YouView – Smart TV UI

YouView is a Smart TV service in the UK, a spin-off of a BBC RnD project which runs on Set Top Boxes and certain Smart TVs. I worked on the core UI for years and thought I’d share some insights into best practices when building applications for such resource constrained devices.


 

Continue reading YouView – Smart TV UI


 

Game packaged with AIR running on 3 different mobile devices

I just tried packaging a game, written in AS3, for my iPad, PlayBook and BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha device – works pretty well!

Chinese Handwriting Recognition App

Unlike the iPad, the BlackBerry PlayBook has rather poor international keyboard support, with no method for entering chinese characters. I like the way iOS achieves this, so went about building my own version in ActionScript. Continue reading Chinese Handwriting Recognition App

SmoothBitmap – How to ensure Bitmap pixel smoothing in AS3

A common oversight in Flash projects, when using a Bitmap with loaded content is that Flash will revert a Bitmap’s smoothing parameter to false when you replace its bitmapData. That is, when the data loads into the Bitmap, anti-aliasing will get turned off. This is simple enough to fix, but since you may not know if someone is going to replace the bitmapData of a Bitmap you have created – then it’s much better to code defensively for it.


 

This little SmoothBitmap class is for just such an occasion. Instantiate it like a regular Bitmap and, no matter what another developer does with it, smooth, anti aliased pixels when scaling/rotating will be ensured. Enjoy 🙂

CODING WRONGS – Where do I start with the bad?

It gets scary out there sometimes. During my freelance career I’ve worked at a lot of different companies and have seen such coding horrors as you cannot imagine. So I thought I’d start immortalising some of them – so that we can all learn better coding practices, by looking at the bad.


 

Starter for 10 – What’s wrong with this picture?

Did you spot the fubar? It’s not an obvious one. Continue reading CODING WRONGS – Where do I start with the bad?

TextField.getRawText() what it does

I was recently creating an API that required extending TextField and happened across the getRawText() method. I assumed this returned the text from the field without formatting or something – so I looked up the AS3 docs for flash.text.TextField.

Nothing there – gee thanks Adobe. A quick search turned up this which, it turns out, isn’t quite accurate.

So, with a tad of testing, it appears that getRawText() returns the text, stripped of any HTML tags (if you had set htmlText). I now wonder if this is faster than using a RegEx to strip the tags and why Adobe didn’t document it?

Loan Shark – fast object pooling utility

LoanShark AS3 Object Pooling UtilityA couple of years ago, I created an object pooling utility for a games project I was building in AS3. Since then, I’ve used it quite a few times, in order to speed up apps and improve resource management, easing the load on the garbage collector by reusing objects instead of recreating them. Continue reading Loan Shark – fast object pooling utility

Lurpak Breakfast – Behind the screens

Winning two DMA awards back in 2009, I thought I’d give a quick insight into how the animation effects in this piece were achieved. Continue reading Lurpak Breakfast – Behind the screens

Motion graphics, video production, games/app development and infosec.

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