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Macromedia Studio 8 - An Overview

Introducing Studio 8

Since the introduction of Macromedia Studio in 2001, websites and applications have grown continuously in sophistication and importance, from communicating corporate brands to delivering mission-critical data and transactions. Technical, communication, and marketing requirements for websites are now coupled with support for industry standards and best practices. Studio continues its strong market adoption because it provides best-in-class tools for creative professionals to focus more effectively on great design and development.

Studio 8 includes the latest release of Dreamweaver, Flash Professional, Fireworks, Contribute, and FlashPaper, and offers web designers and developers a new level of expressiveness, efficiency, and simplified workflow. This release of Studio has significant new creative tools that will define the future of interactive experiences. Websites, web applications, games, presentations, and mobile content will reach a new level of design and development sophistication with the advanced graphics, text, animation, video, and audio tools of Studio 8.

With new levels of efficiency and simplified workflow, Studio speeds the design, development, and maintenance process with key features like batch optimization of creative assets, batch encoding of digital video, performance enhancements for faster project development, and increased integration with third-party products. With the introduction of Contribute into Studio, developers can now easily set up and administer sites to allow nontechnical contributors to update their own content while still maintaining site integrity.

New video encoding capabilities in Studio 8 broaden appeal to the community of video professionals looking to capture, edit, and publish video online. Additional drag-and-drop tools and starter templates make Studio 8 more approachable than ever to traditional graphic artists looking to enhance their print design skills with digital media experience.

Web content and applications built with Studio 8 will deliver consistent experiences with the greatest reach across the widest range of browsers and server technologies. Studio 8 leverages the new Flash Player 8 and prior versions, which, to date, are installed on over 98% of the world's Internet-connected computers. Customers can take their digital experience further, using Studio 8 to create content for millions of mobile handheld devices and phones.

With millions of professionals using Macromedia tools today, Studio 8 remains the leading integrated suite of professional tools for designing, developing, and maintaining effective websites, applications, interactive presentations, and mobile content. Macromedia Studio 8 includes the latest release of the following products:

  • Dreamweaver 8
  • Flash Professional 8 (including new Flash 8 Video Encoder)
  • Fireworks 8
  • Contribute 3
  • FlashPaper 2
You may notice that Freehand is no longer included. With this release, Freehand will be sold as a separate package.

Studio 8 - Overview
Studio 8 is the essential software suite used to design, develop, and maintain interactive online experiences. Combining the latest release of Dreamweaver, Flash Professional, Fireworks, Contribute, and FlashPaper, Studio 8 offers web designers and developers a new level of expressiveness, efficiency, and simplified workflow to create websites, interactive experiences, and mobile content.

  • Essential. Studio 8 is the must-have suite to create websites, web applications, interactive presentations, or mobile content. Use Flash Professional to author rich interactive content. Dreamweaver delivers clean, standards-based sites and applications. Fireworks provides optimization tools to balance quality images with compression. Contribute makes managing web content a shared team task, and the one-click process in FlashPaper can convert any printable document into a SWF or PDF file for the web.
  • Expressive. Studio 8 offers the broadest range of creative tools for expressiveness and creation of vibrant interactive media, websites, or applications. Use advanced graphics, text, animation, video, and audio tools with precision control and quality. From simple animated graphics to sophisticated interactive experiences, Studio 8 provides a full suite of tools for limitless creativity.
  • Efficient. Studio 8 speeds the design, development, and maintenance process, with reliable round-tripping between Macromedia products, integration with third-party products, and key features like batch rendering, batch encoding, and general performance enhancements to get projects done faster.
  • Multi-Platform. Support for Windows and Mac OS X enables Studio to deliver projects on the platform of choice. Extend the reach of content created with Studio by leveraging the Flash Player, installed on over 98% of Internet-connected computers. Take online experience further, and use Studio tools to create content for millions of mobile handheld devices and phones.
Studio 8 offers tremendous value and benefit to design, develop, and maintain using development tools with similar interfaces and time-saving round-trip media integration. With five products in one suite, Studio 8 offers rich functionality and cross-product workflows to create, code, and collaborate quickly.

So What's New?
Design. Develop. And now maintain.
Studio 8 has new members in the suite: Contribute 3 and FlashPaper 2. FlashPaper 2 enables customers to further the content creation process by converting any file type into web-ready PDF or SWF file format. Contribute 3 supports web professionals by enabling them to define and share templates with team members who add or update web content - but in a controlled and managed workflow to preserve website integrity.

Latest versions of the industry standard tools for web professionals

  • Flash Professional 8 - the most significant release since the introduction of Flash
    - Custom easing for advanced animation
    - Improved text tool and new text rendering engine
    - Graphic filters like blur, drop shadow, bevel, and glow
    Dreamweaver 8 - tackle new and familiar technologies with greater ease
  • Integrate XML-based data with a powerful, visual, drag-and-drop workflow
  • Zoom and guides improve the accuracy between design comps and finished product

More Stories By Charles E. Brown

Charles E. Brown is the former editor-in-chief of MX Developer's Journal. He is the author of Fireworks MX from Zero to Hero and Beginning Dreamweaver MX. He also contributed to The Macromedia Studio MX Bible. Charles is a senior trainer for FMC on the MX product family.

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