Topic: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

Is it possible to develop in Flash without buying the official Macromedia Flash release? Has the open source community came out with a working equivalent?

I known nothing about Flash, and have looked around on Google but I haven't seen anything. I want to do a little Flash applet to compliment my site. I'm hoping $700 is not truly a prerequisite for it.

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

I looked into this about a year ago and to give the short answer: No.
There are resources for writing ActionScript programs and develop Flash Apps that way, but there is to my knowledge still no working open source IDE for Flash that is even remotely equivalent to Macromedia/Adobe's products. There have been several attempts, but at the time when I looked around, they were more or less useless... The following is the one that receives the most attention I think: http://sourceforge.net/projects/flameproject/ Looks decent at least......
There is a site dedicated to open source flash, maybe you can find something there: http://www.osflash.org/

Jonas

Last edited by JonasE (2006-11-08 18:06:09)

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

There's a 30 day trial for the Flash IDE, so if it's just a one-time thing, you may want to use that. It may have other limitations though.

Railscasts - Free Ruby on Rails Screencasts

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

That's disappointing. Flash first came out in what, 1997? That's disappointing that in ten years no one has opened it up.

I might settle for a java applet instead. Actually I think the java applet's sandbox would restrict me too much. I might be able to pull this off with clever dynamically loaded images. I'll have to play around.

And I did check out that osflash.org site. It's focus is actual flash apps that are open source, not open source flash tools.

Oh well, thanks.

Last edited by tortoise (2006-11-08 19:55:10)

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

There's Swish, which is a $99.95 Flash authoring tool (Swish Max): http://www.swishzone.com/index.php ... but I don't know really how it compares to the real thing, or if it is capable of what you want to do.  However you might be able to find out on their forums... or search Google for "Swish" and there are a number of third-party sites for the product.

Josh Catone helps run this place
Rails Forum - Rails Jobs

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

Swish is interesting, it has the timeline but apparently its own scripting language??  Most everything else is the other way around.

Anyway, basically, Flash is done with two different methodologies (I think there's even quite a difference between a flash artist and a flash developer):
-- animation: animation is easiest to develop through the timeline
-- scripting: interactivity is easiest to develop through actionscript

actionscript was just recently released to the mozilla team, and you can use Flex SDK to do a lot of heavy lifting for Flash interaction.  The Flex SDK is available for free from Adobe.

complex animation is the reason you would need a timeline.  You can get animation from Flash, apparently Swish too ...  So, how to tell if you need a timeline?
  If you want to build an interface with elaborate, scripted motion (think about the splash pages when you first arrive at some sites, or straight up animation), you kinda need Flash.
  If you want to build a nice, rich, media-centric interface, flex will do it for you.

I'm speaking out my <explicitive>, I'm not really a Flash developer and I'm just learning Flex... but this is from what I gather.

Last edited by robbiemuffin (2007-01-16 20:05:43)

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

If your looking to develop flash applications(not flash animations), you can use the adobe's own flex sdk for free. You can develope flex aaplications or actiosnscript 3(AS3) applications. Both flex and AS3 apps compile out to standard .swf files, but you might need to be using flash player 9, so depending on your target audience, be wary. Adobe claims 99 percent coverage so whatever.

Basically how it works you can use the command line compiler staight up or you can use eclipse and hook it into the flex compiler. If your on a mac you can use xcode or textmate or eclipse to compile stuff.

I dont know if your on mac or pc, but google for terms such as "flex sdk windows eclipse" or "flex sdk xcode" or "flex sdk textmate" "mxmlc compiler"

I am still getting myself setup with this so i'm not too versed in setting it all up, but this does exist and does work, thought i tell you.

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

If you're really serious, anything that can be done in the timeline can be done through actionscript.  There's a drawing api for building graphics and lots of ways to interact.  It ain't the easiest way to go though.  I'm an intermediate actionscripter (many be a little above after i finish this project of dynamically creating a pie chart that moves through the use of multiple sliders for work, real pain in the arse).  If you have any questions I'd be glad to help as best I can.

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

You could try out Flashdevelop at flashdevelop.org.It's a very good open source actionscript editor that uses the free flex 2 or flex 3(beta) SDK.

Re: Develop Flash apps with opensource tools?

tortoise wrote:

I known nothing about Flash, and have looked around on Google but I haven't seen anything. I want to do a little Flash applet to compliment my site. I'm hoping $700 is not truly a prerequisite for it.

What kind of Flash applet? Moving pictures? Interactive menus?

There is Java, there is also Wink for tutorials and interactive menus rendered in Flash,
http://www.debugmode.com/wink/ (I don't know how open it is, but it's free)

and then for the more complicated stuff in Flash, not really applets, there is Laszlo. Laszlo came before Flex, but only opened it up after Macromedia came up with Flex (so I do not know how truly open they are).
http://www.laszlosystems.com/demos

and I guess, you could also use javascript, CSS, and images to mimic some effects that are done in flash. Those don't really answer your original question, of course, but they may do depending on your end goal.

- spike