Archive for November, 2005

You a BAADMMUG?

If you live in the San Francisco / Bay area, then you are most certainly a BADMMUG. I remember when I first went to a meeting and was looking for the office, when I would ask peeps where the room is they would look at me like I was looking for a Hip hop Artist or something with a low rider, gold chains and all the bling and thats simply not true.

This is a unique and highly motivated group of professionals looking for an extra tip and trick here and there.

Not in San Francisco? At least you can watch the live Breeze Presentation:

http://mmusergroup.breezecentral.com/r42726741/

Note: The presentation will begin at 7:00 PM, PST, that is, West Coast time, which is GMT -8.

I would suggest anyone interested in Flash Detection to try and make this meeting.
You can find more details on their site at: http://www.baadmmug.org/

Open Studio Discussion in 10 minutes

Today I’ll be building a template to work with a site I use for testing Contribute issues in support. If you have an issue or need some help with something, feel free to stop by and I’ll see what I can do to help.

Note: The Open Studio Discussion is best viewed at 1024×768 and lasts from 7:00pm-9:00pm PST

Here’s a quick summary of what can happen in the Discussion:

  • Ask questions about Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Contribute, and Flash.
  • Show off some work that used the Studio in some form or fashion. (not limited to Studio 8)
  • Provide Tips and workarounds for various issues that could disrupt normal workflows
  • Brainstorm about possible extensions to extend the Studio
  • Chill out and have a good time exploring Breeze

Contribute Easter Eggs!

I love Easter Eggs and had no idea Contribute had any until…now

Contribute Team Pictures

  1. Ctrl + Help + About Macromedia Contribute

What a great team! Being able to work with them is truly an honor. The Contribute team rocks!

Mastermind

I believe this is only for Windows

  1. View > Go to Web Address
  2. Enter "play a game" and click OK

Beware. Clients will become un-productive if they find this game. :P

The Trees

  1. Administer a site
  2. Edit role settings and select New Images
  3. Click the tree image a couple times
  4. Next time you restart Contribute and edit a page…check the image button.

Be sure to check it out every now and then, the tree changes throughout the year. :)

Roundtrip images with Flash!

Roundtrip Ra-Uun-duh tree-up
Macromedian term to describe the process when editing an object whether it’s a bitmap, code, or a swf and transferring its properties to another Studio app instantly thus eliminating tedious and repetitious import steps in the process.

Not only can you copy and paste directly into Flash from Fireworks and retain alpha transparency, but you can also roundtrip bitmaps with Fireworks while preserving the PNG source file.

Before Studio 8, you would have had to either update the bitmap via “right-click > properties” in the library panel or delete it and re-copy the bitmap over from Fireworks which creates a Fireworks Objects folder located in the Library.

I got into a habit of copying bitmap and vector objects from Fireworks and pasting them into Flash over and over again until I got it just right that it took me longer to get used to the FW/FL Roundtrip workflow enhancement. A couple seconds of preparation will be well worth it to be in-sync with Flash and bitmap editing.

For this walk through, it is recommended to download the source and follow the steps below:

  1. Open Flash 8
  2. Open movie.fla
  3. File > Import > Import to Stage, and select image.png
  4. In the PNG Import Settings, adjust the options like below and click ok.

    Note: Experiment with the PNG Import Settings. (Selecting “Import as a single flattened bitmap” will not create a folder called Fireworks Objects in your FLA.)

    This could be my personal preference, but I can’t stand the auto-generated Fireworks folder that gets created in the Library when copying objects from FW to FL. You can’t win, just leave it there until your finished going back and forth, then kill it and organize your library.

  5. Select the “caddy” bitmap on the stage
  6. Click the “Edit” button found in the Property Inspector (PI) which will invoke the “Roundtrip” process to Fireworks.

    Note: If the “Edit” button is disabled, then open the Library panel, right-click image.png > properties, click Import and select image.png in the roundtrip folder, click ok and proceed to the next step. The reason its disabled is somehow Flash wasn’t able to detect the source path so we will force it or update it here.

  7. Make an edit to the bitmap
  8. Click “Done” in the top-left corner of the document in Fireworks which will complete the last step in the Roundtrip process. At this point, you should see the image updated in Flash.

Now Roundtrip until your hearts content…just remember, when the you Roundtrip the PNG file back into Flash, it gets automatically saved so no reverting unless you made a copy of the file beforehand. ;)

In order to retain the Alpha transparency, make sure to set the canvas color to transparent in Fireworks, if not, the Roundtrip process will carry the background information with it unlike the copy/paste feature where it doesn’t matter if the canvas color is transparent or not.

Fireworks is also the central hub and starting place to design web site mocks and then shift your mindset into either Dreamweaver or Flash’s environment for final implementation of the design.

The more integration with the Studio apps, the more productive we can become when developing web sites and rich web applications.

OSD starts in 5 minutes!

Sheesh, it feels like yesterday since the last Open Studio Discussion. :)

The last OSD (Open Studio Discussion) was fast paced and I eventually split the Breeze room into 2 Chat pods, one for Flash/Flex and the second for Dreamweaver/Fireworks/Contribute so the topics could stay somewhat focused. There was also 2 screenshare pods going at once which is the first time I’ve seen that in action.

Note: The Open Studio Discussion is best viewed at 1024×768 and lasts from 7:00pm-9:00pm PST

Here’s a quick summary of what can happen in the Discussion:

  • Ask questions about Dreamweaver, Fireworks, and Flash 8.
  • Show off some work that used the Studio in some form or fashion. (not limited to Studio 8)
  • Provide Tips and workarounds for various issues that could disrupt normal workflows
  • Brainstorm about possible extensions to extend the Studio
  • Chill out and have a good time exploring Breeze

Im also open to Flex, however, don’t rely on getting an answer from me. Im still learning myself. :)

Quickly determine the version of CPS

Here’s a quick way to determine the version of Contribute Publishing Server (CPS) on your server.

In the address bar of your preferred web broswer, type:

https://<server>:8900/contribute/ckm?info

Where <server> is the name of the domain or server, you might also have it running on a different a port than 8900 (default).

Before I knew about this trick, I was always determining the CPS version by the changes made in the User Interface from version 1.0 to 1.1. :S

If you have no idea what CPS is, then I’d suggest checking out:

http://www.macromedia.com/software/contribute/server/

How do I participate in a Beta?

I often get asked if I can add someone to a Beta Program and typically this is not something I can do right away. If you are interested in working with a Studio Beta for Dreamweaver, Flash and Fireworks and you feel you can actively particpate and submit bugs, please check the Beta Programs page regularly and fill out the survey for the product you are interested in participating.

Tip: To increase your chances on getting access, be sure to include a URL of a "sample of your work".

Macromedia Beta Programs
http://www.macromedia.com/support/programs/beta.html