Flash on the Beach 2011, Wednesday

On Wednesday, our very own Kim Topham, Technical Consultant, was busy sitting in on the Elevator Pitches, here’s her take on the morning. Elevat…

flashonthebeach

On Wednesday, our very own Kim Topham, Technical Consultant, was busy sitting in on the Elevator Pitches, here’s her take on the morning.

Elevator Pitches:

Wednesday’s Flash on the Beach kicked off with the infamous Elevator Pitch, which for those of you who unawares, are a series of 3 minute pitches given by 20 designers and developers in the industry explaining their own innovative ideas. This was definitely one of my highlights of the day, the ideas and pitches demonstrated were not only inspirational but well translated and presented.
A handful of the rising stars included: Jason Stone’s @jason_m_stone ‘Designers Block is Bullshit’, suggesting how designers can use their own environments, particularly outside, to move beyond the creative limitations; Ward De Langhe  @delanghe gave a really interesting insight into his experimentations with Molehill AKA Stage 3D, which is the new 3D rendering API for Flash. Ward gave some exciting insights into how he was hopeful to use this for audio visuals and artwork. Neil Nand  @neilnand , one of Cogs’ own freelancers, gave a really interesting presentation on the versatility of multi sources transferable from one device onto another. Kathryn Rotondo (@krotondo) gave a fun and energetic presentation on ‘Better Code Review’ outlining every developer’s frustrations with too many meetings and how using tools and IDE plugins can assist in making a more productive experience when code reviewing. Finally, I really enjoyed Graham Odds @g_odds depiction of ditching the drawing lines and really appreciating the importance of whitespace. He successfully demonstrated how many UI designs use too much structuring and excessive line usage, which results in designs losing their emphasis and user perception; really interesting concept using the foundations of psychological principles and UI tendencies.
After this I could definitely understand why this part of FOTB had developed such notoriety – watch this space for the exciting new talent.
Keith Peters – Making Tools
www.minimalcomps.com
www.bit-101.com


Next up I saw Keith Peters, a mogul in the flash world with a number of awards and books to show for it. A really interesting and insightful presentation, Keith spends a lot of his career developing tools that assist in the development process and he talked over a number of his most useful tools. This talk straddled the divide between developers and designers and successfully outlined some excellent tools of the trade to enhance creative and technical development. Some of the most interesting ideas I took away from this were Keith’s use of tools to create pixel perfect layouts and his ideas of how tools can assist in the generation of art from code, which translates lines of codes into visual masterpieces – you should check out his websites to get a better idea of this.

Lee Brimlow – Render For Speed
www.leebrimelow.com
www.gotoandlearn.com
www.flashermag.com
@leebrimelow

My final talk of the morning was by Lee Brimelow, who discussed in full rendering methods, and touched on Android development and the very newest version of Stage3D APIs AKA ‘Molehills’. The talk aimed to outline the various means of rendering, being associated with generating an image from a model by the use of computer programming and largely being applied to 3D computer graphics. The types of methods that Lee outlined included blitting, partial blitting, dirty blitting, GPU caching, as well as the new Stage 3D APIs. I’d love to say I walked away from this discussion with complete comprehension of what was said, at times I did feel slightly out of my comfort zone in terms of understanding the principles of rendering, however I felt like I sponged up enough information to be able to get a more rounded view of how these emerging technologies and methods are going to impact on the industry, relating to both Flash and the future of HTML5.
This was the first time I had visited Flash on the Beach and overall I came away from the event with not only useful information to help me to understand more about Flash in the industry, but also a great opportunity to have exposure to some really talented individuals. Technology is such a rapidly changing entity and as a recruiter specialising in this area it is essential to keep up to date with how things are developing. FOTB was definitely an experience I would love to have again, and hopefully Cogs will be there to represent next year.

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