November 30, 2010By jaytechnology

I have long wanted to print from my phone. I had hopes when AirPrint was unveiled. Then my hopes were dashed when iOS 4.2.1 was released and users were only allowed to print to a few HP printers. Then my hopes were reignited when I came across a few blogs writing about a hack that would re-enable AirPrint. Then along comes AirPrintHacktivator. It works fantastic. Now, I can print to my older multi-function Brother laser printer—from my iPhone.

Nanowriless > Nanowrimo

November 27, 2010By jayWriting

I had hoped to write, this year, in nanowrimo but, there was no way.

Life is so busy and 50k words is a major time allotment. I had set a personal goal of 20k, but even that is too much right now. In the last month I chronicled 8+k words. That is great compared to the amount the month before 1k or less. I am happy to say that this month I have written more, bettered two stories, and began a new short story.

I might have written less than 50k, but I have written a nano bit mo than I had befo.

Ai to HTML5

November 25, 2010By jayapplications, technology

I have written about Adobe Flash and HTML5 here, here, here and here.

Well, I have finally had a chance to play with the AI2HTML5 plugin for Adobe Illustrator that Microsoft produced.
It is the simple logo animation that I have running in the header of my blog.

The process was extremely simple,
Just change the layer names to target the HTML5 function: circleR(alpha-direction:fade-in);

This works well in the newer browsers (though, ironically, not IE8). All Safari browsers 3 and up rendered it in my tests. Chrome and Firefox rendered it as well. I will leave it for a while and then will replace it with static graphic (once I figure out how to put it in a post).

Flash Breaks OS Rules

November 23, 2010By jayapplications, technology

Adobe has taken their cross-platform application design toward disability.

As a Mac user, there was a time in Flash (CS3, or 4—I used CS4 very little so it is hard to remember—was the last time this worked) that I could control-click or right-click on the file titlebar of the window I was working in, see the directory path, and navigate to the file (or its containing folder) in the Finder. This was handy. I used the feature frequently.

For years, I used it daily.

Now, I find myself habitually clicking and to no avail. It is disabling to me as a user. Adobe, rather than being concerned with me as a user, is more interested in pushing their cross-platform UI. I don’t like it at all. My experience within the CS5 suite is not enjoyable. The window management is hideous. The red button in all Flash apps (Flash, Catalyst, Builder) quits the app rather than closing the window.

So, now instead of Adobe working toward helping me as a designer-developer and enabling my workflow, I now have to change the way I have worked for years because they want cross-platformabilty. I am simply not amused. If I had other options that worked as well as Adobe I would switch. However, there isn’t the type of power that you get out of Adobe anywhere out there. I do realize that for integration something had to be sacrificed, but it shouldn’t have been platform-specific usability.

Google Voice

November 16, 2010By jaytechnology

Google Voice was just released in the iPhone app store. After a small amount of use, I will be sticking with GV Mobile+. I would have thought that Google could made the settings menu a bit beefier.

The fact that I can’t manage my settings from my mobile is a glaring weakness in Google Voice. I can’t manage most of the settings even from the web app. I should have been able to from their native iPhone app.

Overall? I think this is a weak entrance for their dedicated app.

Two stars.

Adobe Illustrator HTML5, by Microsoft?

November 13, 2010By jaytechnology

Microsoft develops an HTML5 plug-in for Adobe Illustrator: (This is several weeks old)

It is an important time for web/mobile technology. It reminds me of the time when Flash was just emerging. At the time, there were big browser wars and Netscape and IE were vying for their technology to become the web standard as well as for market share.

Sounds familiar doesn’t it.

Well, in ’96 FutureSplash Animator web-plug-in was developed which allowed for animations on the web. They sold to Macromedia and in ’96 the first Flash with plug-in was released. Since that time Flash and Flash development has been the primary way to ensure for cross-platform development. Companies could rely on developing once and reaching all browsers consistently. But, then the smartphone happened and while Macromedia and Adobe tried to develop a lightweight mobile plug-in, it never fully caught on and wasn’t very robust. In reality it was a small market, the screens were mostly tiny, and…

Then, the iPhone happened…

Since then, cross-platformability has been a bit tricky. Apple doesn’t allow Flash and is backing HTML5. What this means for the Flash plug-in’s future is still being determined. Currently, we have several tools being developed by Adobe, as I have linked to before, and now this from MS. We are at a very cool time. The players are all posturing the so-called wars are continuing. We will see where this heads. But for now, if you are wanting to build RICH for mobile—the tools are being propagated.

**According to one commentor this plug-in might not work on Macs. I haven’t yet tested it.

UPDATE: I have downloaded and tested this and it works as advertised. I am looking forward to see how this plays out in the big scheme of things.

Erasable Sharpie

November 3, 2010By jaytechnology, Writing

The erasable Sharpie Liquid Pencil has been out for a little while. In my area they have been sold out and I, finally, have laid my hands on one (well, technically two since there were two in the pack).

What do I think? After reading all of the mixed reviews and now playing with one: I like it.

It isn’t as smooth as I would hope, but it has a nice mechanical pencil drag to it. I am sketching and that has gotten comfortable. It took me a bit though. I was hoping it was going to be more ball point pen-ish in the feel. However, I can get some nice lights and darks.

One thing to note is that the ink will erase with your hand. So, in many ways it is very pencil-like.

I will let you know how my sketch stands up over the next few days.

Adobe Puts Flash to Sleep

November 3, 2010By jaytechnology

In a couple of posts: Creating HTML5

Creating HTML5 again

I made comments about Adobe killing off Flash. In reality Adobe will not kill off Flash. They will morph it. What will be killed off (or put to sleep) is the plugin. It is the plugin that most people are referring to when they discuss the destruction of Flash. The plugin and the IDE are often used, inaccurately, interchangeably. When I spoke of Adobe killing off Flash I was speaking tongue-in-cheek in the first post and slightly more clarified in the second.

To keep things distinct: the player is an .SWF format. Flash exports out to .SWF (as well as other formats), but Flash saves to an .FLA format. Adobe will more-than-likely morph the export of Flash to some non-plugin format (HTML5 or some other SVG type experience).

When will it happen? I don’t know. The HTML 5 export is one step toward the death of the plugin and by its looks it will be an excellent feature. In the current form of this HTML5 export, however, I would expect that you will see large png files and a large download.

Though, I don’t much like the directions that Adobe has taken with their IDEs, lately, I am looking forward to seeing Flash become independent of the plugin.