Posts in Category "Flash"

Prolific Powerhouse People: Teacher, Mike Skocko and the Mac Lab

Mike Skocko Keeps learning exciting and in balance in his Mac Lab

Valhalla High School teacher Mike Skocko keeps learning exciting and in balance in his Mac Lab.

 When it comes to learning Adobe software and technologies there is a fantastic cornucopia of terrific choices out there: great books, in-person seminars, online webinars, weekend hands on intensives and much, much more. I’m a visual learner so when it comes to my own way of learning Adobe tools I tend to gravitate towards one of the super online video offerings from companies like: KelbyTraining.com, VTC.com, TotalTraining.com, AtomicLearning.com, Lynda.com or our very own Adobe TV.

With the exception of Adobe TV mentioned above all of these training companies offer deep discounted education pricing to educators who subscribe to their offerings and in my humble opinion they are a super value. But what if I told you there is another source of terrific online video training available on Adobe tools and to access the videos it won’t cost you a dime?

Enter amazing prolific powerhouse Mike Skocko (pronounced skotch-ko) of Valhalla High School in El Cajon California who has produced and posted over 3,000 online video tutorials (no that’s not a typo – 3,000 and counting!) covering a wide range of Adobe tools and technologies. Best part, they’re totally FREE to watch and learn from. In fact Mike already has close to 300 videos on many of the current Adobe CS5 tools posted online and adds new ones daily.

Mike stated to me recently (and in the most humble way) he would have had near five hundred videos posted on the Adobe CS5 tools by now but since he was recently derailed by being accepted into Adobe’s Education Leaders (AEL) program and simultaneously started work on a Masters Program along with his fulltime teaching duties at Valhalla High, he’s only been able to add one video tutorial post per day. One per day!?  Five per week!?  Twenty per month!? Are you kidding me Mike!? I’m lucky if I can find the time to write three blog posts here on the Adobe Education Technologies Blog per month! So now dear blog readers you know why Mike has been picked by me as a Prolific Powerhouse Person here on our blog.

I encourage you to check out Mike’s excellent videos on Adobe’s software tools and share this great and free learning resource with your students and education associates far and wide.

The Mac Lab’s Online Adobe Software Tutorials can be found HERE.

Check out a cool interview Mike conducted with one of his former Students HERE.

Project Rome for Education, public preview announced today


We’re excited to finally announce Project ROME for Education. Available as a pilot program for school districts, Project ROME for Education lets students and educators express, collaborate and communicate ideas using graphics, photos, text, video, audio and animation in a simple, unified content creation and publishing environment to enhance the learning experience.   Project ROME for Education is designed specifically for students in classroom settings.

If you are interested in having your school district or institution participate, please go to http://rome.adobe.com/education and register.  Eligibility criteria must be met for program acceptance.  A member of the Adobe Education will contact qualified applicants with further information.  Those in education who wish to try out Project ROME for Education individually can also go to http://rome.adobe.com/education to download the offering as part of the free preview program.

Check back here soon for much more information on Project Rome for Education!


Adobe in Education: An Accessibility Guide

In recent years, the Education community has focusing increasingly on making all web content accessible to individual individuals with disabilities. Adobe® is an industry leader in accessibility and supports the creation of outstanding web experiences by encouraging web developers to produce rich, engaging content that is accessible to all. Adobe has also been focusing on this important task by improving and facilitating accessible content creation and consumption with its powerful design applications and productivity tools.

The information below references resources on our website that can help educators and authors understand the need for creating accessible content for an increasing diversity of users and screens. Not only will content creators learn more about how to optimize their workflows and effectively design a document that not only looks good, but they can also improve the experience as all users on a variety of screens and devices.

What is Accessibility?

Accessibility involves two key issues: first, how users with disabilities access electronic information, and second, how web content designers and developers enable web pages to function with assistive devices used by individuals with disabilities.

For the user with a disability, the challenge is to identify tools that provide the most convenient access to web-based and other electronic information. For the web content designer/developer, the challenge is to remove the obstacles that prevent accessibility tools from functioning effectively. In many cases, these challenges are relatively simple to overcome, but sometimes the solutions require some additional thought and effort.

For more information on Accessibility visit: http://www.adobe.com/accessibility/gettingstarted/accessibility.html

I have heard of Section 508 and the 508 standards. What are they?

Accessibility policies vary from country to country, but most countries, including those in the European Union, have adopted standards based on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). In the United States, Section 508 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act mandates that web content maintained by the federal government be made accessible to people with disabilities. This law is based on W3C Priority One checkpoints. Find more information at: http://www.adobe.com/accessibility/508standards.html

Where can I find the latest information about Adobe products and accessibility?

A great start to find out the latest information on Accessibility at Adobe is http://www.adobe.com/accessibility/. There you will find links and resources to examples compliance news, blogs, case studies, tips and tricks and more.

I have heard that Adobe Acrobat and Adobe Reader are very useful for working with and reading accessible content. Is that true?

Yes, unlike other PDF tools, Adobe® Acrobat® 9 and Reader® 9 software continue the tradition of providing strong accessibility support for Adobe PDF documents and forms. Acrobat 9 features a number of built-in accommodations for people with disabilities as well as support for users of assistive technologies.

Where can I find more detailed information about Adobe Acrobat and Reader’s roles in facilitating the creation and displaying of Accessible documents?

Are there any Adobe blogs that focus on Accessibility news and events?

