Archive for May, 2008

Fireworks jam session live via Connect in 10 minutes!

I canceled the Fireworks jam session when our AXNA server was in transition to a new home. Today, we’ll kick these sessions back into gear and take a closer look at the Fireworks public beta on Adobe labs!

See ya in a few minutes:

Adobe MAX comes to San Francisco

Folks – Just around the corner is the famous MAX conference aka Adobe MAX 2008. I have to admit this is by far the one event I can’t miss even as a Adobe employee. It’s an amazing place to collab and learn new techniques you never knew possible. I love feeling the energy and excitement from everyone that attends the conference and since its in San Francisco there is no telling what will happen! There will be over 200 sessions and 50 labs + plus pre-event labs…phew I hope I can maintain during this event. 🙂

On the plus side for me at least the convention center is only a couple blocks away from my casa. I was thinking of throwing a Fireworks party (with no "real" fireworks people) if anyone is interested and wants to hang out with Fireworkers.

Get your reservation now, dont wait! I know a lot of you will wait till the last minute and then realize its too late. (slackers!)

Adobe MAX 2008

Adobe Fireworks user group meeting tonight!

Tonight is the night folks for Fire on the Bay!

Tuesday, May 27th, 2008 6:30pm @ the mothership in San Francisco

If you are not in the San Francisco bay area and want to get a glimpse of Adobe Fireworks public beta in all its glory and can’t attend in person…then attend the Connect session.

Take note of a few features and enhancements that will be demo’d tonight in the Fireworks beta below. (List from release notes)


File Open, Save and Close Improvements
A large amount of time went into re-architecting how documents are opened, saved or closed. The improvements will be noticed once you open an existing document created in Fireworks version CS3 or below in the Fireworks beta and then save and reopen the document.

Resolved Complex Memory Leaks
Many legacy and newly introduced memory leaks in CS3 have been resolved in the next version of Fireworks.

Vista Support
Resolved critical performance issues that existed in Fireworks CS3 using the brush tool or any tool that displayed a preview of the affected area. Vista performance was a priority for the engineering team to resolve based on the feedback in the Fireworks support forum.

Faster load time
Documents containing a lot of pages, layers, states and symbols will now operate smoother than before. The reaction time has been improved when switching between Pages and/or States.

Asynchronous saving
With asynchronous saving you now have the ability to save a large document and continue working on that document or a different document while the large document is still saving.


User Interface
From Mac to PC, experience a consistent look and feel. The Fireworks beta has caught up with CS3 and has gone above and beyond to sport the new interface. Enjoy features like support for multiple monitors, full screen mode and collapsible panels enabling you to have more screen width to work with on those wider designs.

Smart Guides
Reap benefits like quickly being able to position objects with other objects including slices without using the Align panel. Hold down shift and experience the new dynamic values (width/height between guides) when updating or creating the positioning of guides.

Tooltips are everywhere! No need to constantly look at the property Inspector when positioning objects. Tooltips will give you a heads up display of the X and Y location in real time.

Preferences Dialog
Easily modify preferences with the new dialog, consistent with Flash preferences. Set custom grid size that is remembered with every new document or set guides and grids to a custom color in one central location.

Photoshop Import Dialog
Customize various options when importing Photoshop documents such as choosing a layer comp state or retaining custom shapes (vectors) or even choosing to preserve the appearance of clipping masks.

Updated Layers, Pages and States panels
Right-click on any object, layer, page or state and quickly access properties that were only available in the panel options menu in CS3 and below.

Live Gradients, Patterns, and Masks
Work with gradients real time on the canvas. No longer do you need to drag and drop just to preview the placement of the gradient on an object. All gradient types are supported. Patterns and masks also support the new feature.

New Workflows

Adobe Text Engine
Many new enhancements have been integrated; such as retaining the fidelity of your Photoshop or Illustrator designs with text. Support for Ligatures and font style. Flowing text inside a closed path has been implemented.

AIR content Preview and Creation
Preview the prototype as an AIR application to quickly test interaction and usability and then package the prototype and send it for instant feedback before developing the actual application in Flex, Flash or HTML.

Export to Adobe PDF
Export a clickable prototype as an interactive Acrobat PDF. No need to send around a folder of HTML files and images or post them on a server for review. Easily collect comments from reviewers using a single PDF document.

