Shirazi Ribbon

This was a quick piece I banged out last night. It started out a bit different than what you see here, but I’m fairly satisfied with the result.

I also ported over a DrawingManager class from AS2 to get the arc drawing done. It neatly packages up a bunch of drawing utilities and can be used in place of making calls on the graphic object of a sprite directly. Once I’ve had a chance to test it more thoroughly, I’ll release it here.

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SeededRandomizer. A Seed Based Pseudorandom Number Generator in Actionscript

The standard way to generate a random number in Adobe Flash is to use the Math.random method. I’ve found Flash’s random number generator to be perfectly sufficient for all applications I’ve used it in up to this point. Unfortunately, the Math.random method does not allow you to “seed” the random numbers it generates; this is problematic if you want to generate the same random numbers repeatedly.

Dice Photo by Sarah Spaulding

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The Nintendo Wii and the Flash Player

Since the announcement that the Opera web browser on the Nintendo Wii would support Adobe Flash, I have been curious as to which version of Flash it would support. I haven’t been able to dig up any official announcement, if anyone out there on the infomesh has seen something which I missed, please let me know. You can see the Opera browser in action on the Wii website as well as in a preview presentation on the Nintendo Japan website. It seems to work well enough, and you can catch it playing a flash animation on the Japanese Super Mario Brothers DS website as well as playing flash video on what appears to be a website for a Nintendo DS based cooking guide.

Wii and Controller

I tried a little bit of amateur sleuthing to try and uncover the version of the Wii’s mysterious Flash Player.

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NikeStore.com A Flash Based E-Commerce Site

Nike has relaunched it’s online store as a completely Flash based RIA. Besides a slick visual refresh of the old HTML store, there are some significant architectural achievements as well. Highlights include fully functional deep linking and bookmarking support as well as a robust back button implementation on all of the major browsers. The site is also fully search engine accessible.

Check it out at: http://www.nikestore.com

NikeStore.com

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On-Screen Keyboard

I’ve previously posted a piece demonstrating handwriting recognition in flash. While I think gesture recognition is a great way to engage people with a unique interface, it’s probably not the quickest and most accurate way of getting user input. Keyboards are still the preferred method of user input. Unfortunately there are many situations in which a user does not have access to a physical keyboard.

The game Animal Crossing provides users with an on-screen keyboard

Console video games are constantly requiring users to enter text but require users to do so using a controller rather than a keyboard. There are also many touch screen and motion tracking kiosks which do not provide users with a standard keyboard. In most of these cases, an on-screen keyboard (a.k.a. a virtual keyboard) of some sort is presented to the user. The on-screen keyboard can either mimic the standard keyboard layout, or it can be customized to match the type of input which is required. For example, if a user is asked to enter their email address, it is probably better to place the “@” symbol on a prominent button rather than make a user select Shift-2.

I’ve created an on-screen keyboard in flash to use in some of the kiosk demos I’ve been working on. It was built in such a way to allow you to redesign the keyboard by simply positioning and resizing movieclips on the stage. The source code is provided below under a creative commons license.

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Gesture Recognition in Flash

I was recently presented with an opportunity to experiment with a motion sensitive kiosk. It immediately got me thinking about how I could implement gesture recognition in Flash. While gestures might not be the most accurate or quickest way to input into a device, they can certainly be a lot of fun.

Gestures

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