SUSHI MultiUser Server for Flash, Flash Lite, J2SE & J2ME

There aren’t a lack of mutli-user servers out there that work with Flash, but this one has some great features:

Supports Flash MX AS1.0 & 2.0, FlashLite, J2SE, J2ME.
Extend the SUSHI server with Java or Actionscript.
SUSHI supports socket and…

There aren’t a lack of mutli-user servers out there that work with Flash, but this one has some great features:

  • Supports Flash MX AS1.0 & 2.0, FlashLite, J2SE, J2ME.
  • Extend the SUSHI server with Java or Actionscript.
  • SUSHI supports socket and HTTP connections (HTTP tunneling.)
  • SUSHI provides a web based, graphical administration.
  • Free 30 user license edition.
  • Hosting.

What really caught my eye of course is that they have included a Flash Lite API, it uses a polling solution to keep the connection open, but it appears very flexible and neat.

One other thing that I was really impressed with is the beautiful documentation, they have really gone to town with examples and diagrams, nice job.

Check out SUSHI’s home page. (thanks to Madokan for the link.)

RASH 1.1 Released (SWF “Wrapper”)

RASH is best described as a tiny server app that you can launch from a standalone projector, once it is running you can perform a variety of tasks from your Flash movie, including:

Database Access
AI and Natural Language Processing
FTP, TCP, UDP, PO…

RASH is best described as a tiny server app that you can launch from a standalone projector, once it is running you can perform a variety of tasks from your Flash movie, including:

  • Database Access
  • AI and Natural Language Processing
  • FTP, TCP, UDP, POP etc
  • Document creation/management including the ability to generate any type of document on the fly, like Word docs, .pdf etc.
  • Built-in Encryption RSA, Blowfish and others.
  • Send and receive emails directly via built-in SMTP / POP, APOP, IMAP support

I think it’s one of the strangest but nevertheless useful alternatives to third party SWF wrappers such as mProjector and Zinc (but it can also be used in conjunction with, as shown in the demo). It comes in a free personal version, and a commercial pro version ($30) so be sure to check it out at Power of Q.

I think it’s command processor is written in Rebol, which would explain the claim to “run without modification on Windows, Macintosh, Linux, BSD, Amiga, BeOS, Solaris, SGI, HP UX, SCO Unix, and more.” One other thing to mention is that the Demo is not so straight forward, when you run Demo.exe the project opens in a transparent window, you have to click the blue dot to enter commands. Sample commands can be found in code.txt to get you going, but check out the FLA to see how you would incorporate these commands in a non-text input centric UI (i.e. not responding to textual input, but button presses for example).

MXNA Flash Lite App

Ok, so this is my first attempt at using the new MXNA Flash Lite services. I must say, apart from the initial problem with the feed, now fixed thanks for Christian and Mike, it all went very smoothly.

You can run the app in the regular Flash player…

Ok, so this is my first attempt at using the new MXNA Flash Lite services. I must say, apart from the initial problem with the feed, now fixed thanks for Christian and Mike, it all went very smoothly.

You can run the app in the regular Flash player here (remember the key mappings, PageUp and PageDown are your phones softkeys).

You can download it for your phone here (including source code!)

Finally, here’s a quick screenshot:

MXNALite

Mobile Browser War

With news of Nokia’s recent announcement that they will be developing a new browser for series 60 devices based on Apple’s Web Kit (via DigitalMediaMinute), I took a little look at my page hits, and noticed over 150 hits from Symbian OS, ok ok so that wa…

With news of Nokia’s recent announcement that they will be developing a new browser for series 60 devices based on Apple’s Web Kit (via DigitalMediaMinute), I took a little look at my page hits, and noticed over 150 hits from Symbian OS, ok ok so that was trailing both Amiga OS and BeOS, but still, that’s grown ten-fold in the last two months, and I expect this to rise steadily.

Perhaps we are now seeing the realisation of mobiles as the content-centric device that we all hoped for when the screens became colorful and the processors that little bit faster. The only thing standing in the way is the cost of data transfer, with 3G rising in popularity here in the U.K. the mobile carriers still feel they can charge the same rates as with GPRS and GSM, only now the downloads are significantly larger.

