Beta testers needed!

January 29, 2010 at 2:01 pm 7 comments

I need beta testers to use my e2publish AIR application.  Can anyone spare some time, or help me spread the word through their blogs and twitter?  It’s a very sophisticated project, and as well as bug reports – It could benefit from any suggestions, feedback and discussion.

Recap: I develop these applications in my own time, when I’m not working on commercial Flex projects.  e2publish is an ambitious project to allow users to collaborate and create snazzy magazine-style electronic-publications.  Later, I will also introduce features to enable the creation of much more interactive content.  (hotpots, animations, slide-shows, etc.).

Here is an example of the kinds of pages you can create in the current version.  (download/update now!)

e2publish is pure actionscript, and utilises Adobe’s Text Layout Framework, and Squiggly spell-check technologies.

Also in the works, I have a “viewing” application called e2network, which will allow users to browse, subscribe to, and read e2publish magazines.  It is my intention to create versions of e2network for the desktop, iPod, and iPad.  I see electronic magazines of this kind to be a killer-application for tablet devices.

e2publish can import graphs or illustrations from my other AIR applications: e2spreadsheet and e2vector.  I would also appreciate any user feedback about these applications too.

So, please please help me test this and get through to version 1.0 (currently version 0.253).  Here is a suggested testing plan.  You don’t have to stick to this though – just a guideline…

SUGGESTED E2PUBLISH TESTING PLAN

Please report:-

1. Bugs.  (Tell me exactly what steps to perform in order to reproduce the problem).

2. Difficulties.  (Anything that is difficult to understand or operate).

3. Suggestions as to how the application can be improved.  New features, etc.

BASIC FUNCTIONALITY

Install e2publish, e2spreadsheet and e2vector.

Create a document with more than one page of text.

Highlight portions of text (using the highlighter).

Change the background colour of each page.

Apply one, two, or three column formats to pages.

Import pictures into your document.

Import graphs and drawings into your document.  (Created using e2spreadsheet and e2vector)

Click on pictures/graphs/drawings to select them.  Change their placement, frame, shadow, and colour, etc. using the PICTURE palette.  (left pop-out palettes).

Apply other changes using left pop-out palettes.

Apply Cut, Copy, Paste, Undo and Redo to the actions above.

Save, Save As… and Open documents.  (Use the File menu, or click on saved document icons, or drag documents onto application icon.)

PAGE LAYOUT

Modify a page layout.  Click on the arrow icon (between the “e:” and “A” icons).  On this screen, you can:-

Resize and move linked text boxes.

Create new linked text boxes.

Create and position text boxes (stand alone- not linked).

Create and position pull-quotes.

Delete Text Boxes.

Change the appearance of a text box.  Colour, gradient, style, etc.
– using text box drop-down menu.

Add page layouts to favourites
– Use the + symbol within the templates drop-down menu.
– Apply a favourite layout to a particular page.

Apply Cut, Copy, Paste, Undo and Redo to the actions above.

SHARED DOCUMENTS

Click on the “e:” symbol and create a new account.

Log-in.

Browse projects and shared files.

Open shared e2publish documents.

Import shared e2spreadsheet graphs and e2vector drawings into your e2publish document.

Share your own documents.  Online->Share this Document

…Thank you for your valuable contribution.

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Entry filed under: Adobe AIR, e2publish, iPod/iPad/iPhone, Pure ActionScript, Text Layout Framework. Tags: .

Some thoughts about the iPad, and stuff. Further thoughts about the iPad, Flash, and what Jobs said.

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Tom Chiverton  |  January 29, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    A very cursory test here on Linux confirms it’s OK.

    Reply
  • 2. Gianfranco  |  February 1, 2010 at 8:38 am

    you plan to release the part of text display with TLF as Flex/AIR components ?

    Reply
    • 3. e2easy  |  February 1, 2010 at 3:52 pm

      No.

      Reply
  • [...] of what AS3 can do that JavaScript can’t)  I’m not even sure that an application like e2publish, with its control over text formatting, is even possible in [...]

    Reply
  • 5. Benjamin Porter  |  February 2, 2010 at 7:27 pm

    Looks great. It was interesting to see someone else’s implementation of text wrapping images. We implemented wrapping in our yearbook publishing application, and struggled with performance of the tlf when wrapping lines with multiple formats around images and had to take some short cuts to balance performance versus precision. We have a few more wrapping strategies implemented (transparent portions of images, above below, left, right, bounding box, tight to a shape) but your implementation should cover what most people need.

    If you don’t mind answering a few questions about how you were able to implement squiggly on top of the tlf I’d love to share information with you. Are you using Spark components for text or tlf text flows and containers?

    Reply
    • 6. e2easy  |  February 2, 2010 at 11:29 pm

      I’ve implemented squiggly on top of TLF by the simplest, quickest, and dirtiest way possible. But If you’re interested, and I assume others are too – then I’ll write about this on my blog. I’ll probably get around to it at the weekend. (There’s a small bug in spell checking too that I spotted today – I’ll fix that soon.)

      I’m using TLF text flows and containers. e2publish is custom Pure ActionScript, no Flex components.

      I plan to implement wrapping tight to the shape. But I don’t know when this will be.

      Having watched Apple’s presentation of iWork on the iPad, particularly pages – this has raised the bar, and this project feels much more daunting than it did before.

      I don’t think I need to share information about the implementation details, but I’d be interested in your experience of moneytizing your application. (Was it eDesign?).

      I jumped into selling RIAs much too early (Macromedia Central) when neither the technology nor the market was ready. I just invest hobby time into e2publish, and balance that with my freelance Flex bread-and-butter work.

      Reply
  • 7. avery  |  February 5, 2010 at 12:02 am

    i want to try it

    Reply

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