December 23, 2006

Flash runs inside Photoshop CS3!

Psst… Wanna watch "PhotoshopTV" clips inside Photoshop itself?  How about making a script that can access the network, upload/download data*, and control Photoshop?

Sorry if I’m a bit worked up, but I love reporting that the Photoshop CS3 beta supports running Flash SWF files as script interfaces. Whereas in CS2 scripts can feature fairly simple UIs (e.g. the Image Processor), in CS3 they’ll be able to take advantage of all the richness of Flash and Flex.  To see it in action, download this sample** (with MXML source), unzip it, and put the contents into "Adobe Photoshop CS3/Presets/Scripts."  You’ll be able to use it to run other scripts and even watch streaming video.  For immediate gratification, here are a couple of screenshots.

So, why do I think this is a big deal?  For starters, we have to make developing for Photoshop radically easier and faster.  If you want to make a new component for Yahoo Widgets (neĆ© Konfabulator), you simply run a script in Photoshop; compare that to the task of building a Photoshop plug-in.  Photoshop will grow inexorably larger and more powerful, and to keep it usable we need to make it trivial to tune the app to particular needs/tastes.  That means easy extensibility & customization (up-level what you need, get rid of what you don’t).  It’s here that Flash & Flex can play a great role, enabling fast, rich, lightweight, cross-platform development.

Supporting SWFs in scripts is just one step, but it’s a big one.  Displaying a video stream might seem odd, but I’ve got some big designs on ways we can connect people through the apps, make learning immediate, and more.  Embedding the Flash Player across the Adobe product line gives us a way to enable rich widgets that run across applications & platforms.  Exciting times ahead.

* With your permission, of course.
** Note that there’s a bug with display of dynamic data on Intel Macs

5:16 PM | Permalink | Comments [18]

Sculptures in light

This is the season of lights, so it seems fitting to illuminate some recent finds:

  • United Visual Artists has created Volume, a super-cool interactive installation that "responds spectacularly to human movement, creating a series of audio-visual experiences." Tons of great photos are on their site (note the little slideshow controls under the main image), and you can see the movement in this video (also in high res from Motionographer). [Via]
  • The Orb is a high-speed glowing sculpture, formed by 64 LEDs spinning at 1600 RPM. [Via]
  • Architect Rand Elliott has been commissioned to create POPS, a 66-foot, LED-clad pop bottle that will sit alongside Route 66. Metropolis Magazine has the story, along with shots of Elliott’s work, including a wireframe of POPS and the 100-foot-high Beacon of Light at the Oklahoma Health Center.  See also shots of POPS being erected. [Via Jack Liggett]
  • Closer to earth but still fun, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is made of Christmas lights [Via]
10:22 AM | Permalink | Comments [1]
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