Archive for September, 2007
Tuesday, September 25th, 2007
Well, firstly this isn’t a great trick but something that many of you would have actually used in your project without knowing it. Infact, this isn’t completely my thought but that of a Toufee user named Michael Barry who emailed me a couple of days back asking as if he could convert an avi file to flash video file using Toufee. Thats the moment when this though struck…why not use Toufee to convert movie files to flash videos? The process doesn’t even take much time or effort. Toufee supports a plethora of video formats from the old MPEG to the new 3GP and AVI files. The complete list of video files supported by Toufee is as followsÂ - AVI, MOV, FLV, MP4, ASF, M4V, M4A, 3GP, 3G2, MPEG, NSV, RM, WMV. I know a lot of peopleÂ searching Google hours on end to find a good software that could convert their favourite videos to flash videos so that they can put it up on the internet and share with their friends. Most of those softwares would be a shareware that will allow converting your movie to a fixed time lenght of some x seconds.
So how does Toufee fill up here? Simply upload the video file to Toufee, create a blank movie project, add the video file to your project and viola you’ve just converted your favorite video file to a flash movie! Toufee allows you not only to convert the videos to flash movies but Toufee instantly generates the HTML code that you could use to put the flash movie in your website. Imagine if you were trying to put up a QuickTime movie in your website…not only does that require HTML skills butÂ you need QuickTime plugin installedÂ at each of the machinesÂ from whichÂ yourÂ users would be accessingÂ your site. Now, you cannot guarantee that all your users would haveÂ QuickTime installed.Â With Toufee, you don’t have that problem as all the browsers nowadays have the latest flash plugin installed by default.
With Toufee, the possibilies seems ever increasing and we’ve been discovering new ways to use the free flash movie maker tool to a more broader use. If you found that you have used Toufee in a different way and did something out-of-the-box and if you are willing to share with the users, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Till next time,
Friday, September 21st, 2007
ToufeeÂ flashÂ movieÂ maker is not only good for creating flash movies but can make a great tool for digital storytelling…just have a look at the flash movie created aboveÂ (youÂ needÂ toÂ waitÂ aÂ bitÂ forÂ theÂ movieÂ toÂ load).
The above flash movie is a great example of how one could use Toufee flash movie maker tool to create digital stories that otherwise would take pages to write about. A noteable feature of this flash movie is the use of split-screen effect. Without the split-screen effect, it would have been difficult to achieve a storybook effect and it would have ended up as just another flash movie. Since flash movies have the ability to have interactive content like images, animations, sounds and videos, it can greatly condense a story into a matter of few slides and that is exactly what the flash movie above has achieved.
This again proves how Toufee seamlessly fits as an educational tool. Authors and book publishers can also use Toufee to create flash movies like the one above to provide sneak preview about their upcoming titles. The possibilities of what one could do with Toufee seams endless. Do let us know if you have used Toufee to create digital stories or if you had used Toufee to create something completely out-of-the-box.
Till next post,
Monday, September 17th, 2007
Did you know you can customize your Toufee buttons to add special links? Let say you have a button called Email Me in your Toufee flash movie. Now, when users click the button, won’t it be great if by default it opens the email program with the your address in the To field? Marketers would find this handy as it would also mean that they get instant feedback on their product (assuming that they use Toufee flash movies to create flash promo).
So how do you actually do it? Very simple, indeed. Select the button for which you want to create the hyperlink, and open its Properties. In the Properties window, you’ll find Go To URL textbox under the Button Action option. In the textbox, enter mailto: followed by our email address…for example, mailto:email@example.com. Update the changes and close the window. Now when you play the movie, you’ll notice that on clicking the button, your default email client will open. This feature is really useful if you at the end of the flash movie you want users to post their feedback.
Customization feature is not limited to only adding your email address. You can also link your button to open up Skype or MSN applications. For example, at the end of your flash movie you could add a button “Skype Me” which on clicking will allow users to reach you through Skype. For this, you need to enter in the button URL as skype:phone followed by the Skype phone number. You can also use the same format to launch MSN messenger as well, just use msn:yourid (for example, msn:firstname.lastname@example.org)
Should you have any queries related to this article, please feel free to email at email@example.com
Till next time!
Thursday, September 13th, 2007
Toufee just managed to reach another milestone, this time with the Google search results though. Toufee crossed the 100,000 mark last week and its purely an organic growth that is constantly fueling our rise in the market for online flash movie maker.
