Links of the month (May 2009)

Links and news I want to share with you this month:

1. Photo! Presentation Widget - "an online service allowing you to create beautiful 3D albums or flash-based slideshows with your photos or photos from the web. A tremendous feature is that created photo widgets are embeddable on websites, blogs, and social networks with just one mouse click. Currently, the service can extract photos from Flickr™ photo service and also allows adding any image by its URL or from your computer".

2. Flash Earth - not new, but still lovable website. Exactly as the name says, you can explore Earth inside a single Flash-based interface. Imagery is taken from multiple sources including NASA, Microsoft and more.

3. Autodesk Project Dragonfly - " experiment in real time with your ideas in 2D and 3D before making it real!". A free online floor planning tool for virtual home designing.

4. Free Flash Logos - various background images, font choices, and color choices to make your free flash logo.

5. Flash Tips and Techniques Tutorials - nice selection of Flash tutorials. "Learn how to work in 3D, drawing techniques, text effects, tips and tricks, ActionScript, and more! "

Stay tuned!

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How to publish Flash slideshow to Blogger

After publishing my post about software bundle of watermarking software and flash slideshow maker I received lots of feedback not only of the kind I expected. The half of questions was not about software in the bundle but about how I add Flash slideshows to the posts and Blogger sidebar. To answer your questions, I write this post. The software I used was FlashSlider. I like it because it’s simple and creates slideshows that are nice but not overcharged with visual effect – exactly what is needed for blog and especially for sidebar. Of course, you can use your favorite flash slideshow creator to do that. Let’s embed flash slideshow in Blogger in 4 easy steps.

Create flash photo slideshow and copy its HTML code to clipboard. Before creating a slideshow, estimate needed canvas size. For sidebars, slideshow width is usually about 170 pixels, for posts - about 525. Slideshow height depends on size and orientation of photos you use. Nevertheless, for different templates these values vary, so you’d better to measure you sidebar or post field width. In Firefox or Flock, it can be easily done with MeasureIt add-on. When slideshow is created, copy its HTML code given by your slideshow maker to clipboard.

Create a new post or add gadget in Blogger and paste the slideshow code. I presume you know how to create posts in Blogger :) . Only one advice for beginners – slideshow code should be pasted not into visual editor field (Compose tab), but in HTML editor field (HTML tab).

The code will look like this:

You won’t see flash slideshow in visual editor field even after pasting its code, but it will be shown in preview.

If you want to publish your slideshow to the sidebar, go to your Blogger Dashboard, then to Layout > Page elements, click Add a Gadget, select HTML/JavaScript gadget and paste your slideshow code into the Content field.

Upload Flash slideshow to the Web and copy its address. “Where should I upload my swf slideshow to?” is one of the most often questions. I use Google Sites to store my files – you can create your own website at and upload your files to it. To copy the link of uploaded file, right-click it and select Copy link location or Copy link address or something like these :) .

Paste the slide show URL into its HTML code. The URL of slideshow you’ve copied is the source URL to be pasted into slideshow HTML code.

That’s all and you’re done. Publish a post or save you gadget and enjoy your Flash Blogger slideshow.

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What Flash is used for - statistics

In one of my previous posts, I offered you a poll about How and what for do you use Flash. Thank you very much for your votes and comment – votes are still coming but I think it's time to publish the final results. There are not much statistics about how people use Flash in the Web. Nevertheless, I've coped to found some sources with such data and I'll compare my results with the other surveys results.

As you can see, the leader in both columns is website design and development – yes, flash websites become more and more popular now. The second place is for fun/amusement – I presume that the figures would be larger if the surveys were carried out not by resources for people interested in Flash. In this case, using flash for fun may take the first place. The next are creation of Flash animation and application development. And the last places are shared by "I don't use Flash" and "I don't actually know what Flash is". Again, I believe that these figures can be larger on other resources. Thanks everyone who took part in my survey. Stay tuned for the next interesting findings!

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Create Flash websites and widgets for free

I've found a great resource for creating flash websites and widgets - This website offers a wide range of free flash website designs and widget designs. All you have to do is to choose the desired template and customize it. Options to customize are numerous - you can add whatever you need to a template, resize, recolor, add effects and different behaviors, and so on. As almost every 'flashy' thing, template editor is a bit slow, nevertheless it works very smooth. I was amazed by the number and quality of free features, and for now I haven't seen website that can compete with in creating free flash websites. This is my first test widget created with

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