Flash The Ripper

Life Around Technology

Flash Game License and getting sponsorship with a flash game

If you are a Game Maker, and still not completely sure about how to sell your game(s), then following short article from Lorenz Games is for you: How to Get a Sponsorship with a Flash Game.

 

It is about how to make your offer to the game portals aside from the slow Flash Game License Bids, including a list of available resources with direct email links for faster communication (recommended by Lorenz), tips on composing email with the offer and important step of choosing the right game license (exclusive or non-exclusive).

 

Overall, this post may be useful even if you are not making flash games right now. Maybe you will decide to try out this way of monetizing your work after figuring out that Huge Flash Games Industry 

ColdFusion 8 & AJAX & Flex3

Ashwin Mathew made an online presentation dedicated to developing AJAX Applications in ColdFusion 8 (it was 21st May 2008 at the Bay Area ColdFusion User Group). You can see the full Adobe Connect recording complete with chat and other Connect features here: ColdFusion 8 AJAX by Ashwin Mathew.

 

Also, there’s article in the Adobe Developer center with an overview of Ajax features in ColdFusion 8.

 

To get even deeper with this subject, you may want to read Flex 3 vs ColdFusion 8 Ajax article by Dale Fraser. He compares different UI features available in Flex 3 and ColdFusion 8 AJAX, and makes his verdict about pros and cons of both approaches.

Google 3D Maps Adobe AIR Application v 0.5

Here’s the promised update: Google 3D Maps Adobe AIR Application, version 0.5. The main subject of this update is to target the Release Version of the Adobe AIR Runtime – you’ll need it to run this app. Sorry for this long delay.
Download Google 3D Maps Adobe AIR App v0.5, source flies (and bugs) are included 

About Google 3D Maps on Air: This app utilizes the Papervision3D engine, Google Maps and Adobe AIR HTML component to create the interactive planar and spherical maps from html pages loaded from Google Maps.

Actually, it can operate at any other web page in the same way. Now I’m going to implement the same functionality within Adobe Flex, it just became possible because of recently released the Google Maps API for Flash.

Have fun and nice weekend 

Vote for crossdomain.xml for Google APIs and services

Would you like to access Google APIs and services from your RIA-application? If you would, you would also like to vote for this feature request: Add crossdomain.xml for Google Accounts.

To vote, just click the star icon to the right from “Issue 406:” text. You also may write a comment if you wish (this is optional; but voting for crossdomain feature is mandatory! 

Please: do not comment with “+1″-like phrases. It makes comment feed useless for those who really interested in reading it (yes, I know such people). And I guess “+1″ commenting techniques will only make that Google employee who makes the decision about taking this issue into consideration think it is not very important issue just because it is supported only by strange crowd of noobs.

But we are not noobs, aren’t we?

Vote For Flash Player Issues, If You Love It

Adobe made a great step forward and opened its JIRA for voting for Flash Player related bugs, feature requests and other issues. Actually, you can submit your own bug to the JIRA, but it is very and only good practice to browse the bugs database first and make sure you aren’t going to clone some other’s bug using your own interpretation. That’s why it is usually said in uppercase that you can VOTE for bugs, and then in lowercase said that you can add your own too. But you can. Both options are cool ones ??� let’s just use them in right way.

It is Justin Everett-Church who told us about this new Adobe JIRA Flash Player section.

Just for the record ??� there are also ASC (compiler) and whole Flex SDK sections in Adobe JIRA.

Non-casual game, finally!

I guess you played a lot of games, sophisticated too. But you probably never played this one. Literally speaking, “Polcarstva.net” is a simple quest game. There’s no 3D, no social features, no user registration or something web20 either. But it seems there’s a heart in the game. And there’s… there’s the flash in this piece of art, created by Denis Stepkin. Click to play:

…and also, there’s Sigur Ros soundtrack

RIA Newsletter from the Source. I’m signing up

Maybe you’ll want to sign to it up too: Adobe RIA newsletter with info on Adobe RIA technologies and software updates, including Adobe Flex and Adobe AIR.

 

Not very long description, but let’s see what it will be. At least, it is useful to get information from its source and get it fast (pretend to get it first). I wonder to see this RIA newsletter and compare this new source of information to Adobe Edge, which is pretty cool one.

 

BTW, there’s official Blog of www.UseAdobe.com which usually tells such good news like this one and like, you know, Adobe AIR for Linux and ways of promoting Flex Applications.

 

BTW BTW, have you subscribed to the Flex Showcase RSS Feed?

Meet Alternativa Flash Game Platform

I was writing about Alternativa Game project from their very beginning for some time, trying to depict the growth of great project with talented people behind it.

