Open dialect – IDE for building flash 9 movies, AIR apps in Linux!

June 16, 2009 at 5:59 pm (1, Other multimedia) (, , , , , , , , , )

After I found out about gnash (blog article here) – the open source Shockwave flash player, I thought why FOSS people are not programming an application to build flash movies so we can have it running on Linux. I was wrong, they’ve already built one… and it’s one of the best! It’s core is based on open source Adobe Flex language. IDE is written using C# (.NET Framework) and ported to Linux by mono and GTK#. Look the below screenshots to see how nice it is..

Open Dialect 0.6 running on mono 1.9 in FC9

Open Dialect 0.6 running on mono 1.9 in FC9

It’s easy to use as the flash, and this gives people the ability to build flash contents very fast which would be put on the internet. It’s flash-like because, it has all those programming components (buttons, sliders,text boxes, labels etc…) with the drawing components (circles,lines,squares,tables etc..); and it has the noticeable time line too. All of these can be dragged and dropped like in flash or VB. There are wizards for beginners like in MS Office, but If you need, you can switch to the flex code right away. This program is like power point because it allows transitions between “slides” like in PP.

The most important 2 features of this program is:

  • It can export Flash 9 SWF’s

  • It can design & compile AIR (Adobe Integrated Runtime) applications

Anyone knows how flash and AIR rocking the internet these days. This makes open-dialect a FOSS community priority, as it may be the only FOSS applications to handle both these types. Some people already say open dialect is the future of flash IDE’s.

Building a AIR application using OD

Building a AIR application using OD

For more information, you can visit their home site at this link.

Installing

It’s easy as ABC as pre-compiled binaries are already avialable. Download the version 0.6 from this link. Double click on the compressed .tar.gz file and drag and drop where you want them to be. Run the file opendialect. In the command line use the command ./opendialect (Please notice that your Linux distribution should be new enough for this).

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Gnash – The FOSS Shockwave flash player

May 3, 2009 at 10:18 am (Linux codecs, Other multimedia) (, , , , , , , , , )

When I say “shockwave flash” people usually do not understand it. This is not the flash movies you find on youtube (.flv); these are .SWF files which works as animations, programs (ex: some games & programs you play in net). As Macromedia (now owned by Adobe) has 100% successful players for these, they are not open source! And i’m afraid they can’t play standalone flash programs (.exe) created for Windows in Linux ! (and Gnash can)

Gnash 0.8.3 playing torpedojoe.exe on FC9

Gnash 0.8.3 playing torpedojoe.exe on FC9

Gnash player evolved from the GameSWF, and now is the only active FOSS flash player project.

Gnash features (Version 0.8.3 which I have),

  • Plays SWF up to version 7

  • Plays .exe standalone SWF up to V7

  • Has plugins for Firefox and Konqueror

  • Plays some .flv files

And many exporting functions which i’m not used to that much. Click here to go to their homepage.

Installing

Gnash has .rpm packages for Fedora,Mandriva, Suse. It can be simply installed by (when you’re root)

yum install gnash

I have seen some .deb packages in the net, so ubuntu,mint,debian users can have a try

sudo apt-get gnash

For installing from the source, you can download the source for version 0.8.5 here. After untaring the file, typing

./configure

make

make install will do the job, for more information on how to compile from source click here.

After installing, you can use command

gnash <filename> to run a file

just typing gnash only will give you the command -flags help, which is very helpful for using powerful gnash command line functions. I’m not going to fill the space up here with them.

Platforms

Gnash can render SWF on 3 different libraries. Default is the agg, which has the best quality and bug free output — but this may make it little bit slow, and requires some dependencies. (as the agg itself). Anyway, if you have a good VGA card and 100% working drivers, you may go for opengl. Just use

–enable-renderer=opengl when configuring (ex: ./configure –enable-renderer=opengl)

Same manner cairo can be used –enable-renderer=cairo

By default, gnash uses Gstreamer framework (Click about on Totem to see what you have) which is the most efficient. But you can use

–enable-media=ffmpeg

if you have ffmpeg and SDL libraries installed. (This is not recommended).

