Archive for the ‘Flash’ Category

Introduction: Flash Google Maps API and Multi-touch

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

[Editor's note: From last year but multi-touch is still getting rolling.]

Republished from Cyna C Design Ideas blog.

There are many APIs out there to work with. If you start searching around Google, there are many people dedicated to helping people like you and me tie in different information and resources into Flash. It can take quite a long time just understanding a full API and be able to use ALL of it’s capabilities. But that idea is way down the road. If you are like me, it’s nice to find something to help you get off the ground.

Today I came across Emanuele Feronato‘s website, Italian geek and PROgrammer. He has a tutorial to get you started using the GoogleMaps API, so here is your first task in this tutorial:

1. Read Emanuele Feronato‘s tutorial and get Google Maps running in Flash.

Got it yet? Not yet? Don’t worry I took me a little while to get everything downloaded, hooked in and sorted out.

Got it now? Awesome! Set your API key and everything? Great. This tutorial I’m going to try something different. Last time, I built up to the final code step by step. This one, I’ll show you the final version of the code, and we’ll step through it. Let me know which type of tutorial you like better and in the future, I’ll try to keep a consistent style.

Continue reading at Cyna C Design . . .

Taking apart the federal budget (Wash Post)

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010

[Editor’s note: Great storytelling and numerical analysis of Obama’s 2010 federal budget from The Washington Post. The introductory charting is on a single axis making it easy to compare where the money comes from and where it goes. The next tabs dig deeper, focusing on historical trends (multiple axis) and a look at the surplus/deficit. Kudos to Karen, Laura, Wilson, Jackie! Brand X uses a Tree Map visualization instead.]

Republished from The Washington Post. Feb. 2, 2010.

Interact with the original at The Washington Post . . .

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Building iPad Applications with Flash (Adobe)

Friday, January 29th, 2010

[Editor’s note: No, there is no Flash player on the iPhone or the new iPad in Safari. But, just like AIR on the desktop, Adobe has figured out a way to wrap Flash SWFs in an app runtime so they’ll work on the new devices. Apparently part of Flash CS5, Packager for iPhone, announced at MAX 2009 conference, will be interesting to watch (or multi-touch).]

Republished from Adobe.

Today Apple announced the Apple iPad and like many of you, we at Adobe are looking forward to getting our hands on one of these devices. This is an exciting time to be a software designer with an explosion of new devices and we look forward to helping Flash developers and designers bring innovative applications to these devices using our tools and frameworks.

We announced the Packager for iPhone at MAX 2009 which will allow Flash developers to create native iPhone applications and will be available in the upcoming version of Flash Pro CS5. This technology enables developers to create applications for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad (though applications will not initially take direct advantage of iPad’s new screen resolution). It is our intent to make it possible for Flash developers to build applications that can take advantage of the increased screen size and resolution of the iPad.

Continue reading at Adobe . . .

Color Oracle Review + The Economist’s Red-Green Fixation

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010

Hisham Abboud over at the Curious Chap blog promo’d Color Oracle, the software that the talented Bernhard Jenny programmed (with my sometimes helpful nagging) for simulating color blindness.

No self-respecting programmer, UX practitioner, or web site designer should be without [Color Oracle]

Nice endorsement, thanks! Hisham uses an Apple iPhone website chart to emphasize his point: “My first brush with what one can do for color blind persons was a 2007 post by Greg Raiz. Greg described how Apple was using red and green circles (same shape) to illustrate which stores had iPhone availability, and how they later switched to using different shapes”:

redgreen

By using shape to reinforce (overload) the color difference, green and red can still be used to take advantage of those hue’s strong cultural significance (green = go, red = stop). The Economist, on the other hand, persists in NOT using shape to amplify the color differences in their charts and maps. Not only does this make it hard to read on my evening subway commute, they are completely illegible for color blind readers. The January 16th, 2010 edition has a particularly egregious example:

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How Different Groups Spend Their Day (NY Times)

Monday, December 28th, 2009

[Editor's note: I missed this interactive from The New York Times over the summer. "Sleeping, eating, working, and watching TV takes up about two-thirds of the average day." Delve into the chart by isolating either by activity or by groupings of survey participants. Roll over the chart with your mouse to discover the percentage numbers by time.]

Republished from the New York Times. July 31, 2009.

The American Time Use Survey asks thousands of American residents to recall every minute of a day. Here is how people over age 15 spent their time in 2008. Related article
Interact with the original at the New York Times . . .
(Screenshot below) By By SHAN CARTER, AMANDA COX, KEVIN QUEALY and AMY SCHOENFELD.
nyt_time_use_charting

Flash AS3 versus HTML 5+ (Mike @ Teczno)

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

canvasmappingtag[Editor's note: Even with Adobe's open sourcing the Flash ActionScript 3.0 compiler, the HTML community continues to push for abandoning the platform in favor newer markup languages that center around the canvas tags. Slowly this is becoming more of a reality as the markup becomes more powerful and the rendering engines faster. We're still not their yet, and I'll be programming in AS3 for a while more yet. But something to ponder.]

Republished from Teczno.

the future is staring us in the face

That’s the line we use around the office whenever the subject of HTML and canvas comes up – we use Adobe Flash for most everything now, but we don’t expect that situation to last forever. The work done by Mozilla on Gecko and Apple on WebKit is one possible future for online design and visualization, and it’s turning slowly to face us right about now.

