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New Quick Start Options in Flash Pro CS5

AdobeR FlashR Pro CS5 is bigger and better. By bigger, I mean that it takes longer to install and longer to open. But the wait is worth it. For those new to Flash, the software can be purchased individually or as part of one of Adobe's Creative SuitesR. If you will be using Flash CatalystTM and Flash BuilderTM along with Flash Pro, you might want to consider one of the Creative Suites. The Design Premium and Production Premium suites have Flash Catalyst CS5. The Master Collection and Web Premium suites contain Flash Catalyst CS5 and Flash Builder CS5. All of the Suites have Flash Pro CS5. Here you will find a comparison chart for the four Creative Suites.

Now let's take look at what's new in Flash Pro CS5.

The Welcome Screen wasn't changed much but has some new options. First, we have several new template options under the Create From Template menu for this new version of Flash Pro. These prebuilt templates give you a quick start on your projects. In CS4 we had the Advertising templates and these are still there. However in CS5, we also have five new categories including Animation, Banners, Media Playback, Presentations and Sample Files. Besides a quick start, these templates are a great learning resource that you can tear apart and examine. They come with instructions to do just that.

For example, in the new Animation template folder, you will find the Scripted Rain and Scripted Snow particle animations, three types of easing, several animated buttons, shape and motion mask tweens and random ease and movement templates. In the Media Playback folder you will see several playback templates including a photo album, HDTV, NTSC and PAL. Some of the Sample Files templates include an AIR window, alpha mask, custom mouse cursor, date countdown, drag and drop, IK stick man walk cycle, handwriting, lip sync, menu, panning, zoom, toggle button and preloaders. I especially liked the walk animation. I plan to get a lot of use out of that walk cycle.

In the Create New document menu, we have some new options including the ActionScript 3 Class and Interface options for creating your own custom classes and interfaces. We also have a new Learn menu that contains quick links to the online documentation for CS5. The links point to the basics such as symbols, timeline animation, ActionScript and Adobe TV.

Next, we will take a look at the workspace.

*Adobe provided a review copy to me free of charge.

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