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The mystery of Airpress: What happened to the best wordpress desktop client?

May 1, 2009 at 11:19 am (Linux News, Other multimedia) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Once upon a time, there was an application called AirPress, which came out as an Adobe Integrated Runtime (AIR) app, rocking the wordpress with a storm which the wordpress bloggers haven’t experienced before…. a fully-functional desktop publishing client for wordpress. It was so advance that it can just record your web cam videos live on the blog you’re writing ! (with edition 0.3 beta – in .flv format).

Although we have many desktop publishers today, at the time it came out (2007), there was none noticeable. And the program was still in the beta stage, running on the then AIR beta, but giving tremendous results. Look at the screenshots below, anyone really will fall in love.

Airpress 0.3 beta screenshot (extracted from www.quickonlinetips.com)

Airpress 0.3 beta screenshot (extracted from http://www.quickonlinetips.com)

According to Saad Hamid (blog article) – airpress had these amazing capabilities

  • Custom / animated windows

  • Embedded database for offline read/creation of posts

  • Detection offline / online

  • File I/O API for saving FLV webcam videos record

  • ActionScript / JavaScript Script bridging to interact with the text editor made in HTML/javascript.

  • Drag and Drop Support for the media (pictures, sounds, videos, flash animations…) you want to insert in your post.

  • Network communication with the blogs via XML-RPC

airpress blog post manager

airpress blog post manager (extracted from http://www.sizlopedia.com)

So why i’m digging history again? I installed AIR last week, and I found this airpress application in almost all the top 10 AIR app lists. So I decided to search and download the .air file. Every site on the search results list gave a same link http://www.airpress.org/airpress.air which actually redirected to some air (physical) utility site? (picture below) It seems like dummy meta-search engine put there just to fill the space! This was not the site in 2008!

The new Airpress.org ! (screenshot from www.airpress.org)

The new Airpress.org ! (screenshot from http://www.airpress.org)

After trying many links, I came to this link http://airpress.10001downloads.com/download and so a free “external” download link below. And they say external ones are not reliable, of course coz it’s the same link above! I think they have the app, but want us to pay money for the mirror! A link for the 0.31 version is available http://software.emule.com/airpress-0-31/download.php but it did not work with my AIR 1.5 version which is strange.

A more interesting thing, in almost every blog post on airpress, you can find this comment about a similar program bookmash —— “A new application named Bookmash has been created with the functionnalities of Airpress and a lot of others functionnalities like mp3, video, picture search and download… Try it!” —– and same exact thing in different commenter name! But this program http://www.bookmash.com sucks, and have no capability as airpress! The same comment appeared on all these blogs below: (and many more)

http://air.flash-ripper.com/archives/001877.php

http://www.quickonlinetips.com/archives/2007/09/airpress-blogging-client-powered-by-adobe-air/

http://blog.bittube.com/2007/09/26/airpress-desktop-video-blogging-comes-to-wordpress-thanks-to-adobe-air/

http://www.sizlopedia.com/2007/09/29/airpress-desktop-blogging-client-powered-by-adobe-air/

http://nisheet.wordpress.com/2007/09/27/airpress-blogging-on-wordpress/

I feel something fishy in all this. Anyway, i’m not a good investigator, I just gave the facts here. People who are good at it please dig!

Finally saying, i’m yet to try airpress because I can’t find it anywhere in the net or torrents. Any possible down links are welcome!

For people who don’t know about AIR platform — it’s an interpreter like java, which is machine independent. The core is based on adobe’s technologies such as acrobat, flash, flex,shockwave and non-adobe action script and ajax. So simply, AIR applications can do what these programs do easily, and the code is easier than java.

get it here: http://get.adobe.com/air/

some interesting apps: http://tnerd.com/2007/10/02/best-applications-adobe-air-top/

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