New Flash Extension: Convert Timeline to Symbol

Justin | Animate/Flash,extensions | Thursday, June 26th, 2008

Ever get halfway through a project and wish you’d put everything into a symbol instead of on the main timeline? This extension takes care of that. It’s also helpful for combining multiple files into one.

(Compatible with Flash MX 2008, Flash 8, and Flash CS3.)

Convert timeline to symbol.mxp

Or, if you’d like to replace your timeline with a graphic that plays through once (within the graphic the original layers will be retained):

Convert timeline to graphic.mxp

New Flash Extension – Set Stage to Element Size

Justin | Animate/Flash,extensions | Monday, June 23rd, 2008

I am officially addicted to making Flash extensions. It seems to tickle some very nerdy part of my brain.

This one sets the size of the stage based on a selected element. That element can be pretty much anything on the stage (shape, symbol, text, etc).

Compatible with Flash MX 2008, Flash 8, and Flash CS3.

Download here.

Flash Extension: Move Layers to New Folder

Justin | Animate/Flash,extensions | Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

This is a simple feature that I’ve always wanted in Flash, so I decided to create it.

Free (CS3 & newer) download here.

…And, by request, here’s a version for Flash MX 2004 and Flash 8.

Cold Hard Flash Announces Animation Studio Directory

Justin | Animate/Flash,animation | Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Cold Hard Flash has announced an Animation Studio Directory!

You can find our listing here.

The Next Big Thing in Interactive Design

Justin | design,interaction | Friday, June 13th, 2008

Adobe is currently working a project codenamed, “Thermo.” It will be the most intuitive process for converting Photoshop and Illustrator designs into interactive applications. The program looks similar to Dreamweaver’s code and design views. When you switch to the code view you can see that the application is producing Flex code underneath, so designers and developers can collaborate throughout the process.

Thermo also has one of the best user interfaces that I’ve seen in an application. There appears to be essentially one menu, which alters its content based on the context. When dragging around or scaling an object, the coordinates and dimensions are displayed next to the cursor. This type of interface design will likely eliminate the need to have dozens of panels open.

Thermo also solves a problem that studios have be wrangling with for years with their Flash and web applications. How do I should the customer how the product is going to work? Storyboards work relatively well for linear narratives, but interactive narratives often branch in several directions. So some studios go to the trouble of making elaborate Flash prototypes for the client so that they can sign off on the project. This can be extremely costly. Thermo promises to make such a strategy cost-effective by enabling the designer to produce a simple interactive application in seconds. See the videos for proof.

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