A few developments during recent years have brought us here.

One of the first widespread demonstrations of canvas viability as an interactive medium came from legendary Javascript developer John Resig, who ported the popular educational / artistic Processing environment to Javascript and released Processing.js to the world in May 2008 or so, just about 1 1/2 years ago. At the time, the library was lauded as an “amazing hack” (Andy Baio). Christopher Blizzard said:

The web is going to win, filling the market niche where Flash and other similar technologies found their hold. And John’s little project can hopefully act as a great catalyst to take us there. Thanks, John!

Continue reading at Teczno and play with live mapping demo . . .

Introducing a new OSM editor… Potlatch 2 (Open Geo Data)

Monday, December 14th, 2009

[Editor’s note: This tool from the OpenStreetMaps.org cohort is open source and written in ActionScript 3.0. It displays OSM information in vector format for editing and tagging. Use it in concert with the MapZen iPhone app for capturing points of interest (POI) in the field.]

Republished from OpenGeoData. Nov. 30, 2009.

OpenStreetMap users will know all about Potlatch, the online editor that appears when you click the ‘Edit’ tab on the site. Well, there’s a whole new version coming soon!

Potlatch 2 is a complete rewrite still with the same principle in mind: an editor which hits the right balance between speed, ease-of-use, and flexibility. It’s under very active development at the moment and I’ll include a link at the end of this post where you can have a look.

But there are four big new features – and one behind-the-scenes change – to tell you about first.

New feature – friendly tagging system

Potlatch 2 has a friendly, intuitive tagging system. The mapper can use graphical menus, dedicated fields, and icons to get the tagging just right – without the need to remember tag names and values.

For example, you can choose highway types from a set of icons, then add a speed limit by selecting the appropriate restriction sign.

Potlatch 2 tag editor

All this is fully customisable using a straightforward presets file. Using this, you can create your own favourite tag combinations.

New feature – WYSIWYG rendering

Potlatch 2 has an all-new rendering engine far in advance of the current one.

With road names, patterned fills, rotated icons, and much more, the editing experience can be like working live on the familiar Mapnik rendering, the cyclemap, Osmarender, or anything you like -making it much more approachable for the beginner.

The Halcyon renderer used in Potlatch 2

Just like the tagging, the rendering is easy to customise. It uses a special form of CSS, called MapCSS, which lets you create wonderful-looking maps with just a few lines of text. The tagging and rendering together make Potlatch 2 ideal for ‘vertical’ mapping applications, such as a cycle-specific editor or a building/addressing editor. Stylesheets aren’t just about making the map look pretty: you can create stylesheets to help your mapping, such as one that highlights roads without names.

The rendering engine (Halcyon) is available as a compact (<100k) standalone component which you can embed in webpages, so your custom maps can be used outside Potlatch 2.

Continue reading at OpenGeoData . . .

What’s Cooking on Thanksgiving (NY Times)

Friday, December 11th, 2009

[Editor’s note: This series of small choropleth interactive maps from Matthew Ericson and Amanda Cox back on Thanksgiving day show regional patterns of what Americas are eating where. One holiday down, another to go. Thanks Kristin and Martin!]

Republished from the New York Times.

As cooks turn to the Web for Thanksgiving recipes, the terms they enter into search engines can provide clues to what dishes are being cooked around the nation. On Wednesday on Allrecipes.com, “sweet potato casserole” was by far the most common search term nationwide. It was tops in 36 of the 50 states and easily outpaced the No. 2 entry, “pumpkin pie.” |Related Article »


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Unemployment rate by county (Kelso via Wash Post)

Monday, December 7th, 2009

[Editor’s note: Kudos to Kat Downs for wiring up this interactive, zoomable map of the United States showing unemployment rate by county. There’s a slider to see data back in time. I did the base map using my map generalization skills honed on Natural Earth. Using data that is appropriately generalized for the display scale cuts down on file size and reduces lag before data display.]

Republished from The Washington Post. Dec. 3, 2009

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SOURCE: Bureau of Labor Statistics; GRAPHIC: Kat Downs, Mary Kate Cannistra and Nathaniel Vaughn Kelso – The Washington Post, December 3, 2009

Adobe posts Flash 10.1, AIR 2 betas with multi-touch (Electronista)

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

[Editor's note: Adobe begins to catch up to Apple's iPhone with multi-touch gestures, as the video below from BusinessWire demos.]

Republished from Electonista.

Adobe today fulfilled earlier promises and provided betas for both Flash Player 10.1and AIR 2. Both are the first from Adobe to have a Flash layer that supports multi-touch input, including gestures such as pinching to zoom the window. Flash Player specifically gets H.264 hardware decoding through newer video chipsets and, initially for Windows PCs, can significantly reduce the workload on the CPU or a notebook’s battery.

The gain is particularly helpful for netbooks using NVIDIA’s Ion chipset as it should enable HD video in Flash where it was previously only available for downloads.

Both add native support for microphones, but AIR 2 adds significantly more native communication with the system itself and can talk both to local apps as well as to mass storage devices like flash drives or memory cards. It works better for serving content and has a newer version of the WebKit rendering engine that supports HTML5 and faster JavaScript, much like Android 2.0 or Safari.

Either beta is available today for Linux, Mac OS X and Windows. Mobile betas, which should be the first to provide broadly available Flash on smartphones, aren’t due until early next year for Android and Symbian. The HTC Hero already offers an early version of in-browser flash.