Russell Beattie posts on the applications he uses in his phone, and they include two extra web browsers inlcuding the very smart mobile edition of Opera. Hopefully Nokia’s effort will lead to something a little more revolutionary rather than scaling down existing technology. Either way, this is another oppurtunity to say, things are hotting up!

Flash Lite in a Nutshell

Just a quick post to say this Thursday I’ll be doing a presentation on Flash Lite at the London MMUG and would love to see anyone interested down there. Also presenting is Rob Bateman of the BBC on best practices for developing components and the upcomi…

Just a quick post to say this Thursday I’ll be doing a presentation on Flash Lite at the London MMUG and would love to see anyone interested down there. Also presenting is Rob Bateman of the BBC on best practices for developing components and the upcoming SMX component set, so there should be something for everybody from designers to hardcore coders, just click link at the bottom of the site to attend for free.

Some thing’s I will cover:

  • Why Flash for mobiles?
  • Examples of what can be done.
  • Setting up your mobile studio, getting the write tools for the right setup.
  • Creating basic content and testing (inc. packaging/deploying).
  • Limitations (both with Flash Lite and devices).
  • Flash Lite best practices.
  • Common pitfalls.
  • Integrating Flash Lite apps with desktop Flash applications and server side logic (inc. a chat application using PHP polling).
  • Integrating Flash Lite with Symbian/J2ME for more functionality.
  • The future of the profile and devices.

So I very much hope to see you there. On that note, I’ve just created an area at the Flash Mobile Community for people to showcase their apps and games. This is just another place for you to display your wares for people to comment on, very much like the Flash Exchange, be sure to check out the excellent LiteAsAGoog, TrafficLite, ChatMX and ever expanding Kero platform. Anyone can add their apps instantly, so please do!

BlueSkyNorth SWF2SIS (Flash Lite)

Hot off the press, BlueskyNorth have just announced SWF2SIS is now officially released.

“In short, SWF2SIS provides a way to package your application .swf file with any extra files (sfws, txt files etc.) and attach an icon which will appear on the han…

Hot off the press, BlueskyNorth have just announced SWF2SIS is now officially released.

SWF2SIS
“In short, SWF2SIS provides a way to package your application .swf file with any extra files (sfws, txt files etc.) and attach an icon which will appear on the handset’s menu, then save it all in a single installer file.”

Very good news for Flash Lite developers, and at $40(£20), a great deal for those without the time or knowledge to mess around creating multiple config files that compile into another intermediary file and so on, when using the Symbian SDK. This is a new alternative to the packaging service offered by Silk Mobile, but this appears to be a standalone app / wizard.

Read more here.

“The Wild” – Prototype Flash Mobile Pet

I spent the last week working on something I wanted to try in Flash Lite. The result is a prototype for a virtual pet that will run on any Flash Lite enabled mobile phone.
I’ve created a very quick (and pretty rubbish) mini-site where you can download…

I spent the last week working on something I wanted to try in Flash Lite. The result is a prototype for a virtual pet that will run on any Flash Lite enabled mobile phone.

I’ve created a very quick (and pretty rubbish) mini-site where you can download the app, play an online emulated version and find out how to care for your creature. I still need to tweak the logic so that it is actually fun and addictive to play, but still, this is just a test app.

Visit the mini-site here.


Screenshot - The Wild

Future:

There are a few things I want to add to the Wild for a future version, I’m looking at distribution to a Japanese market, if anyone is interested please contact me. Anyway, future features:

  • Ability to fight other creatures from the Wild (user tables etc), pokemon style
  • Customisable creatures (heads, bodies, tails etc)
  • Downloadable and selectable backgrounds/rooms
  • Premium additions, new creatures/games etc
  • Online creches / extra games via desktop / forums etc

I also wanted to take this opportunity to point you towards a new edition to the Flash Lite Exchange. LiteAsAGoog is a Flash Lite FullAsAGoog client created by Paul Wilson who runs the Flash Lite mailing list. I also want to thank Paul for his testing of The Wild last night, it helped me to realise what needs doing (a help page for example!).

Remember to drop by the Flash Mobile Community from time to time, things are going to get busy. We have over 150 members now, just waiting on people using Flash Lite more and more as the handsets become mainstream and we should have some fun going on in there.

Renesis SVG Viewer vs Flash Player

My loyalty to Flash stands, of course, but I just picked up this video (35mb) over at FlashGroup.net. The video is a must see.

