Archive for March, 2006

Superb collection of tips & tricks

For those that use Director you have probably run across the name James Newton. He recently updated his Nonlinear Notes for Developers site.

This site brings together in one place all the material that I have developed to help other Director users create great things. The Tutorials section includes articles that I have published but which are no longer in print. The Tips section contains a number of simple movies written in answer to questions on Director-oriented mailing lists or fora. No explicit explanations are given, but the code used is simple and well-enough commented for you to work out how it functions. The Articles section contains links to material published elsewhere on the Internet. The Resources section contains links to other sites that I personally find useful.

Exceedingly useful goodies! Thanks a million James.

Add comment March 24th, 2006

Director/Shockwave update, Flash 8 Xtra

Feel like using Flash 8 content for projectors and shockwave content? Updates have been released for these. Get far more info on the Director downloads page.

4 comments March 22nd, 2006

Director and SCORM

In the most recent Adobe (formerly Macromedia) Developer Center Newsletter there is a great article about the development of a SCORM based Presentation Engine. One of the best things about the article is how it tries to clarify exactly what all this SCORM mumbo-jumbo really is, since the term flies around a lot, but people often say ‘huh’?

Add comment March 10th, 2006

First impression: running Director on Intel iMac

A few weeks back I got to play with Shockwave on one of the new Intel iMacs running under Rosetta. It had a rather snappy feel, and for the content I typically create it was more than adequate.

The downside was that the screen had a rather large defect near the bottom, so it immediately got sent back to Apple for a new one. Eventually it made it back. Today I confirmed that once again the Shockwave is snappy. Then I decided to take a shot at seeing how Director felt.

One word: SLOW. I didn’t get to play with it for very long. Basic tasks such as dragging sprite around, editing scripts, naming members, etc. seemed to run at a decent pace, but hitting the play button to test the movie was really painful. It would typically sit there for about 3 seconds before doing much in a movie that had nothing in it other than a text member and a go to the frame statement in it.

In defense of Director I will point out that the iMac I was using only had the base 512 meg of RAM. Director has always been a bit RAM hungry (as are most all multimedia tools), and combine that with OSX 10.4 itself and Rosetta and it makes sense that the poor iMac would feel pain. I think I also had Safari (in Rosetta) running in the background.

If I get a chance I’ll try to watch RAM usage next time I boot up Director on it. Right now it is primarily a testing machine for the content I work on. It would also be nice to see how it would do if the RAM was maxed out.

I’ll probably be buying a new iMac for home in the near future, but will get the full RAM. I’ll let you know how that goes when I finally get my taxes done to see if I get the new computer this year. No matter what, I’ll then be living with Director in Rosetta at home.

For additional info, here is another story from Developer Dispatch on the new Intel Macs that got posted earlier today.

4 comments March 8th, 2006

Shockwave speed tests?

With the recent introduction of new Intel-based Macs, the upcoming Flash Xtra, the permanently under development Windows Vista (and its six versions), the multiple versions of the Shockwave plug-in, and the myriad of browsers out there, I was thinking it would really be nice to have a Shockwave benchmark test out there somewhere.

Does anyone already have one or know of one?

Finding/creating one that tests a wealth of the features in Director would be very useful. Much of the work I do is not a real stress on most computers, and the things I most worry about are vectorShapes and the speed of lingo when dealing with lists and various math functions. Others have to deal with the much more demanding 3D stuff and imaging lingo. But testing on new systems is always needed.

It would also be great if the test could send the results back to a database with some basic system info just so you get an idea if your computer is out of the ordinary.

I dug around and found a few tests out there:

I’ll put a simple one together for my own testing in the next few days (and put that up here), since I recently got a new Intel-based iMac at work for compatibility checks and such. It will be interesting to see how it does when running under Rosetta in Safari.

If anyone knows of any other tests out there, drop me a line at multimediaguy at gmail.

Add comment March 5th, 2006

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