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Adobe Adobe Photoshop Flash Professional Lightroom CS6 4

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Supplement Contents

Managing Digital Assets

Designing Rich Media Content .. .. .. .. 4 Copyrighting Your Flash Professional Digital Assets (SWFs, Images, Video, and Sound) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 6

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Managing Digital Assets

Designing Rich Media Content


Generally, when designing rich media content for the Web, you want to take a number of factors into consideration. With the Flash platform expanding from desktop to mobile and the digital living room, this sort of planning and analysis becomes crucial.
There are a number of factors to consider, including screen resolution, screen PPI (pixels per inch), the device CPU/GPU, download speed, browser type, whether the display is touch- or pointer-based, and what sort of bandwidth the device may have. The safest way to clarify these factors is to poll your potential users; find out which devices your application will be used on and take that as a starting point. You can also run SWF files in Flash Lite on mobile phones. In this case, you should consider adding metadata to the SWF file to provide additional information the user. Metadata may include information such as the SWFs author, copyright information, a description of the SWF with keywords, and a title. You can also create custom metadata fields.

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Initial Considerations
You will need to effectively identify criteria for deciding if content should be delivered using rich media. Such criteria often include:

Effective methods for including audio and video Showing continuity and transitions Indicating multiple levels of information in transitions Illustrating change over time Getting layers of information from one area of the screen Enriching graphical representations Visualizing three-dimensional structures Attracting attention Cross-platform issues Creating interaction

You will want to be sure to conceive and execute an effective project plan for any project that you undertake. Phases to include within such a project plan most often will include planning, analysis, designing, building, testing, and implementation or launching. Deliverables that may be required over the course of the project include specifications, storyboards, comps or sketches, flowcharts, site maps, prototypes, Flash files, and HTML files.

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Project Management Issues


From inception to the finished product, you will invariably encounter issues that at best result in rescheduling tasks, and at worst result in delaying the projects release date. One of the most common occurrences is known as scope creep. This occurs when the project seems to take on a life of its own and requirements grow exponentially over time. Another common issue that often goes hand-in-hand with scope creep is the methodology chosen during the design and development phase. For example, if midway through a project, someone discovers that a new brand is in the works, much of the code base might need to be refactored for reusability as well as for code maintenance. Clearly, discussing what techniques to avoid during coding, database access, and so forth would be beneficial in the planning stage to identify which architectural processes to avoid. Project requirements that can affect the accessibility of rich media content can include:

Text equivalents for graphic elements Allowing users to control the reading order of Flash content Captioning audio content Making looping elements inaccessible Allowing users to control motion Ensuring keyboard access to all controls Exposing the structure of complex Flash movies Exposing the current state of controls Using color wisely Validating for accessibility The use of tabbing

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The Importance of Consistency


Consistency also plays a major part in a good user experience. When designing rich media content layout, you should take into consideration the type of navigation system and the placement of buttons and other controls such as menus. Also pay attention to the colors and be sure that they provide a visual message of consistency no matter where the user is in the application. With Flash, you have an enormous amount of freedom in the creation of navigation and other elements, but a user will expect these to behave in a certain way and remain consistent throughout the application. Breaking this consistency for any reason could have disastrous effects on the user experience. Consistency also assists with accessibility. Additional specific techniques used to make rich media content accessible to viewers with visual, auditory, and motor impairments include labeling images, links, and buttons; the use or nonuse of colors; placement of navigation scheme; tabbing schemes for mouse-free navigation; and the inclusion of keyboard shortcuts. Also worth considering are those items that can be used to transmit information to screen readers, including dynamic text, movie clips and their child objects, input text fields, buttons, and even entire Flash applications. Additionally, you should consider the use of audio playback over text, and even captioning for video playback.

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Graphic Design Principles


When getting started with rich media design, it will be helpful to learn some basic graphic design concepts and principles. Terms you will want to familiarize yourself with include emphasis, movement, balance, unity, symmetry, color, white space, alignment, line, contrast, rule of thirds, and proximity. It is also helpful to understand what may violate these principles, such as overcrowded layouts, extraneous graphics, and distracting colors. Here are a few design principles that should always be taken into consideration:

Horizontal Symmetry is used to describe a figure that is symmetrical after being reflected over a horizontal line. Vertical Symmetry is used to describe a figure that is symmetrical after being reflected over a vertical line. Diagonal Symmetry divides a figure in two from corner to corner. Radial Symmetry is used to describe a figure that is arranged symmetrically around a central point. Asymmetric Layout is a design that has no identifiable symmetry.

