macromedia director commitment faq

Adobe’s Tom Higgins is pointing to a new Macromedia Director and Adobe Shockwave Player FAQ on the Adobe website:

Most significant is that Adobe is expecting a new Director release in 2007 and are committed to continued investment and development.

With 14 of the 21 FAQ items dedicated to the Google Toolbar bundled offered with Shockwave Player I wonder if the document would be more aptly named the Macromedia Director, Adobe Shockwave Player and Google Toolbar FAQ.

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free director update will include flash 8 xtra

I can hear the Director users squealing with delight.

Adobe’s Tom Higgins has announced an update to the Shockwave Player and Director IDE that will include a Flash 8 Asset Xtra as well as fix some bugs related to QuickTime7 in the QuickTime Asset Xtra. I was fortunate enough to get a couple of sneak peeks at the Flash Xtra at Max last fall and have to admit that the “convert” functionality looked very cool.

When this update drops next month it will come nearly 6 months after the Flash Player 8 was released. (And Authorware developers will still be waiting). Such a delay really is unfortunate and I think needs to be addressed. I’m not so naive as to think that putting the Asset Xtras together is anywhere near a simple task, however I do feel that too often the various applications are on their seperate development cycles and the Xtra only gets updated based on them. When developing Authorware or Director applications we have the luxury of not having to be concerned with uptake of new Flash Players so why not take advantage of it?

Anyhow, to make that pill alot less bitter for my Director friends Tom mentions that this will be a free update. Hmm, a free Flash Xtra update for Authorware sure would make the wait for the long rumoured Authorware 8 a little less anxious…

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shockwave player unbundles weatherbug addon

Well this is pleasant news. Thanks for listening Macromedia.

Tom Higgin mentions in this post that the WeatherBug will no longer be offered with the Shockwave Player installer. I had a thought about this last month when the installer first started including the WeatherBug desktop weather application offer to users in the United States. That was prior to the Flash Player and Yahoo Toolbar brouhaha and in that light I see this announcment as having added significance (reassurance).

Who wants to be the first to call me a naif?

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shockwave player bundles more third party add-ons

Macromedia have announced an update to the Shockwave Player the Shockwave Player installer and apparently the only change to this version is the addition of something called the WeatherBug desktop weather application. According to this technote WeatherBug will only be offered to U.S. customers who also have the Yahoo Toolbar installed. You may recall that the Yahoo Toolbar is also offered as part of the Shockwave player installation.

I haven’t developed any web based Director pieces for 5 (or more) years so don’t know why this chafes me. Perhaps it’s that I worry a little that Macromedia will pull something similar with the Authorware web player (though I have my doubts). Macromedia seem to offer two basic explanations for this move saying that it is a part of their commitment to provide great services and user experiences to our customers as well as it being an effort to increase the visibility and resources dedicated to Shockwave Player.

I was curious about how the part about making the WeatherBug available to U.S. customers would go so I installed the Shockwave 10.1 player in IE and permitted it to install the Yahoo Toolbar. Next I uninstalled Shockwave and then ran the installer again. Sure enough I was presented with a “Macromedia and WeatherBug are pleased to offer the #1 desktop weather software” dialog. Not exactly what I was expecting as I would not consider myself a U.S. customer (in fact some of my Canadian compatriots are rather vocal about that). Still curious I left the Install WeatherBug box checked and moved to the next screen which prompted for a U.S. zip code and required a valid one to continue. I backed out.

Anyhow, I’m still curious if the zip code entry screen is the sole method for recognizing U.S. customers or if there is some more sophisticated “localization” detection going on behind the scenes. Anyone have a different experience? Also, my mind’s still open and I would be interested in hearing a bit more about the benefits of these promotions.

I first picked this up from Macromedia’s Tom Higgins.

Update: It seems the installer identifies U.S. users by the computer’s regional settings. I modified the setting and was able to reinstall without the WeatherBug offer.

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