Symbol improvements
Edit-in-place for symbols is now supported. Symbols architecture has been completely re-architected to support better performance and the ability to see live updates across symbol instances when editing a symbol in place.

Style improvements
Style sets are now supported and apply styles that can be linked to various shapes and objects in the current document. Multiple documents open at the same time will exhibit the styles within them using the dropdown menu in Styles panel. Access current document styles and use options in the property inspector to quickly redefine, break link, delete or override the style. New style sets have also been included.

CSS and Images Export
Export standards based CSS layout designs that can be further tweaked in Dreamweaver using an extended version of Smart CSS for Fireworks. A new slice type called Background image is now supported. CSS Stylesheet is automatically externalized with the option to include the CSS within the current document. Easily position the layout by using new options to left, center or right align right from Fireworks. Text outside of slices will be retained as HTML text. HTML rich symbols export as HTML controls!

New Tools

9-Slice Scaling Transform Tool
Quickly select an object or even a combination of symbol, vector and bitmap objects and scale them using the same technology that exists in Symbols, however, now use the technology as a transform tool.

Improved Rectangle Tool
New and improved rectangle primitive has better support for 9-slice enabled symbols and the new option to select pixels versus percentage of rounded corners. Now scale the rectangle and retain pixel perfect rounded corners on the rectangle.

Arrow Line Auto Shape Tool
Easily point to a location in the document or change the Arrowhead type easily in one click.

Measurement Auto Shape Tool
Quickly create visual measurements between objects for projects such as creating style guide specifications for engineering teams.

New Commands

Demo Current Document
In a time crunch? The command will quickly export out a simple XML file with JPG images linked to a Flash-based presentation viewer. Present the presentation to your clients in person or upload the package to a server and send a link to the client for review. Also, create your own presentation player in Flash that hooks into the XML file for custom styled presentations that effectively show your company’s brand.

Export to FXG
This is an export script that generates vector graphics code for future use with next-generation Flash Player authoring applications. Currently, we are not looking for feedback on this command.

Take Screenshot (Windows only)
Now take pixel-precise screenshots using the new Take Screenshot command. Easily navigate to the window or screen you would like to screenshot and once you select the area, go back in Fireworks and paste in the screenshot.

Updated Commands

Add Arrowheads
Upgraded to ActionScript 3 to support better performance and sports a new interface. Apply Arrowheads on strokes and preview them in real time before applying the command.

Add Picture Frame
Upgraded to ActionScript 3 and supports a new interface to match the overall Fireworks new user interface.

Auto Vector Mask (Formerly Fade Image)
Supports a new interface with a real time preview to quickly see the mask applied to the image or vector object.

Twist and Fade
Apply a slew of new effects with optional randomization on each property. Upgraded to ActionScript 3 to support better performance Twist and Fade now allows you to save presets and even re-open an object to modify the applied effect. Another great enhancement is to preview the effect real time on the canvas without closing the panel.

Updated Command Panels

Upgraded to ActionScript 3 and sporting a new interface. A major improvement is support with undo history steps. Now you can undo a step using a keyboard shortcut. Be precise when distributing objects by entering a numerical value. No need to manually select an option to modify anchor points. When a anchor point is selected the Align panel will update automatically to reflect anchor point options.

Auto Shape Properties
Upgraded to ActionScript 3 and sporting a new interface to fit within the Property Inspector location of the user interface.

Color Palette
Support for 5 colors. A new interface overhaul that makes the panel more usable and feel like the overall new user interface. The panel has also been upgraded to ActionScript 3 for better performance. Color Wheel is more reactive with real time preview of color swatches. Easily switch between Selector, Mixer and Blender options.

Special Characters
Upgraded to ActionScript 3 with new interface.

Symbol Properties
Upgraded to ActionScript 3 and sporting a new interface to fit within the Property Inspector location of the user interface.

Amazing new features for intermediate and advanced users. The path panel has exposed more functionality that allows you to edit vectors with more precision then ever before. Upgraded to ActionScript 3 and supporting a new user interface this panel will be invaluable and will make you a vector editing wizard.

Also, take note extension developers can use ActionScript 3 and even customize the icon that displays their panel in Fireworks!

Adobe Fireworks beta is released on Labs!

I’m excited to announce the public beta release of Adobe Fireworks and hope you enjoy the bug fixes, enhancements, new user interface and features! While your downloading the beta check out the Connect recording below for a last minute demo of the beta:

Demo of current build 388