07 Apr 2005 23:01:59 Chris Charlton replied:
I think now at days, extension/component makers may feel the burn along with web-designers. If people dissect a new text-effect that's on some new movie site, it'll be done first with thought, then maybe kracked code... and hopefully then it gets expanded on since it's "leaked". We can't prevent ingenuity and enhancement.
On the web, except gaming, nothing's entriely new; everything is presentation of data. Remember, (X)HTML/XML was "flat" so here came Flash (first Shockwave but that's a whole other generation of stories). Do we oh so forget that websites are (just) interactive pamphlets of who we are, what we do, and what we're selling - perfect for portfolios, and online ordering.
How about a few scenarios of different weights:
<li><b>Beginner</b> Designer/Developer - Small sites are usually early client work or learning experience. Not really expecting a "new" factor except in design/style/execution. Medium sites are usually cool to work on since they're larger projects. Proper execution, like loading images (JPG/SWF) and text (XML/TXT) help seperate the 300K site form the 30K sites (with 300K of content). Resources at hand: Tutorials, Forums, FlashKit, and Extensions (free/buy). Highest alarm is design theft and possible concept theft. Anyone who uses stolen designs falls to their doom when asked to make drastic changes to areas they have no clue how was made.</li>
<li><b>Savvy</b> Designer/Developer or <b>Small Firm</b> - Takes usually at least a few weeks, design goes through revisions, so definitly costed time. Actionscript is used to automate certain areas, like content loading (XML,TXT, database), and some interactivity. Possible "wow"/"new" factor, a few diamond-in-the-ruffs. Alarms here are design theft, concept theft, and possibly code kracking. Experimental sites may loose in the "we only have" showoff arena, since someone kracks their SWF.</li>
<li><b>Advanced</b> Designer/Developer or <b>Firm</b> - High-Profile sites (Entertainment/Marketing/Commercial), Promo & MicroSites, Experimental sites, XML/Database Integration, and Interactivity. Takes weeks-months. Actionscript used to automate, dynamic content and interactivity, usually high design, maybe a "wow"/"new" factor. Alarms here are design/concept theft, possible code kracking, and wanna-be sites or buzz die down.</li>
So, where are you in the list?
<b>If you're in a firm and are a bean counter, then you don't have much to worry.</b> Why not worry? Well, if your clients keep coming and some work end up semi-high profile then you have the means to get Press Releases done, and get the word out in links, blogs, and word-of-marketing-mouth. People will <i>know</i> what you can do and what you've done. Copycats will be spotted a mile away. Keep pulling in your contracts and people will only copy/krack work that's released to the public and live, so you're probably already on other horizons by the time people start dissecting your hip new thing. You have a higher chance of paying dues and becoming Macromedia Partners so your creations will get you web buzz even further. Big ups to $$$!
<b>If you're a in the middle (small firm, independant)</b>, my recommendation is again: Adjust Resources & Strategy. Meaning? Are you doing too many revisions/mockups to where a stolen design will hurt you? Hope not. Are you spending too much time coding similar things again and again? Look into <i>prototypes</i> & <i>prototyping</i>, classes, and effecient Actionscript usage. Don't be hurt, you may need training and it's out there. You can be hurt if you expect a heavy return on an idea. Shoot low, party when it's high! I personally use FlashKit as a semi-final resource, and it's never been a "how to do it", it's always I find something that's basic and I recode most of it anyway and like my code in the end. Prototype resources and collection sites are all over Google, so don't say there isn't any out there.
... hope that wasn't off topic, just was long to type.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Chris Charlton <i>- DMXzone Manager</i>
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