The most recent news about this development are the coolest too: Alternativa Game becomes Alternativa Platform. This happened nearly a month after their meeting with Oddcast, a well-known company in the avatar platforms world. Please find details in the Alternativa blog:

Alternativa Platform
We have guests from Oddcast

UAFPUG – Ukrainian Adobe Flash Platform User Group #1 – done!

We did it. First official meeting of UAFPUG in Kharkiv, Ukraine, 15 March 2008.
Please read the brief reports with a pair of photos from Andriy ‘JabbyPanda’ Panas and Sergey Kovalev (in English  ) Also, there’s some are nice photos of Kharkiv and meeting from Denis ‘mrJazz’ Sheremetov and Roman ‘NoubaSE’ Shuper.

There were 3 speeches at all: “Event Model In AS3″ by Eldar Prilutsky, “FMS2 & What’s New In FMS3″ by Denis Papazoff and “Using PureMVC Framework In The Development Of Map Application” by Rostislav Siryk (it’s me).

I was very happy to host this first meeting in the office of my company, GlobalLogic (ex-Validio Ukraine). A lot of respect to our VP of Software Development Yury Landgraf who very kindly responded to this idea, and to Anastasia Logvinova from our HR department — she helped me a lot regarding organization. And respect for everyone of 45 developers who was there!

Great news! Today, Adobe officially welcomed (in Ukrainian) the UAFPUG (Ukrainian Adobe Flash Platform User Group) to the Adobe?????s User Group Program, putting the UAFPUG details on the Adobe’s official page.

Thank you, Adobe!

As UAFPUG, we’re having the next meeting 15 March, 2008 in Kharkiv (with some sponsorship of my company ????? GlobablLogic Ukraine). There’s 31 members registered already to participate in this meeting and no less than 4 speeches are being prepared.

UAWEB 2008 Online Broadcast, Flex Speech starts at 3:15 PM EET (Kiev, Ukraine time)

First Ukrainian Conference Of Web Developers is being broadcasted. There’s two Flash Platform Speeches:

3:15-3:50 PM EET “RIA in Flex Perspective” by Alexey Zatvornitski and Sergey Kovalev.
[ – cofee-break – ]
4:15-4:50 PM EET “Adobe AIR. Desktop applications for web developers” by Evgen Tyutyunnyk.

Also, there’s an “Silverlight 2.0 At First Sight” speech by Sergey Baydachnuy tomorrow March 28 at 5:30-6:05 PM EET (also, see the full UAWEB 2008 conference agenda). Sorry ??� all in Ukrainian

Flex Elections: vote for Flex bugs to help them disappear

Update: Is this worthy to become a feature request: Old-looking Flex 3 Apps?

Matt Chotin makes a great moment for everyone who want to improve our beloved Flex technology and so put more power in the Flash Platform: today is the Flex Elections day! This means you are unbelievably welcome to vote for any of the Flex Bugs / Features in the Adobe JIRA Flex Bug-tracking System, even for issues with “Deferred” status. Go and help Adobe to help You!

If you’re unsure how to vote for Flex bugs / feature requests, please find details in the Matt’s entry: Vote for Flex Bugs and Feature Requests on Super Tuesday.

// via Ryan Stewart‘s entry on Flex Bugs.

Flex 3 ??� New Cool Apps, But Why They Are Looking So Old?

I think Flex 3 Release version should have a new default theme for flex applications. Below is explanation, why.

Flex 3 is Really Better Than Flex 2, But It Should Be More Evident

I’m in love with Flex 3. Using it from beta to beta, I see how it becomes mature, and how Flex apps performance is growing. A lot of buzz will follow the Flex 3 Release, surely. And there’s a lot of people who saw the Flex 2 and will compare it with Flex 3. I guess a lot of them haven’t followed by the Flex 3 betas, being involved in tight development of their current Flex 2 projects. They expect to see something new and worthy of upgrade in the Flex 3 Release.
Now, they’re looking at the new Flex 3 samples. They’re seeing the coolness, but samples are visually equal to the Flex 2! So, the potential of the quick recognition of new Flex 3 features is decreased by it’s old Flex 2 default theme.

The Power of First Sight

It is all about people’s attention: when you see something familiar, but looking as new, you expect it to work as something new. And, from other hand, when you see something new, but looking too familiar at the first sight, you expect it to be not so new as it could be. Now: when Flex 2 developer looks at the Flex 3 apps with its default skin used, he still sees good old Flex 2 app. He realizes it is Flex 3, but he sees Flex 2. Cognitive conflict? Some say we get 80% of info through the eyes.
The less developers’ recognition of Flex 3 as really new one, the less experiments with Flex 3, the less buzz, the less community growth.

