What’s new in EDAP Tools v.3

After more than two years of development the Electric Dog team is proud to introduce Electric Dog Flash Animation Power Tools v.3.0.0.0.

This is a major stable release, bringing enhanced functionality and exciting new features to the growing community of Flash animation professionals using our package.

Change log

1. Structural changes:

  • Logical pairs of commands have been bundled together to keep clutter in Commands menu to a minimum, i.e. now we have fewer commands, but richer functionality. Also many commands are now multi-functional.
  • All commands have been renumbered and rearranged according to a workspace / workflow logic and with additional flexibility for future development in mind.
  • Universal F8-CS shortcut sets for Windows and Mac allowing faster and better left-hand access to functions via single-key and two-key shortcuts.
  • Tighter command-shortcut integration.
  • Own universal installer, independent of constantly changing and unreliable Adobe Extensions Manager, which allows us to have only one package of EDAP Tools which works with all supported versions of Flash on Win and Mac.

2. New commands:

  • Timeline Block To Symbol – Nest a block Timeline selection into a wrapper / container preserving relative position, layer structure and slicing neatly even in the middle of tweens.
  • Punch Current Frame – Punch a Graphic Symbol’s Timeline from the outside; exclude layers that you don’t need punched by adding suffix to their layer name.
  • Clean Up (SMR) – Automatically snap into position elements of a Smart Magnet Rig that have been ‘dislocated’ during classic tweening, fixing a ‘broken’ arc with one key press, no matter over how many frames the tween spans.
  • Frames To Movieclips – Convert any block of Timeline animation to a sequence of single frame Movie Clips so that you can apply Filters such as Blur, Glow or Color Adjustment and still keep your animation editable and exportable.
  • Effects Tween – Tween the values between two keys with Filters or Color Effects in a frame-by-frame sequence of Movie Clips created by Frames To Movieclips.

3. Added features:

  • Smart Transform lets you toggle between forward and inverse Transform points. Added Alternative Inverse mode.
  • Convert To Keyframe Advanced can now skip (exclude) layers with the suffix ‘//no key’ added to their layer name from being ‘keyed’ in all modes where keys are automatically created across multiple layers.
  • Next and Previous Frame In Symbol are now dual-function. The alternative mode allows users to ‘jump’ to next and previous Keyframes on the current layer.
  • EDAPT Settings have been redesigned and are now EDAPT Control Panel with many additional settings to adjust.
  • EDAP Tools can now be uninstalled from EDAPT Control Panel.

4. Many important bug fixes

It is highly recommended that all users upgrade to take advantage of the latest changes.

Important note on shortcuts

As EDAP Tools evolve, EDAPT Shortcuts become more closely integrated and, unfortunately, less optional than in the previous versions. Since we keep pushing the boundaries of what Flash can do, we need to rely on heavily modified shortcut set and approaches to developing that set which are not available via Flash’s native shortcuts dialog.

We strongly recommend to our users to switch to EDAPT Shortcuts to get the full EADP Tools experience!

We understand that as our set departs more and more radically from Macromedia/Adobe standard shortcuts, transition can be frustrating at first and requires a few days.
But the benefits to the user would be huge as all EDAPT shortcuts have been assigned with animation/design workflow usability in mind and as you get used to them you will realize how much time and hand movement they will save you.

If you need to modify the EDAPT set to better suit your needs, please, refer to this article.

General recommendations

  • To our users we recommend working with Flash Professional CS6 for character animation, whenever possible. It is the most rigid, stable, bug-free and best performing version to date.
  • We also have found out that if Action Script 2 is chosen in document’s Publish Settings, general performance of Flash is much better. This affects positively not only some of our tools, but the way Flash renders shapes and lines and potentially other aspects of the way it works internally.
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