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Best Practices for Porting Flash Animation to Mobile Phones with Flash Lite

Best Practices for Porting Flash Animation to Mobile Phones with Flash Lite

Last November I attended the Macromedia MAX conference in New Orleans, and when I arrived back home, I was all pumped up. I had just learned a whole lot about the progress Macromedia has made in integrating Flash technology in mobile devices to bring to mobile users rich and engaging experiences as memorable and personalized as the experiences we get from our browsers. For the first time, I saw some really impressive content on mobile phones that made the phones look even cooler. At the conference, Macromedia also announced the first Flash Lite Content Contest.

On the way back home I started thinking about how we at Smashing Ideas could win in this contest. Back in the office, we decided to get a couple of mobile phones and create content for two contest entries: games and animation. For the animation category, we decided to put one of our favorite animations, “2001,” on the phone. “2001” is a two-minute-long animation that features our mascot robot in a challenge to buy a bag of candy from a really tall vending machine. To view the “2001” animation, click the phone key pad just below the Start text on the LCD screen.

At the time, we were no strangers to devices; we already had experience creating content for the Pocket PC platform, and we were familiar with the Flash 4 ActionScript syntax, which is supported by Flash Lite. However, little did we know how small our world had just become. In this article, I’m sharing the lessons we had to learn to get our “2001” animation to work on a mobile phone (and actually win the best animation category). The tips and tricks mentioned in this article also apply to creating new games and applications for mobile devices in general.