Yes, visit the Adobe accessibility blog and join the discussion at: http://blogs.adobe.com/accessibility/

Which Adobe products support and encourage authors and developers in the production of accessible content?

Adobe seeks to provide products that support and encourage authors and developers in the production of accessible content. The latest information on these products can be found by clicking on these links.

Where can I find information on other Adobe applications and accessibility?

For information on additional applications please visit the Adobe Accessibility website at: http://www.adobe.com/accessibility/

Easy Flash with New Flash Catalyst!

Flash Catalyst Logo.jpg
I attend a lot of education conferences all over the U.S. as part of my job for Adobe Systems. Typically I will demonstrate our award winning tools to educators at these conferences in our trade show booth which usually has a small theater set up in it so conference attendees can watch half hour demos of our tools and learn all about the amazing features they have.
After my demonstrations I always get several folks who come up to me and ask the same two questions repeatedly no matter what conference I’m attending or in what part of the country I’m in. The first question typically is “Richard, where can I find affordable training on Adobe Tools?” In regards to this question I wrote a whole blog post about it here called Teacher’s Pet – A List of Affordable and Free Adobe Tools Training. The second question (which is the topic of this blog post) for the most part is “Richard, I love Adobe’s tools, but they have such a steep learning curve, especially Flash!”

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Some Widget fun with Captivate 4

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Adobe Captivate 4 has a new feature called “Widgets” which are a collection of Flash-created SWF files that you can add to your projects. Captivate ships with a bunch of them, and one of them in particular—the Certificate widget—is pretty fun. With it, you can offer a certificate to someone who passes a quiz you have created. There is even a button to print the certificate so you can proudly display your certificate of completion. We here at the Adobe Education Technologies blog built one called the Certificator, and you can see it in action by clicking the following link (link to the certificator: http://se.adobe.acrobat.com/certficator/). To learn more about how this was created, grab the Captivate project files, and start learning how to create your own widgets, read on. . .

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Creative Suite 4 for Criminal Justice

Guest post by Jim Hoerricks, Forensic Image/Video Analyst.
(Jim Hoerricks is a Photoshop Instructor, an Author, and a court qualified expert witness in Forensic Video Analysis who also happens to work for a law enforcement agency in one of the US’ major metropolitan areas)
I’ll start off today’s post by first thanking Rick Miller for inviting me to be today’s guest blogger, and by introducing myself. I’m Jim Hoerricks, Forensic Image / Video Analyst and best selling author of Forensic Photoshop – a comprehensive imaging workflow for forensic professionals (www.forensicphotoshopbook.com). I also blog at forensicphotoshop.blogspot.com. For more of my bio, check out the book’s link.
I’ve used Adobe products since the early/mid 1990’s. Some Adobe Products, like Pagemaker, I used before Adobe bought them from their respective owners.
Rick asked me to write a post about the Creative Suite and how it might benefit Criminal Justice students and practitioners. As always, I am happy to help.
So often, we think of Criminal Justice as laws, procedures, court cases, and lots of PT. (If you don’t know what PT stands for, get down and give me 20) I’m here to tell you that the state of modern policing is that … and much more. To illustrate my point, I’ll go down the list of Creative Suite products and show you how each piece fits perfectly within the Criminal Justice curriculum. By the time we’re done, I think that you’ll agree with me that owning the Creative Suite 4 Master Collection is the way to go.

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Use Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro to Create and Share Multimedia Experiences

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Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro PDF Portfolio Content Fusion

With Adobe Flash Player integration within the new Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro and Adobe Reader 9, PDF files can become far more than static documents and forms. PDF portfolios (which are special types of PDF files) can be created to deliver a wide range of engaging multimedia content to include music, photos, movies, Flash (SWF and FLV) content, 3D content, and much more. The interface used to experience the PDF portfolio content is a Flash-based navigator with different layouts. Steve Adler (Adobe Acrobat Specialist for Education) has a fantastic blog article explaining how to create PDF portfolios and their possible uses in K-12 and Higher Education environments. Below I have provided five PDF portfolio examples which you can download and view offline using the free Adobe Reader 9 or a trial version of Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro. Examples include:

Once you have viewed these PDF portfolios, try creating one yourself using Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro. You can use Steve Adler’s blog article as a guide or watch a recorded webinar. Also, there are new PDF portfolio navigator layouts you can download and start using for your projects.

Flash CS4: Motions Preset panel (Part 2)

In Part 1 of Flash CS4: Motions Preset panel, I introduced the Motion Presets panel and demonstrated how it allows you to save as a preset your animation and apply it to an object on the Stage. I also pointed out that we’ve provided a library of prebuilt animations that you can preview before applying.
Well, how about if you want to preview your custom preset? Fortunately Flash CS4 allows you to do precisely that, and in this post I’ll outline the steps.

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XFL: Bringing Designers and Developers Together Since 2008

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In a previous
Adobe Education Technologies blog article we examined how to use Adobe InDesign CS4 to create a visually rich layout, add interactivity with hyperlinks, buttons, and page transitions,
and then export to SWF. We were able to do all of this without using Adobe Flash Professional and Actionscript programming. The downside of this direct-to-SWF export is that there isn’t an easy way to edit the SWF file should we want to further modify it.

Now, Adobe InDesign CS4 allows designers to create multi-page layouts and then export to the new XFL (XML for Flash) file format. The XFL file can be opened directly in Adobe Flash CS4 Professional preserving layout and typographic fidelity. Then developers can enhance the file with animation, interactivity, and video. Let’s take a look at the workflow:

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