Posted Tuesday, May 23, 2006 8:11:31 AM by Stephanie
For those of you that have been following the development of, or even using sIFR, this post is for you. Mark Wubben has announced the release of the alpha of the next version of sIFR. I just got back from TODCon, so I haven't had time to play with it yet, but the feature list makes it look very promising. Especially the part about the increased simplicity of tuning your fonts. For me that was the only difficult part.
Other interesting bits -- Mark is taking advantage of the new Flash 8 filter features, like drop shadows. You'll also get the added benefit of Flash's new anti-aliasing and leading. There's also a fix included for the AdBlock issue. All in all, very promising.
If you've got time to test/play/help make this version the best it can be, head over to the sIFR 3 Alpha page and download it now.
Posted Monday, May 22, 2006 11:03:36 AM by Chris Flick
You would have thought no one ever saw someone eat 3 lbs. of crabs before...
Hey folks... I've been back from TODCON almost a full day now (got back into Washington DC at 7:00pm last night). So I thought I'd give you a brief synopsis of my trip and what I did, what I thought and what I experienced the last couple of days at TODCON.
Thursday (leaving for Orlando):
My one big purchase for this trip was a Washington Nationals baseball jersey. I promised myself I wouldn't purchase any Nationals merchandise until Major League Baseball got their proverbial act together and named an owner and, since they did that two days before I had to leave, I was good to go with my capitalistic morals still intact.
Got to the hotel a few hours earlier then everyone else, so I got my room and walked around the lobby where I ran into Ray and Danielle Mickey. So, we helped Ray set up the registration table with all the books, t-shirts and name tags for all the TODCON attendees. For the t-shirts, I PROMISE I'll put the t-shirt design up on my web site today or tomorrow (I swear!). While Danielle and I were organizing the name tags, I grabbed Tom Green's name tag and re-inserted the generic name tag sample that comes with all the plastic holders. You've seen them before... they generally have a picture of man or woman with the office supply logo on them. So, in essence, Tom's tag has his name on the front and a picture of some generic secretary-looking lady on the back. I made a bet with Danielle to see how long it would take Tom to discover this. I won the bet with "half a day".
Later that night, many of us went to Roy's - a Hawaiian restaurant where Vicki Berry blinded us with her digital camera. The women is dangerous with a camera, folks! She's posted some of her TODCON pics here.
After the sessions for the day, a group of us went out searching for a good ribs place. Unfortunately, after walking endlessly around the strip mall, we found out the place went out of business so we opted for a steakhouse instead. By that time though, I was too hungry to notice what the name of the place was but they had some gooooooood steak.
One of the TODCON attendees that came with our group was Hassan Ellis. Eating and talking with Hassan is an example of one of the nicest and coolest things about TODCON - it's a chance to meet your peers and "talk shop" in an intimate and pressure-free way that no other conference can. As Paul Davis is fond of saying: You sometimes learn MORE from the "after sessions" then you do DURING the actual sessions. TODCON gives you a chance to discuss and compare each other's working habits, techniques and general advice to one another.
By the end of the evening, we came to the conclusion that Hassan was "separated at birth" from the actor, Richard T. Jones ("Judging Amy) and we all had a good laugh about that as others at the conference told him the same thing (even though Hassan didn't know who Richard T. Jones was).
The morning session, we all got to talk with Scott Fegette and Paul Gubbay (formerly of Macromedia and now Adobe) about all of our "wishes" for all the tweaks, changes, improvements and other things related to the Adobe line of products. My "big wish" was that if we were all going to play "Taps" for Freehand, at least make Illustrator a lot more "Freehand-ish" so it's much more intuitive and easier to use. That and I wanted them to add "bendable triangles" in Fireworks so triangles can be manipulated the same way they currently are in Freehand.
That night, it was decided that seafood would be the place of eats that night. At first, I was reluctant to go since Ray said the place didn't have crabs - imagine that... a seafood restaurant that didn't serve crabs!!! Talk about the horror! But I decided to go any way.
Thankfully, the restaurant did, indeed, serve crabs. In fact, they had three main choices of snow crab legs to choose from: 1.5 pounds, 3 pounds or all-you-can-eat. To everyone's utter horror and shock, I chose the 3 pound selection and casually explained to all the dropped jaws at the table that I come from a long line of crab eaters and in the Flick family, we take our crab eating VERY seriously. Three pounds of crabs is nothing but I chose that instead of the all-you-can-eat selection because I would still be eating there if I did.
I'm telling you... it's like people never saw someone eat crabs before! Amateurs.
Later on, many of us decided to take the Trolley back to the hotel since it was about 5 miles away. Me? I decided to get off 4 miles away from the hotel. Mainly because I had to do some "tourist shopping" to bring back something for my wife and kids.
And... walking four miles wasn't a bad way to burn off three pounds of crab.
Later on that night, I went swimming at the hotel with the Interakt gang where two ducks decided a hotel pool was a nice place as any for a 1:00am dip as any!
Sunday was the debut of the Orlando Jumpstart. I designed the layout while Zoe, Sheri and Jim helped organize and put together. As in Las Vegas last year, we wanted to show a preview of the Orlando Jumpstart and give everyone there a taste of how it was put together and what some of the things you can do with it.
