initial gripes with new Flash CS3 ui

May 9, 2007

I know – I’m turning into Victor Meldrew. I can’t seem to help it. Should Adobe sort out the current licensing and pricing nightmare I’m going through, I’m sure I will become more chilled.

While others have been hung up on the new icons, personally I have no issue with them. They remind me of Rowntrees Tooty Frooties – which is not a bad thing! My issues (admittedly minor) are with some of the work on the new user interface.

I can appreciate the general investment in improving the UI. However I find some of the additions odd, and on my system some seem poorly implemented?

1. Introduction of Windows style controls on the Mac.

Most of the palettes introduce a collapse control (-) and close control (x) in the top right-hand corner. Mac convention is for the close control to be top left control and in both cases I think aqua controls and positioning would have been better – more consistent with other (non Adobe) applications.

I also find it strange that most palettes introduce this new arrangement, but other ‘windows’ retain the standard Mac behaviour (e.g. document windows and the control window). Mixing it up in this way just feels odd.

debug palettecontroller palette

2. Palette drag

When dragging a palette, it will go semi-transparent. Potentially useful – being able to see what will be covered up before dropping the palette into position. This is also part of the softening of the UI and should enrich the user experience. But on my system, when the mouse is released, the palette disappears briefly before being re-drawn opaque. This ‘flicker’ when a palette is released is plain ugly and detracts hugely from the user-experience. Until it is fixed I would have rather not bother with semi-transparent efforts.

I guess this might be an issue with my system being quite old? (Mac G4 Dual 1GHz Mirror).

3. Welcome panel links to the Adobe site are not working as intended

I think this is just an issue of the Adobe site not having been updated to service the links. You’ll find that from the Flash Welcome window, clicking on either “Getting started ››” or “New features ››” simply dumps the user at the flash product page. The problem seems to be server-side. The pages which flash attempts to take you to, simply re-direct back to the product page.

We fare slightly better with “Resources ››”. However most of the content on that page is written for FlashMX 2004 or Flash 8. I think by now there should be some CS3 articles on there.

Hopefully that’s the end of today’s grumpiness. Although I just read the SaveAs Gotcha written up by Aral. 😦


CS3 trial versions now available for download

May 8, 2007


Not sure why they couldn’t have been ready when the product shipped? But they are there now.

Now I just need to persuade Adobe UK Licensing that my MVLP Studio 8, 24 month subscription sold to me when my DEVNET account expired does in-fact cover this upgrade to CS3 Web Standard. I’ve been playing email ping-pong with them over this for the past couple of weeks. Hopefully this will be resolved before my trial versions expire!

are adobe ripping off UK cusotmers?

April 5, 2007

If you read my earlier post, you’ll know I tend to think they are.

The software is great. I am happy to pay for it. I just don’t see why I should pay so much more for being British. My opinion of the reasons given: “Non Sequitur”.

El-reg are now highlighting this with respect to CS 3.

It’s just not cricket! 😦

A question for Steve Burnard on the 17th I think.

Update (09/04/2007):

Update (19/04/2007):

Aral Balkan recently wrote an article around this subject. It and its comments are worth a read. I’m hoping that Adobe will listen and act, rather than trot out a stream of excuses.

adobe visit lfpug

April 2, 2007

Adobe Special – 17th April 2007

Presenters from Adobe: Mike Downey and Steve Burnard.

One not to miss!

flash button sound disobeys master volume

March 27, 2007

Ok, this I am sure is an old one, and has probably been blogged countless times before, but it bit me for the first time last night and googling didn’t turn up any useful results.

The scenario:

I’ve been working on a container movie. It’s job is to hold a master navigation control and to load content movies developed by a third party, based on user actions. In addition it plays a sound track.

It contains a mute button which controls a Sound object created with a line such as mySoundControl = new Sound( this ); and then mySoundControl.setVolume();

On the face of it, it controls the volume very well. Including the time-line sounds within the content movies.

The problem: We found that certain items in the content movies triggered sounds independently of the master volume and simply disobeyed the volume. The common factor in each of these was that they were button symbols each with a sound applied directly to the over frame.

The solution: quite simply was to create movie-clip symbols containing the sounds, and replace the over frame sound with an instance of the new movie-clip.

apple update includes flash player (9.0.28)…

March 14, 2007

If, as suggested by JD’s post, the latest Adobe Flash Player will continue to be included in Apple System updates, this can only be a good thing for shoring-up and keeping the installed base current.

Unfortunately this morning’s update trampled over my debug player (already at version 9.0.28) replacing it with the standard plug-in. This is going to hit loads of developers similarly. It would be nice if Apple could add a rule to the updater to respect the presence of the debug player. That said, it isn’t a big deal to simply re-run the player’s installer from the Adobe Flex Builder 2 ‘Player’ folder.

LFPUG looking good yet again…

March 1, 2007

Accessibility was always one of my chief concerns back when my work was XHTML/CSS. Since moving more into ActionScript development it has I’m afraid to say slipped somewhat, relying on the usual approach of Flash site with HTML backup. Niqui’s presentation I hope will help me get back into the habit of integrating accessibility into the process and maybe get away from needing a HTML backup?

The LFPUG presentations 29th March 2007

  • A Usability Approach to Accessible Flash (19:00 – 20:00) – Niqui Merret
  • Lighten up: Rediscovering Fun ( 20:15 – 21:15 ) – Aral Balkan