Posted Tuesday, November 30, 2004 1:02:38 AM by Stephanie
OK, so it took me a bit longer than Sheri German to get everything set up right, but I finally have JRun and ColdFusion running on my OS X Panther install! I have been wanting to do this for about a year. But all the stories I read online seemed to make it sound like either rocket science or torture -- and there is currently room for neither in my schedule. My schedule stays very full.
Many thanks to Tom Pletcher for writing an awesome article, ColdFusion on OSX, that took me through every step of the process. Very clearly. I had one little problem at the end and that was in getting the shell script to run on start up. I kept getting a terminal error on login. I could, however, use the same command in the terminal and start the server right up. It was very puzzling. Many, many thanks to Paul Newman, who receive's Stephanie's "Today's Most Awesome Human" award! Paul hung with me (LATE) till he figured the problem out.
It seems that sometimes, when you use BBEdit to create the script (and yes, I'm still using version 6.5), it uses Macintosh line breaks instead of the Unix variety. So the fix was -- Open the file > Edit > Save As > click Options > choose Unix line breaks. It works!
I can't WAIT till tomorrow (when my eyes can open again) when I can try hooking DW up to my CF server... Maybe my CF class at MAX, and the myriad of CF tutorials here at CMX, will actually get put to use -- on my little old Mac. I never thought I'd see the day. Thanks Tom, for making me brave enough to try this! And Paul, I'm sending your gotoand play shirt out tomorrow... I swear! ;)
Posted Saturday, November 27, 2004 2:13:38 PM by Newman
It was with great trepidation that I finally installed Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) on Friday. I know the darn thing's been available since August, but I didn't have time for it until now.
Fortunately, I Googled SP2 for issues before installing it from the CD-ROM I ordered. According to some newsgroup posts, only Norton AntiVirus 2004 and 2005 are compatible with SP2. However, after following the instructions on Neville Hobson's blog, SP2 recognized my copy of NAV 2002. I should add that installing the WMI component via Live Update required two reboots of Windows XP. I updated NAV before installing SP2, but the blog implies NAV can also be updated after SP2 is installed.
I wish I could say the same about Flash MX Professional 2004. The first time I launched it after installing SP2, my CPU spiked to 100% and I had to end the flash.exe process. The second time I launched Flash 2004, I got as far as the Start Page, and then Flash locked up again. Not even the Flash MX 2004 Hotfix made a difference. I was prepared to uninstall/reinstall Flash 2004, or worse, use System Restore to return XP Pro to its pre-SP2 state. In the end, the solution was double-clicking an FLA file in Windows Explorer. Once it opened, I disabled the Start Page in Flash's Preferences. After launching and quitting Flash 2004 a couple times, I was able to enable the Start Page again. I still have no idea what caused this issue, and why this workaround was necessary.
I'm happy to report that Dreamweaver MX 2004 and ColdFusion MX 6.1 appear to be functioning normally. So far, I haven't experienced the overall system slowdown that some SP2 users are reporting, although deleting files in Windows Explorer seems to take forever now.
Macromedia has created an XP Service Pack 2 Support Center to explain issues that arise with Flash Player, Dreamweaver, ColdFusion, and other MM applications. You can also find out more about SP2 on Microsoft's web site.
Posted Thursday, November 18, 2004 10:39:28 AM by Newman
OK, I'm convinced. After spending the last month on a Flash video project, I'm never using QuickTime, Windows Media Player, or RealPlayer on a web site again. I created a single FLV file using Sorenson Squeeze 4.0, built a custom Flash video player, and the darn thing works on every browser and platform I can get my hands on. So far, I've tested it on IE6, Firefox, Mozilla, Netscape, and Opera. On OS X, it works on Firefox, IE, Netscape, and Safari.
Prior to this, I was using a ColdFusion page that sniffs the user's browser and platform and generates the appropriate code to embed QuickTime, Windows Media, or RealPlayer (assuming the user already has one of the plug-ins installed). That's so 20th century!
To spur the revolution, I've begun a three-part series called "Creating a Custom Flash Video (FLV) Player" for Community MX. Part 1, which was released today, is about building a custom Flash video player using the MediaDisplay component. You'll see how easy it is to create a full-featured Flash video player that you can use on your web sites, complete with play/pause, FLV download progress bar, volume slider, and real-time scrubbing. There's even an external XML configuration file.
Part 2, due in a week or so, shows how to create the same player using Flash's built-in NetConnection and NetStream classes. This results in a much smaller SWF file (2K versus 58K).
Part 3 rounds out the series by explaining how to convert the custom Flash video player into a resuable Flash component.
If you've been curious about how to get started with Flash video, this is the series for you. I hope you enjoy it.
Category tags: Flash
Posted Wednesday, November 17, 2004 6:50:06 AM by Stephanie
Macromedia has posted video of the keynote sessions from MAX. The sessions were interesting and if you have some time, this is well worth seeing. On Day One, Kevin Lynch talked about the Evolution of Flash. There was info on Blackstone and the new Maelstrom player which rocks! Check it out at Macromedia MAX.
Posted Tuesday, November 02, 2004 4:30:59 AM by Kim
Today is election day here in the U.S., in case you might have missed it. All the indicators are that this will be the largest turnout in our history, with huge numbers of people turning out to vote for their favorites.
Political junkie that I am, I've been following the races pretty closely, and even doing my own door-to-door campaigning. Since I don't really care for TV as a way to get my news--with it's sound bite format and inherent inability to cover issues in depth--I instead turn to my local newspapers and to all of the national newspapers that are easily accessed on-line.
I came across two excellent examples of how Flash is being used this year in ways that weren't possible in the 2000 election. These two simulations show the power of Flash technology in creating an interactive experience for voters.
While I might argue that people who are reading about the election on-line probably don't need help in figuring out how to use voting machines, this simulation on how to vote in Palm Beach County caught my attention. I really like the smooth operation of the movie, the useful way that the cursor has been modified to show someone voting by touching the screen, and the live feedback that is provided to the viewer. Kudos to the designers and developers at the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel for this one. (I know, I know, some of you are saying that there's much more to voting in Palm Beach County than simply turning out to vote, but we'll leave that discussion for another day and my other blog.)
Also from the Sun-Sentinel, the Election Tracker allows you to keep your own running tally of the presidential race, spin your own scenarios, and see the results in real-time in the Flash movie that's been developed. Again, from a purely geeky perspective, this is a terrific use of Flash, and shows how user input can almost instantly be reflected in the movie itself. Not to mention that it's kind of fun to create your own scenario on what you think will happen and hear "Hail to the Chief" played when one candidate gets to the magical 270 electoral votes.
Two great uses of Flash technology in those two examples, and I'm certain that there are many more.
Category tags: Flash