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Communication Through Storyboards


Storyboards are a mechanism that can be used to convey information about elements such as animations, transitions, sequencing and timing, navigation, images, text, audio, placement of elements on the Stage, buttons, interactions, and link information. Storyboards are not only useful for demonstrating complex ideas to clients in a visual way, but are also good for keeping everyone on the team in sync with what needs to be done and how it is to be accomplished.

Basics of Usability Testing


A common practice in verifying or determining the level of usability for an application is to conduct usability tests. These can be done with subjects gathered from a variety of places, including volunteers, paid testers, or even users from within an organization. The basics of a usability test involve observation of the users actions followed by a scripted interview. Usability tests can be conducted at any time during the application development process and the data gathered during these tests is almost always beneficial when meeting with internal teams or even with clients. Usability tests can even be performed on functional wireframes in order to gather feedback on design and content plans early in the process.

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Audience Considerations
Who is your audience? Always keep in mind that your products may be used for a wide audience. Dont assume a common cultural background, social class, education, or native language. Therefore, you should analyze the target audience and define their gender, age, ethnic background, education, buying behavior, and personal preferences. Find out what magazines your target audience reads and what TV shows it watches. Your design should not only look good, it should also match the target audience as closely as possible in terms of layout, color scheme, fonts, visual language, and interactivity. How computer savvy is your audience? Are there any statistics that reveal information about their systems? Mac or PC? Monitor resolution? JavaScript-enabled? If your work is meant for the international market, you may have additional challenges if you dont plan for these cultural differences in advance. This is a prerequisite for successful and efficient communication.

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Copyrighting Your Flash Professional Digital Assets (SWFs, Images, Video, and Sound)
Copyright is the exclusive legal right, granted to you by law (Title 17, U.S. Code), to control the reproduction, distribution, public display, intellectual property, and derivative use of your original works of authorship, and to sue for unauthorized use (infringement) of your work.
Copyright literally means the right to copy. This right begins the moment your original work is created in a fixed, tangible form. In other words, you automatically own the copyright to your creative works. Copyright protection is available for both published and unpublished works. Copyrightable works include anything that fits into one of these categories:

Literary works (including computer programs) Musical works (including any accompanying words) Dramatic works (including any accompanying music) Pantomimes and choreographic works Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works Motion pictures and other audiovisual works Sound recordings Architectural works

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Although many things are copyrightable, some are not. To be copyrightable, the work must be original. Originality is essential to copyright. For example, if you copy a photograph, that copy cannot be copyrighted since it is not original. In fact, you would need the original photographers permission to copy that image. The following types of works are not copyrightable:

Ideas and concepts. Only the original expression of those ideas and concepts in some tangible form, like a photograph, can be copyrighted. You might have an idea for a great photograph, but that idea cannot be copyrighted. Procedures, methods, systems, principles, discoveries, or devices. However, written or recorded descriptions and explanations, or illustrations of these, are protected by copyright. Works that have not been fixed in a tangible form, such as speeches or performances that have not been written or recorded. Works consisting entirely of information that is common property and containing no original authorship, such as familiar symbols and designs. Titles, names, short phrases, and slogans.

However, some titles and words might be protected under trademark law if their use is associated with a particular product or service.

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How to Obtain a Copyright


The way in which you obtain copyright protection is often misunderstood. It is important to understand that no publication, registration, or other action in the U.S. Copyright Office is required to secure a copyright. Copyright is automatically secured the moment the work is created for the first time. However, copyrights can be formally registered with the U.S. Copyright Office in Washington, DC. (http://www. copyright.gov), and there are fees involved. Even though registration is not a requirement for protection, it does establish a public record of the copyright and is required before an infringement lawsuit can be filed. You should always seek legal advice from a qualified attorney before threatening any legal action related to copyright infringement.

