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Archive for December, 2006

XPLANE

XPLANE the Function

Some of you may already know, but in early October I switched jobs and started working full-time with XPLANE as their Senior Flash Developer. While XPLANE has been in existence for over thirteen years, the interactive arm of the company is fairly new. Because of this, the Portland office still has that start-up, new company atmosphere and feeling. In fact, besides the amazing potential, it was probably the major reason I decided to join the team.

So why hadn't I posted about switching companies earlier? Well, the corporate website was very dated and didn't clearly state what we do. Funny considering we are all about clarity in communications, right? :) But as of Christmas eve, a new website (in Flash!) has gone live at http://www.xplane.com.

The best feature (from a Flash developer's perspective) is the usage of SWFAddress. I had posted about SWFAddress's ability to allow deep-linking and bookmarking of Flash sites a few months back, and this was the first project to use it. I have to say, it was very easy to use and the developer was very responsive to my bug reports and helped me to resolve them in a very timely fashion. And, it's open source to boot.

So go check out the new site. I'm interested in hearing your comments!

Update [2007.01.02]: Looks like the new design is being very well received. Word is spreading as bloggers have found the site and the internet linking engine has taken effect. In the first week the site was live the number of visitors has just about tripled!

Controversy: Adobe’s New Icons

LifeClever has some insight about the new Adobe CS3 application icons in a recent post. I was shocked to find out that these icons were being considered final -- when I first installed a few of the CS3 beta programs months back I assumed they were put together by a developer who needed to distinguish between CS2 and the new beta apps. Certainly not an iconic design firm.

But, alas, they are sticking around and it was a conscious decision. LifeClever is written by a designer with MetaDesign, the agency which does a good portion of the branding for Adobe. He provides a color wheel diagram showing where all of the apps fit in the color scheme, and he also states that the system is based off of a "periodic table." I wish he would talk more about the process involved, but I understand needing to remain neutral in this situation.

I'll reserve judgment until the final release of CS3, because if the feedback I'm seeing around the 'net is heard by Adobe, I have a feeling Adobe and/or MetaDesign may make a change.

LifeClever's post can be found here:

http://www.lifeclever.com/2006/12/21/adobes-new-icons-love-or-hate-em/#comments

Flex2 != AS3

Keith Peters (author of Making Things Move -- see sidebar) has a post today regarding Flex2 and Actionscript 3. His "rant" makes a great point about the differences between a Flex2 application and an Actionscript application.

In short, you have to use the Flex framework to call your program a Flex application. If you code only in Actionscript 3, you've got a Flash application. Makes sense, but I agree with Keith that a lot of people are getting this confused. It confused me initially as well!

Check out Keith's post (err rant) here.

Free Photoshop CS3 Training on Lynda.com

Lynda.com is offering free Photoshop CS3 training, covering topics such as the new CS3 interface and features. I found it very helpful considering I'm only an average Photoshop user.

http://movielibrary.lynda.com/html/modPage.asp?ID=327

Enjoy!

Adobe Photoshop CS3 Beta Released

According to John Nack of Adobe, Photoshop CS3 Beta will be available on Adobe Labs today or tomorrow. Of course the best feature is native Mac Intel support, but I'm sure there are some other great features to check out. A great deal of those are listed in an article on Macworld's website:

http://www.macworld.com/news/2006/12/14/photoshopbeta/index.php

John's full post is available at the link below, and includes an FAQ and links to more info.

http://blogs.adobe.com/jnack/2006/12/announcing_the.html

Also, check out this great blog post from another Adobe employee, Scott Byer.

Just bring it into Photoshop and “Photoshop” it.

In honor of the soon to be released Photoshop CS3 beta:

Photoshop It

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