Saturday, July 15, 2006

Let's Decide on Evaluation Criteria

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Designing a Slider

Designing slider is another important “trick” to know for effective creating of interactive visual representations in Flash. In the coming class we will explore this process. Below is Flash display showing how dragging a slider can change not just numerical values on the screen but also display changes as in graphical way (bars change size). So changes in visuals tell us about something, in this case, that if a variable represented by the slider increases, something else with also change and therefore some relationship exists.

Click HERE to download sourse code of this file

Slider can also be used for incremental changes and also control changes in non-liner information. Explore the design below. Once you change slider position, it will lock itself to one or preprogrammed stages and make change in the displayed image.

Click HERE to download sourse code of this file

I designed a step by step video showing how slider is crated and used to change some information on the screen. Click HERE to download it. In addition, some students were interested to know how to create drag and drop interaction. This is not very user friendly in Flash and I will not attempt to teach it in this class. However, some venturous students might study this Flash file as see if they can make sense of it.

Click HERE to download sourse code of this file

Have you discovered and new “trick?” Share with us your experience.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Interactive Map of Hong Kong

You can download a movie showing how to develop the interactive map of Hong Kong which we built in the class. I hope that this will help.

Click HERE to download movie step by step [zip file].

The same file can be created in a different way. HERE is one more movie showing how this can be done differently.

The purpose of the MITE6323 module is largely conceptual in the sense that my aim is to get the students to think about and explore possibilities for communication of information in visual and interactive format. I think that this is occurring very well as evidenced by the quality of stuff provided in the students’ blogs. However, I observed that some students are experiencing frustrations with Macromedia Flash. I would like to hear some idea from students as to how to deal with this problem.

In relation to your project, you should ask me to help you solve any technical problems. Some of you are already doing this. For example, two students asked me for help with the file shown bellow. Interact with the file by inputing values for times and observe how input is processed into some actions on the screen. If you want to access source code of this file to study how it is done click HERE.

Monday, July 03, 2006

What do you need to know about Flash?

After the last session I begun to think a bit more about what exactly my students need to know about Flash in order to make its effective use for design of visual and interactive representations. Flash is a very powerful development tool, many programming and multimedia design things can be created. However, to start using the tool to effectively design representations, one does not need to know all of these. To my opinion, my students need to understand:

-- Use basic drawing tools, import images, create and understand symbols (button, movie and graphics)
--Create buttons (visible, invisible, animated, with sound effects etc) that can be used to either move to a different location on a timeline or to control another move that is housed on the main stage.
--Design and utilize sliders
--Create simple manipulations of variables.

I noticed that some in the class still have small difficulty understanding “anatomy’ of a button. A button might have three states (up – as is seen on the screen by a user; over -- as displayed once the user position a mouse arrow over the button, and don – as displayed after the user click on the button and before lets off the mouse), and defined hot-spot area (hit area). Here are some examples of buttons:

Let’s hear form you what other things you like to know about Flash...