Notice of Copyright
A copyright notice informs the public that your work is protected by copyright. It identifies who owns the copyright and shows the year of first publication. It is a way of saying, This is my work. If you want to use it, first ask my permission. A notice reinforces the asset value of your work and alerts everyone that you are prepared to protect that value. Under U.S. law, you are no longer required to use a copyright notice. This requirement was eliminated when the United States adhered to the Berne Convention. However, the use of notice is still required for works distributed before March 1, 1989. The use of a copyright notice is your responsibility. You are not required to obtain permission from, or register with, the U.S. Copyright Office.

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On photographs and other types of visually perceptible copies, the copyright notice consists of the symbol , followed by the year of first publication of the work and the name of the copyright owner. Example: 2012 John Doe The word Copyright or the abbreviation Copr. may be used instead of the symbol. Either form is recognized, but use of the symbol may provide additional international protection. The words All rights reserved also provide further international protection.

Duration of the Rights


Under current law, the copyright term for works created by individuals is the life of the author plus 70 years after the authors death. The copyright term for works made for hire is 95 years from publication, or 120 years from the date of creation, whichever expires first. Works made for hire are works created by employees for employers and certain types of specially commissioned works.

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Fair Use Doctrine


Any time you make an unauthorized copy of a copyrighted work or create derivative works based on that work, you are technically violating or infringing on the rights of the copyright owner. However, the law does permit some limited copying of copyrighted works as a fair use of the works. So when does copying become fair use? Reproduction of a copyrighted work for purposes such as criticism, commentary, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research is generally not an infringement of copyright. The fair use exemption of U.S. copyright law was created to enable educators, researchers, and journalists to reuse copyrighted works without having to ask the author for permission, since usually these areas of application do not impinge on the commercial value of the work. There are four factors that you need to consider when determining whether the use of someones copyrighted material is a fair use of their work:

The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes The nature of the copyrighted work The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole The effect of its use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work

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The distinction between fair use and copyright infringement is not easily defined. For each situation, all four factors must be weighed by the courts to determine whether or not a work qualifies for fair use protection. In other words, there is no definitive yes or no to fair use. There is no absolute method of assessing whether or not a use is fair until after a judicial ruling in an infringement suit. The safest way to avoid copyright infringement is to always obtain permission from the copyright owner before using their copyrighted material. Simply acknowledging the source of the copyrighted material does not substitute for obtaining permission.

Images on the Internet


Image theft on the Internet is a growing and unsolvable problem, but there are ways to protect your images on the Web. The best security is to apply a watermark across your image, which shows where it came from in case of image theft. But of course this mars the attractive appearance of your images. One alternative is to include the images in a SWF (Flash) movie. This prevents them from being downloaded directly. However, keep in mind that even this method will never fully protect your images. As soon as your images are published on the Internet, you can be sure that there is a possibility they will be used elsewhere. For instance, someone can take a screenshot of the SWF movie and continue using your image. (There is also software available that can break into a SWF file and access

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its assets, including photographic images, animation, components, text, and original artwork. This software is not 100% effective in reverseengineering a SWF file, but in most cases it can successfully obtain most of the assets. The only way to protect a valuable image completely is to not publish it online.)

Audio and Video Files


When media files such as audio and video are played over the Internet, they are normally delivered via a process known as progressive download. With this process, the media file is actually downloaded onto the users computer, normally into the web browsers cache. A savvy user can easily discover the location of these sound and video files and copy them from the cache into a more accessible directory. A malicious user may even go so far as to distribute these files without the copyright holders permission. The preferable way of playing back audio and video files over the Internet is to stream the media using a dedicated streaming server (such as Adobe Flash Media Server). Streaming does not download the entire file to the users hard drive but rather sends small pieces of the file in a stream which is viewed and then immediately disposed of. There is no local cached copy of the file for the user to access. Furthermore, extra protection can be put into place through the encryption of the media stream or the application of DRM (Digital Rights Management) solutions through solutions like Adobe Access.

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Notice
U.S. copyright law is ever-changing. Every effort has been made to make this information as current as possible, but it is not intended to be used as a legal reference.

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