While some of might be wondering what is this all about, one thing we can tell you that is an important step towards our goal to make people realize the full potential of rich internet applications. As we keep telling, Toufee v2.0 will be a great example of what we mean by rich internet application. Still yet, people do keep emailing us asking for a standalone version of Toufee (so that they could work on their favourite flash movie maker offline!).
Monday, September 10th, 2007
So what exactly is happening with Toufee 2.0 and when can you expect to see it in action? Why the hell this delay? Well people, this is what happened. Toufee 2.0 was complete long before – a couple of months back actually. As you know Toufee itself is done using Adobe Flash platform (i.e. Toufee which allows you to create flash movies, is also made using the very same Flash technology). Flash technology allows creating easy animation effects or actions for websites. While this might be fine for simple animation, more demanding and complex effects requires some programming assistance (a single line of programming code is all it takes to move an object from x to y!) so Macromedia introduced something called ActionScript along with Flash. All those cool animations that you see nowadays on websites are the work of ActionScript + Flash effects – that is the reason you get to see really great animations that result in suprisingly small file sizes as half the effects are programmed using ActionScript (thanks to ActionScript, difficult effects could still be achieved with small lines of code)
Toufee, as you know, is a complex tool developed using ActionScript and Flash. Toufee 2.0, which we keep talking about as the next big thing, was completed long back using ActionScript 2.0. Thatâ€™s when Adobe (the owner of the Flash technology) came with big announcementsâ€¦Adobe introduced the new Flex technology that the company promises would make is easier to create rich internet applications. The Toufee team was quick to realize what it meant â€“ It meant that Adobe is planning to scrap ActionScript 2.0. We immediately decided that we rewrite (yes, recode the entire Toufee 2.0 application from scratch) Toufee 2.0 using the new Flex technology. Itâ€™s a big gamble that we took since we were just days away from the release of Toufee 2.0 back then. Eventually, this lead to the release of Toufee 2.0 extended by a couple of months and as you have been hearing from me (if you had emailed Support you would know what I mean ) the entire Toufee team have been working day in and day out rebuilding the entire Toufee 2.0 using Flex. Mind you, Flex is a relatively new technology and creating an already popular product like Toufee using bleeding edge technology not only requires great skill but ample time. Nevertheless, Toufeeâ€™s development team was equal to the task and in only a few months they have managed to rebuild the entire Toufee 2.0 application using the new state-of-the-art Flex technology.
Alright, you might wonder why you need to know all this? Why canâ€™t we have simply sticked with ActionScript and had got the godammn v2.0 released as it was planned a few months back? The reasons are many-fold â€“ firstly, many of the new features in Toufee 2.0 wouldnâ€™t have been better if not for Flex. Secondly, as we continue to better Toufee, adding new features becomes relatively easier and faster with Flex. Had we stuck with the old Toufee 2.0 (based on ActionScript 2.0) it would mean that in the future, adding new features would have been extremely difficult and that could look really awful
Thatâ€™s itâ€¦technology evolves so fast that products like Toufee need to keep pace and we are doing just exactly that. Though it did put off the release by a few months, but soon as Toufee 2.0 is out, you can be rest assured that you will working with an online flash movie maker tool that is more than cutting-edge and way ahead of features and competition.
Wednesday, September 5th, 2007
Flash banners are soon replacing traditional image-based advertising to become the defacto standard in online advertising. Flash banners are flexible, offer greater effect, supports interactive content, etc.Â GivenÂ so many advantages one might still wonder why you still find image-based ads? The reason is that creating flash banners requires a decent knowledge of working with flash.Â With Toufee, you can create flash banners just as easily as you would do normal flash movies. Follow these simple steps to create your flash banner.
For creating your flash banner you need to resize your flash movie to match one of the standard banner sizes (i.e. 468 x 60, 768 x 90Â are some of the standard sizes used now). For resizing your flash movie, open the Optimize Movie window. This optionÂ is found on the top right corner of your Toufee flash movie editor. This opens the Optimize Your Movie window. Select Advanced tab. Here you will find the option to change the Height and the Width of your Toufee flash movie.
Please note that doing flash banners with Toufee require you to resize your images, videos so that it fits within the flashÂ banner. So plan your images and chose the dimensions accordingly so that it fits within your flash movie. You can easily resize your images with Toufee flash movie editor.Â Once you select an image you will findÂ ”drag-points”Â around the image. SelectÂ aÂ point and resize your image accordingly.Â Once you have changed the size of your flash movie, you can start working on the flash banner as you would normally do with any other Toufee flash movie.