One More Reason: Flex 2 Default Skin is Just Too Old

More than year ago, Flex 2 was released. Two years have gone, but Flex apps default theme look exactly the same. However, graphic design trends aren’t something frozen. Flex RIAs, as cutting edge apps, should not look as they were two years ago. It’s just so… Web 1.9.9 

New Flex 3 Default Theme As a Part of Flex Microevangelism

Good news is that Adobe’s Evangelists already use the new Flex skins in their demos: for example, there’s cool black theme in BlazeBench by James Ward. The same theme is used in the Flex Builder 3 betas, look at welcome screen. Maybe Adobe’s preparing some cool design surprise for the community? I don’t know, but back to the “microevangelism”: I use this term to depict any Flex Evangelization which comes not from Adobe’s evangelists directly, but is spawned by the developers who can even don’t realize it. I mean: each Flex 3 developer putting his new cool Flex 3 application online unintentionally (or not) becomes the microevangelist, right? But: putting experiments online, developers usually don’t care much about their look and feel, functionality comes first, and it is as it should be with experiments. Developers rarely use the non-default skins in their experiments, so taking into account that there’s a huge quantity of simple flex samples made by developers, it is really important for Adobe to force the new look-and-feel of the new Flex 3 samples, which will be spawned over the web shortly after Flex 3 Release. Adobe, just color the seeds of flex and you’ll gather something more explosive than with old theme.

Is It Hard to Make New Default Theme for The Flex 3?

Flex has such powerful skinning mechanism, that there’s a lot of ready-to-use free cool Flex skins. But: if you’re Flex Developer and want to use cool skin, you must 1) Know where to get the skin 2) Download it 3) Apply it. Too many clicks for simple experiments. It seems to be not very hard for Adobe to ship Flex 3 with new default theme pre-installed, right?
Even more cool is the option for the developer to choose theme from the combo-box with 2-3 themes ready. Well, maybe it is hard to make new default theme now… but I dream of it!
Adobe, please don’t miss the opportunity to make greater impact on RIA with not very much of additional effort!

Flex Development with JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA ??� really?

The most recent announcement in the JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA blog describes the advanced Flex development features available in the IDEA 7.0.3 (last version at the moment, you can download it through via the Early Access Program, Selena project).

The IDEA’s Flex development features set includes advanced refactoring, MXML and AS code completions, bottlenecks diagnostics and more ??� please find info in the original blog entry, there’s also the links to the tutorial and sample source files.
Flex support in IDEA is long-awaited feature, and now it seems to be nearly complete.
Question: has anyone tried IDEA 7.0.3 in Flex development, and if you did, what can you say? Even if you didn’t ??� any opinions?

Alternativa Game flies into 2008 on steroids

Game named “Alternativa” goes further in development and quality quickly. Anton Volkov and team not just added some features to the project. Guys are really critical about their results and able to make BIG changes in their own 3D game engine. Their recent dynamic BSP-tree implementation is made with aim to optimize 3D scene objects sorting by depth and visibility regarding camera. This is really much more quick than the previous version! BTW, this is version 5.0 of the engine.

Then they implemented normal mapping to get their 3D surfaces curved and their sprites lighted in 3D(!); Their mos recent update at the moment is the parallax effect.

Wish Alternativa Game to become the Game of 2008. And God bless your servers!

AIRApps.net became O2Apps.com. Wish them a bit of traffic!

The contest for the best new name for AIRApps is finished. Congrats to the Mr. Mike Hays of SOHOS Network ??� he got the Adobe CS3 Master Collection as a prize! He suggested the best new name which is O2apps.com (I shouldn’t have propose O2Apps.net!  )

So, AIRApps.net is now O2Apps.com. Go to the new domain, feel comfortable: all your credentials and data are kept the same excluding the domain name. The site design is updated: it was red with bit of jpeg artifacts, it is blue and clear now.

I wonder how easy they transfered the whole big and complex site to the new domain. This means that system design was close to perfect, right?

Google makes love to Flex with its SearchMash application

Google rolled out the Flex version of its SearchMash, which was already mentioned not only by Adobeans (Ryan Stewart, Mike Potter, James Ward) but by so popular TechCrunch too. The good recognition of Flash Platform opportunities.