All in all, it was a great session and my first since speaking at MX North a few years ago. Quite a few people came up to me and told me how much they enjoyed my particular part in explaining the design process and commented that they would certainly be interested if I decided to ever do a full session on something at future TODCON. So if you were at this year's TODCON and attended our Orlando Session, what are some things you might like to see from a guy who mainly uses Photoshop, Fireworks, Freehand and Dreamweaver? TODCON 9 is, sadly, a full year away but like I always say, you can never start preparing too soon!
Anyway, that was some of my memorable moments at this year's TODCON. What were yours?
Posted Tuesday, May 16, 2006 4:59:02 PM by Chris Flick
My sudden obsession with Callie (Sara Ramirez)
First off, let me explain that one of the things my wife and I enjoy doing is talking about our "secret" celebrity crushes. She's never made it a secret how much she has the hubba-hubbas for a certain bald Starship Enterprise Captain (Patrick Stewart). And likewise, she's always known about my own hubba-hubbas for Stevie Nicks. But lately, a new celebrity crush has slowed entered my realm. A celebrity crush that appears (mostly) in the background of a certain Seattle Hospital ever Sunday night.
I am, of course, talking about Sara Ramirez' character, Callie, from Gray's Anatomy. I have to admit though that I'm not a long time fan of the show. I only recently started watching it right after the Superbowl (The Bomb episode) but even then, I almost took an immediate fascination with the Callie character - the dark haired, big bodied beauty played by Sara Ramirez (Spamalot). And my fascination has only increased since then.
I'm not sure exactly why I'm suddenly fascinated with Callie though. Maybe it's because I see so much of me and my wife in the George and Callie thing. My wife was Callie when I first met her in art school. She was, on the outside, the one I thought was the most confident, most responsible, most self-assured person there was despite the fact that she wore wild and crazy clothes and obviously - and maybe purposely - didn't "fit in". But instead of turning me off, it was those very same things that attracted me to her. In simple terms, even though she also seemed to try and hide in the background as Callie seems to do, it was her crazy clothes and bold spirit that did the opposite to me.
For me, Callie represents the loner high school rebel chic... the one that secretly probably wants to be cool but knows she can never fit in with the "cool kids" so she puts up that fierce, fake wall of toughness, of general disdain for everything - and everyone - she thinks represents "cool". She's the rebel who desperatley wants to fit in but still fights fiercely for her individuality. Looking back after all these years, that's probably how I first viewed my wife. In my eyes, here was a woman who was working her own way through art school (an expensive art school at that), living by herself and, if push came to shove, definitely not afraid to voice her opinion. While I was a guy who was more worried about fitting in, pleasing all the right people and, generally, doing all the things that were asked of me - especially by any authority figures I thought could influence my future.
Sound like George and Callie to any one?
In the end though, it's only a TV show. I do hope though, that the writers and creators of the show decide to keep her around for a long, long time. My hope is that she becomes the Jimmy Smit of GA. I remember when Jimmy started his stinct on LA Law, he was rumored to only be a minor character and was supposed to be gone after a season or two yet he was so strong and so popular, he became a mainstay of that show. I hope the same bodes well for Sara/Callie too because, for my money, her and George are THE most facinating couple in that show that's all about people sleeping with - and cheating on - each other. Those two seem to have the most genuine things to give to each other - a sense of fitting in and a huge shot of self-confidence.
I hope those two characters are given the chance to expand and grow together even though I know, in TV land - and especially a drama like GA - that rarely, rarley, RARELY ever happens.
But as long as it is, I'm still going along for the ride!
Posted Tuesday, May 09, 2006 8:57:40 PM by Zoe Gillenwater
Posted Tuesday, May 09, 2006 3:06:04 PM by Danilo Celic
Adobe released an updater for Dreamweaver 8 to push the version up to 8.0.2. Included in the 8.0.2 release are updates to server behaviors that prevent SQL injection. The updater can be found in the Dreamweaver support center. For those that interested check out the release notes to see what has been changed.
Posted Thursday, May 04, 2006 2:31:10 AM by jojo
A short while back I had an email from a guy in Australia, his name is Bill Gillespie.
Bill is a teacher, and a pretty good one by the looks of things. The children at Kanwal Public school have entered a website design competition, the theme for the competition is water, and the children have specifically chosen water safety as the theme to work with.
The children are aged 10 and 11 years old and have been learning how to handcode html and CSS within Dreamweaver with Bill's guidance and they have done extremely well, lots of talent there for sure.
The image to the left shows the final website. I think you'll agree that they have done a fantastic job and deserve congratulating on both the presentation of the website and the graphics they have made to get the importance of the theme across, great job guys!
Not only have they completed the design but they have also been out and about interviewing the relevant authorities on water safety; so the website will not only look good but carry important information on water safety in general.
Something tells me that Bill might be able to sit back and put his feet up in the not to distant future while the kids just get on with it, excellent work.
Category tags: Designing for the Web
Posted Wednesday, May 03, 2006 7:50:25 PM by Jim Babbage
In just a few short weeks, I'll be in sunny Orlando, speaking at TODCon and hanging with some good friends. I hope to meet and make new ones, and have a blast as well.
If you've never been to TODCon, let me tell you it's a great experience. Great networking opportunity, a one of a kind chance to speak with some of your favorite authors (books and CMX) and learn a ton from them and the other attendees.
I have been to each TODCon since the first one and I've never regretted it. I hope to see you there as well. If you can't make it though, make sure to check out CMXtraneous as I am sure some of us will be posting the going's on, whetting your appetite for next year.