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Re: [Swftools-common] A few suggestions for swftools

From: Matthias Kramm
Subject: Re: [Swftools-common] A few suggestions for swftools
Date: Sun, 15 Jul 2007 22:54:33 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.13 (2006-08-11)

On Wed, Jul 11, 2007 at 04:02:01AM -0500, Kevin Veroneau wrote:
> One big thing I would love to see in SWFTools, is a libswfc.  A library 
> which essential follows how swfc works, but will allow the creation of 
> frontends through different languages.  For example, a PHP module for swfc, 
> or a python or ruby module for it.

I tried to create something similar to a swfc Python interface once,
but never got it finished. The current version is actually quite
powerful, but has the big problem of lacking documentation.
Concerning complexity/simplicity, it's somewhere between swfc and the
librfxswf library. Another problem it has, however, is that it's only
available for Python.
Maybe the Python interface can be wrapped "as such" into a PHP or Ruby
module- I haven't looked into that yet.

> If someone in this mailinglist has enough skill with SWFTools, and C++, 
> creating a 
> Linux/BSD/Solaris version of the Adobe Flash Authoring tool should be a great 
> task to undertake.  

Not sure whether this should be direction for swftools- none of the
programmers working on swftools (mostly me *cough*) has much experience 
with GUI design, and there are a number of other projects (forgot the name,
but there are quite a few) out there which are focused on a Flash GUI, and 
I think it would be pointless trying to compete with them on their own
Then again, having some GUI for at least allowing easy access to all the
swftools functionality might be something really worthwhile. This is
what Derek tried to do with "swifty".
I once started a pdf2swf GUI, but got stuck in some wxWindows problems,
so this is still unfinished. (help is welcome, btw.)

>   For example, take other GNU/GPL'd application source code and combine them 
> all with SWFTools to make a single flash composer.  I would see the KDE 
> application Inkscape as a good base for the code.  Just extend the abilities 
> of Inkscape to include animation and flash file export ability.

I think there's a plugin for Inkscape out there which adds SWF export
capability (It saves the files as PDF and automatically converts them
to SWF)- search the swftools list for "Inkscape".

> Which when I tell my friends, that yeah, I'm creating flash animations
> using a text editor, they get confused.

People get similarily confused when you tell them that, yes, you
have Flash skills, and then you tell them that you never even touched
Macromedia's Flash IDE. :)

> Anyways, my last suggestion is simple, and relates to Huub Schaeks' 
> suggestion.  I was using swfextract on a few swf files lying around the net.  
> Upon opening the font files in firefox to view the fontset, I noticed that it 
> only contains the letters which the flash animation uses.  

I'm eagerly avaiting Huub's patches. Reducing the number of glyphs in
a font to the ones which are actually used is something which pdf2swf
did for some time, but which was missing in swfc up to now.

> I am planning on bringing back the swftools web editor/testing site.
> [...]
> It will also have the ability which w3schools has for 
> HTML code, namely their TryIt editor.  All of those examples on the 
> swftools.org website could be built into this type of system.  Visitors could 
> easily modify the code and press 'Try It' to re-compile it in seconds to see 
> the results.

Sounds like a great application. Let me know once you have something to
link to.

Also thanks for your many thoughts concerning swftools!



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