official” site; info on new releases/features, free downloads, tips and tricks.

Flash Arcade | Archive | A bunch of fun games here. Some classics (like “Flash Invaders” and “Flashsteriods”), as well as some new-for-the-90s games like “How to Crap in the Woods” (“You're hiking in the woods and nature calls... what to do?”), and the classic “Urinal Game.”

Flashy Dancing | Archive | “A cheerful alternative to the dancing baby.” A cool interactive flash dancing creature.

Get Reel Trivia | Archive | Flash-based movie trivia game.


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