I’m thinking about motivation behind Google’s playing with Flex. The strong points of Flex technology (SearchMash is developed in) is big set of ready-to-use UI components (=fast application prototyping), high debugging capabilities, compile-time error checking, strong variable typing and overall proximity of ActionScript3 language to the latest ECMAScript implementation, which brings AS3 far towards the best practices of architecture and coding. Javascript2 will have set of new features in future, while many of them are already well-implemented in AS3, today. So, making AS3 application, Google might foresees the upcoming JS2 in Firefox 3/4.

Moreover, Tamarin project brings both AS and JS languages even closer together, so implementing SearchMash today in AS3/Flash might make future migration to the Javascript3 easier.

Flickr loves Flash: crossdomain.xml finally added to the Flickr Image Server

Bored using proxies to get images from Flickr? Troubles no more. Flickr added crossdomain.xml to their Image Server to make life of Flash Platform Developers easier. The files are located here:

  • http://static.flickr.com/crossdomain.xml
  • http://farm2.static.flickr.com/crossdomain.xml

Now your BitmapData can access any part of any Flickr image.

Follow the details at the Yahoo! Flash Blog: Flickr Now Even More Flash-friendly. There’s also a flash illustration of extra benefits which this update brings to processing Flickr images with high quality. Thank you Yahoo Flash Team and Flickr Friendly team too!

And, as I’ve heard through the grapevine recently, Google is going to add crossdomain.xml to the Google Maps. Are there any details on this lovely new feature, or this is old news already?

Meet the FDJ: Flex Developer’s Journal at flex.SYS-CON.com

Now Flex Developers have the whole Flex Developer’s Journal section and corresponding top-level menu at the famous SYS-CON Media website. It is just the top level menu item between the “WEB2.0″ and “LINUX” ones. Weeeeehooooo!

Transmit all your positive waves toward the Yakov Fain. He’s a Editor-in-Chief of this whole great new section.

And a lot of respect goes to the other authors who published numerous advanced Flex Articles at SYS-CON before and thanks to Yakov again for his strong efforts in growing this new FLEX SYS-CON trend, bringing it really alive and providing massive help to talented Flex experts in publishing their articles, e.g. Advanced Ant for Adobe Flex Projects (How to use Ant to automate HTML wrappers creation and more) by Konstantin Kovalev.

Also, Yakov is the co-author of one of the best Flex Development Books ever — you know.

New FDJ authors are invided – read Yakov’s Message From the Editor-in-Chief of Flex Developer’s Journal for details.

God, save the Flex.

Cannot create the database because MKSS.EXE could not be located – Visual SourceSafe says when you try to create the new database but Administrative Tools was not set up during custom install

Such error I’ve got today when tried to create the VSS database for one of my projects, at the very last step of database creation wizard. As for me, this is pretty unfriendly behavior: application should warn me of such issues at the very first step, not just give me a poor error window at the very last one, despite the fact there’s not vary much steps in “Create new database” wizard at all.

Sometimes I use Miscrosoft Visual SourceSafe when working with .NET developers at the same projects or project requirements imply the usage of VSS.

Last time I used VSS pretty far ago, nearly two years. Today I installed it again to store the project’s files in the VSS database. Usually I’ve been accessing the database created earlier by other developer or by admin, so I’ve never installed “Administrative Tools” with VSS when performed a custom install. This time, I should have create the databese by myself and when I’ve tried to do so, the “Cannot create the database because MKSS.EXE could not be located” error appeared at the very last step of the process, when I pressed the “Finish” button.

I’ve googled for the exact phrase made from error text, and found no results. This is strange. Is it only me who got such error at all? Then I googled just for “MKSS.EXE” and found “How To Create a New Database in Visual SourceSafe” article from Microsoft. Mkss.exe should be located in the Win32 directory in Visual SourceSafe – there was stated. So I suggested “Administrative Tools” when performing custom install is needed, run setup.exe from VSS distributive folder again, selected “Add or remove features”, then checked “Administrative Tools” and that’s all. Then succesfully created the database.

Happy end, but it would be much better to have more friendly workflow and help in such situations.

New Online 3D Alternativa Game – in development, but very promising

Meet the Alternativa Game Blog ??� regular news from the developers team of upcoming flash 3D online game.

Suprise: reasonably or not, they do not use Papervision3D developing their own engine because it is heavily optimized for the game needs as they said. They develop unique approaches like texture lighting with highlights, texture objects and even its own 3D editor (hello, Google SketchUp). There also advanced shading tricks like special corners processing ??� you can see the more dark shadows in the corners in action here as well as other abovementioned stuff.

Also, there’s a lot of already created custom game interactive objects like TV, phone, photocamera, watches, newspaper, and more ??� check the Alternativa Game project’s blog, you will see a lot of demos there. Pretty promising and good already. Also, they may release their game 3d engine as public later.