Renesis is an SVG viewer, soon to be web plug-in with some of the following features:

Very fast render speeds (see FPS h…

My loyalty to Flash stands, of course, but I just picked up this video (35mb) over at FlashGroup.net. The video is a must see.

Renesis is an SVG viewer, soon to be web plug-in with some of the following features:

  • Very fast render speeds (see FPS here).
  • C# Interpreter (.NET not required apparently).
  • Real-time lense distortion.
  • Editable 3D-path text / text on curve.
  • Inline PDF rendering in future.
  • Commercial Open-Source.

Something to look out for in light of past Adobe maneouvers in the SVG field and present MM aquisition. You can read more about Renesis here and here

Flash Lite Device Capabilities Database

It’s pretty essential that we understand which devices/handsets support which Flash Lite features. So following this discussion, I created a Flash app to collect and display the data. Onur Tekin and myself also set about adapting capabilities.swf (comes…

It’s pretty essential that we understand which devices/handsets support which Flash Lite features. So following this discussion, I created a Flash app to collect and display the data. Onur Tekin and myself also set about adapting capabilities.swf (comes with the FL CDK) to automatically send the data from your handset and have it recorded. (Thanks for kick starting that Onur I would have been too lazy without the push.)

FL DB Screenshot

View the web app here (90kb no preload)

Download the SWF for your phone here

Please let anyone you know that has a Flash Lite enabled handset about this, hopefully we can get quite a good reference going. If your device is already listed, but you have conflicting results, please email me, any comments and suggestions welcome as always!

Extra:

Please support the Flash Mobile Community 🙂

Update:

New Flash Lite SWF uploaded (now includes player version)

Flash Lite TV Guide: 8 Hours and 9k

I set myself a little challenge yesterday, I wanted to see just how quick it was to develop in Flash Lite, that being a major selling point. My chosen project was a (greatly simplified) version of Jermain Andersons TV Guide application. I’m not sure exac…

I set myself a little challenge yesterday, I wanted to see just how quick it was to develop in Flash Lite, that being a major selling point. My chosen project was a (greatly simplified) version of Jermain Andersons TV Guide application. I’m not sure exactly how he put his together, but I can talk about how I went about it. I’ve also provided all source code and a demo at the end.

First a demo

View in new window!

Now some info

The first step was to set up the XML files that contain the "playlists", I’ve created one for each of the major TV services in the U.K. and one for BBC radio channels, but you could easily create one for "Entertainment", one for "Movies" etc. Here’s a sample for your bog standard soon to be phased out terrestrial channels:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<channels>
	<channel title="BBC1" url="bbc1.xml" />
	<channel title="BBC2" url="bbc2.xml" />
	<channel title="ITV1" url="itv1.xml" />
	<channel title="Channel4" url="ch4.xml" />
	<channel title="five" url="five.xml" />
</channels>

Now of course Flash Lite cannot handle XML directly, so the next phase was to write some PHP files to spit this data out in name value pairs, something like this:

chTotal=6&ch0=BBC Radio 1&url0=bbc_radio1.xml&ch1=BBC Radio 2&url1=bbc_radio2.xml&ch2=BBC Radio 3&url2=bbc_radio3.xml&ch3=BBC Radio 4&url3=bbc_radio4.xml&ch4=BBC Radio 5Live&url4=bbc_radio5_live.xml&ch5=BBC Radio 5Live Sports&url5=bbc_radio5_live_sports_extra.xml

What is REALLY important to note here is that we are still operating on a 2.5G (GPRS) network or slower, 3G just isn’t that popular yet (unless your in Japan), so every single byte really does count, for this reason I’ve shortened "channel" to "ch" in the response, but I would go even further and use simple "c" if I weren’t distributing this app for others, it really does make a huge difference.

So with Flash now reading the data using emulated arrays (pdf link) we can start to show some channels, and the same process is used to display actual listings. Here’s a couple of screenshots:

Screen 1
Screen 2

Future enhancements

If I were to continue to develop this app, I’d be adding in some graphics to show what is currenly playing, a now and next page, and perhaps shave some extra bytes off the download (removing the : from times and replacing it in Flash etc), but for now it’ll do.

Download Source

Download all files here
Download just the SWF to put on your Flash Lite enabled phone here