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Blog Archive

Results for the blog tag features.

Photoshop CS4 and OpenGL

pixelgridThis is the new Photoshop CS4 sleeper feature. It doesn’t quite have the bling-bling of the 3D features added or the groundbreaking content aware scaling feature but it subtly affects the way you interact with the application. OpenGL runs off your video card (if your card has it) and allows for these new interface upgrades.

The pixel grid makes the division between pixels more obvious at higher magnifications. I think this could be very useful for creating pixel icons. I personally map out my pixel icons out in Illustrator. It is really tedious, using the move command to move and duplicate a 1 pixel square rectangle to make the shape. I like pain. I must. I guess I just like the idea of them being scalable vector icons. Even though they’ll never be larger than 100% size. This feature may make me rethink my pixel icon workflow. Read more …

Illustrator Spirograph

Remember when you were a kid? Doing kid stuff like eating paint chips and huffing glue. Do you remember when you got caught doing that stuff and Mom told you to play with something that didn’t make you see Jesus Christ in your Fruity Pebbles? Sometimes she would ask you to play with Spirograph instead.

It seems that the Illustrator team at Adobe got caught with a lot of paint in their mouths because they decided to add the game they grew up with as a little known feature in Illustrator. So now it’s really simple to make these kind of designs free-form and a lot faster than with some plastic gear template.

First, select pretty much any drawing tool: Line Segment, Rectangle, Ellipse, etc. I chose the Star tool. Now drag a star out and while doing that hold the tilde (~) key and the shift key. You will see the edge hinting stick as you drag. When you release, the edge hinting will remain as artwork. The shift modifier allows the shape to be constrained at center. Holding option with the Line Segment tool will allow free movement at center instead of at the end of the line. Holding shift with a circle can make a quick tunnel effect.

The modifiers is what makes this interesting. Try every combination you can think of. If you want to go for extra credit try this finger-cramping configuration. Try starting the shape then pressing the space bar. It will make a trail across the screen. If  you have a star going it becomes a shooting star. Go ahead, make a wish, you paint-licking dreamy-dreamers.

You'll Get No Help From Flash CS4

I got the new Creative Suite 4 at work the other day. My boss tells me I am one of four who got it this early. He was one that got it too. I asked him why they wasted a copy on him. From what I gathered, so he could open the program and then say he’s got mad skills.

Disc 1, Disc 2. Once it installed I was on my way to going through all the new features. Still had to setup. I can’t touch a new version of CS without setting up all my panels just like the previous one. Then I think about how the new feature panels fit into it. As I went to put the Help panel where it goes in my workspace I am redirected to Safari! I thought I was in Flash a second ago? I looked all over for a new place for the Help panel and came up with squat. Then (because Flash so generously opened my browser for me) I looked for others that were up-in-arms about this change as well. Google let me know I wasn’t alone.

I found this post where there is some kind of workaround for it. This doesn’t keep it in the IDE though. It just makes the help be local instead of on the internet. Which is faster, but doesn’t address the real problem. I like to look at the help and the code the same time, my Workspace is based on the premise that the Help panel is on my right side.

Apparently, Adobe has no intention of putting this back in the IDE. Looks like they are making the big push to get developers out of Flash and into Flex. Sure, it’s more money. Hey Adobe, I’ll use Flex because it is a better editor, not because you hack shit out of other programs to corral me into using it. All I can hope for now is that someone will develop an extension for Flash, basically an internal web browser like Flex, that can display help.