Search EMediaLive
Research Center
Blu-ray Disc (BD)
CD-R/RW Drives
Copy Protection
Digital Audio
DVD Authoring Services
DVD Authoring Tools
HD/DVD/CD Duplication
HD/DVD/CD Printers
HD/DVD/CD Replication
Recording Software
Standards Issues
The DVD Market
Writable DVD Drives
Online Advertising
Subscribe to Newsletter
Privacy Policy

Other Related Sites
Streaming Media
Review: Macromedia Director MX
Posted Apr 1, 2003 Print Version     « previous Page 2of 2

Developers who want to create interactive content such as games and distance-learning applications can take advantage of integration with the new Flash Communication Server MX. The Director MX package includes a personal server edition of Flash Communications Server MX, but you'll need to purchase the enterprise edition separately if you intend to implement any substantial projects.

Making Your Content Accessible
Many developers, especially those involved in government or education, need to make their multimedia content accessible under Section 508 (or other accessibility laws) for users with various disabilities including those who have trouble with seeing or hearing, or have mobility issues. Director MX includes a new Accessibility library containing various accessibility behaviors. You can drag and drop a behavior from the library onto the Stage, or if you prefer more control, you can use new Lingo commands to code the accessibility behavior yourself.

Director MX provides built-in accessibility, meaning that you won't need a third-party program to implement your accessibility features. This gives you more control over the accessibility behavior and makes it easier to implement. For example, when you design your accessibility option, you can control tab order from a drop-down list in the Parameters for the "Accessibility Group Order" dialog box, a feature not commonly available in third-party screen reader programs.

Each accessibility command in the library contains help text in a pop-up box that explains how to use it. While this pop-up provides quick access to the information you need to implement an accessibility behavior, the text is too lengthy for a pop-up box. It's an awkward implementation of on-screen help, especially for a company with the resources of Macromedia.

Better Lingo Tools
The Director MX scripting language, Lingo, has been greatly improved in Director MX, giving developers access to better debugging tools and a more streamlined design. Thus, it's easier than in previous versions for users to access commands and find problems. When Director encounters a script error, the Script Error dialog box appears. Clicking the Debug button opens the Debugging window. Among the new features in the debugger are line numbers and color coding of recently altered variables—hardly ground-breaking changes, but welcomed ones nonetheless.

Once you complete the debugging process, you can return to the script with a click of a button in the Debugging window toolbar. The Script window includes two new tools to make it easier to find the correct Lingo command. One tool lists the commands alphabetically and the other organizes them by category. If you ever spent time poring over the Lingo dictionary trying to find the right command, the addition of these two tools should please you and should make adding commands a much faster process.

Macromedia has also added a powerful new feature that detects any Xtras you are using, and lists any Lingo commands associated with the Xtras in your individual project in the Script toolbar. This makes adding Xtra-specific Lingo commands a snap and saves lots of time spent trying to find the correct commands.

To MX or Not to MX, That is the Question
Given that this is the first major upgrade to Director in some time, you might expect a bit more than the MX overhaul and a few new features. I can't help feeling that they should have done more for a major release. When all is said and done, you need to look at your own organization and decide if the upgrade is worth it to you. If you are in the market for a multimedia development tool, or if you have already upgraded to other Macromedia MX products, you should go with Director MX because it certainly contains enough ease-of-use features to justify the upgrade (or a new purchase), especially its smooth integration with Flash MX and (to a lesser extent) Fireworks MX. But if you're comfortable with your older version of Director, you may justifiably wonder if it wouldn't be better to just stand pat.

Click Here to subscribe to EMedia Xtra!

Click Here to view Blu-Ray FAQ!

Click Here to view HD/DVD FAQ!
Print Version   « previous Page 2of 2


Maps - Adobe Illustrator Vector Format
Maps of the World & USA in Adobe Illustrator vector format. All fully editable. Royalty Free for use in print, web, etc. Buy and download 24/7.

Add your link here>>

CD Duplication Equipment, CD Publishing, CD Duplicators, by MF Digital
Primera Technology - DVD Duplicators CD Duplication and Disc Printers
ProAction Media - The CD / DVD Duplication Service and Equipment Pros
CD Duplicator and DVD Duplicator Experts - Summation
DVD duplicators, CD duplication by Disc Makers
Fast, Accurate CD and DVD Duplication Services from DiscNow
Mediatechnics CD & DVD Production Services
Blank CDs, Blank DVDs from Disc Makers
Tapestockonline One Stop Media Shop - DVD’s, Publishers, Ink, Mini DV and HD
DVD duplicator, CD printer and DVD / CD copier machines from StorDigital
CD Mastering, Audio Mastering from the Soundlab at Disc Makers
DVD Duplicators and CD Duplication Equipment at Octave
DVD Duplication DVD Replication, Dallas, Houston, Boston, Philadelphia