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|Thurs, February 14, 2013 at 9:50 PM|brooke valentine
, dont wanna be in love
, nex radio
|Wed, January 12, 2011 at 9:53 PM|
|Mon, December 13, 2010 at 3:19 PM|Send Blog · Share on Facebook · Bookmark on Delicious
by Dwayne Ferguson
The iPad has become a tremendous treasure trove of comic books and interactive books for children. It has become a great equalizer, bringing name brands such as Dr. Seuss, Marvel, DC, classic titles from days of old, and new publishers to a new audience.
I've been in the publishing industry since the early 1980's and the iPad is the dream device I've been waiting for. Steve Jobs said 'it's magical' and I totally agree. So it was with great joy that I went to work, bringing my previously published works, as well as new characters, to the iPad.
I'd like to share how I brought two of my iPad books from concept to finished product. I'll start with the cute one first, then the super spy one. "Dash & Everest: a Very Kitten Christmas" was brought to life using old-fashioned sketches, 3D software, and the Corona SDK.
When I first started this project, the idea was to draw the art, scan the pages into my Mac and then color everything in either Photoshop or Illustrator. But I typically will also experiment with other ideas and built a 3D model of Everest (my actual cat, and yes, I also really have a cat named Dash too!) in Lightwave 3D. The model really brought a big smile to my face and I knew which way to go. I'd do the entire book in 3D.
Fortunately I've had the pleasure of working on many children's books over the years, from Ghostbusters to California Raisins, to Power Rangers, so I was able to apply those sensibilities to the character designs for Dash, Everest and their environment. Instead of focusing on hyperrealism, I decided to go the cute and cuddly route. I applied this art direction to the color schemes and texturing as well. Simple, colorful and fun.
The story was fun to write and I made sure to tell a delightful tale, while not talking down to children. This is something I learned when I worked at Marvel comics. Never be afraid to write for children; realize that they are smarter than we all think.
Now that the artwork was done, it was time to think about how I'd get it onto the iPad. I dabbled in trying to teach myself Objective-C and, after many migraines and crying, I searched for another solution. In the past, I used to develop interactive games in both Flash and Director, but Action Script created massive app files and crashed my iPad whenever I tested the them.
I searched many game development forums, learned about ePub and how to make those, but it wasn't until I discovered the development platform called Corona that I knew I found the answer I had been searching for. Corona runs code lightning fast on my iPad and it's desktop simulator makes rapid development intuitive.
Another thing that came in handy is being able to combine my own programming with the huge library of code on the Corona website. You don't have to know every single piece of code and by doing a search, can find that one line that helps you finish your project.
Now I'll switch gears and discuss my comic book, Black Zero: Mercenary Ant. Unlike Dash & Everest, Black Zero is a secret agent, who travels the globe to do what spies do. Instead of bright and cheery, this series is more James Bond, starring an ant who wakes on the the wrong side of the bed every morning.
After drawing several sketches I settled on one with Zero armed to the teeth. I typically like to go too far, and then scale back. I also took some quality time to design weapons, gadgets, set locations, etc. I used the experience learned from art directing the animated television series Mutant League and applied it to the comic book: dark, moody, but still fun.
I modeled the characters in Lightwave and built shaders that would make everything look like they were hand drawn in the anime style. This technique, called cel shading, is very popular and lends itself very well toward digital comics.
The distinct advantage to using 3D models for comics is simple: you never need to draw that character or building again. You just need to p
|Mon, November 29, 2010 at 2:53 PM|Send Blog · Share on Facebook · Bookmark on Delicious
Now downloaded at a rate of 200,000 apps per month!
(PRWEB) November 29, 2010
As they celebrate 2 million downloads, Musicsoft Arts, the creators of DJ Mixer, have released an updated version of the top 10 iPad music app. Packed with a host of new features, DJ Mixer is quite possibly the most true-to-life virtual music app on the market.
While the current version of the app makes for an unarguably remarkable experience, transporting the user into a virtual world with all of the same 2-turntable vibe you’d get in a real DJ booth, the updated version sends it into the stratosphere featuring a full analog interface and real-time scratching.
DJ Mixer is the first iPad app to offer direct import of tracks directly from the device, enabled by the brand new iPad iOS 4.2. DJ Mixer makes mixing and playing music for friends easy, fun and affordable – packing almost $2,000 worth of hardware and software into a $9.99 iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch app.
DJ Mixer, with its astounding capabilities, is the brainchild of Musicsoft Arts, a New York City based company dedicated to building great mobile music apps.
Founded by Aviv Eyal, a serial entrepreneur who has been building Internet media companies in Silicon Valley and New York City for the past 10 years and Dan Yashiv, a true music industry maverick and music maker who has clocked 15 years experience as a record producer and engineer for Britney Spears, Natalie Imbruglia, De La Soul, DJ Spooky and more, Musicsoft Arts has established itself, in less than one year, as a leader in the rapidly growing mobile music apps market by landing three apps in the top 20 music category of Apple’s app store.
Eyal, addressing the impetus to create DJ Mixer says, "I wanted to build something that makes it easy, affordable and fun for music fans with iPod Touches, iPhones or iPads to play great sounding music to friends. With DJ Mixer, anyone can be a DJ.” Prior to co-founding Musicsoft Arts with Yashiv, Eyal co-founded and sold Grouper Networks / Crackle.com to Sony in 2006 for $65M, serving as VP, Technology for Sony post acquisition. The duo have palpably succeeded in creating an app that allows practically anyone to be a mixologist extraordinaire.
Not only is DJ Mixer considered the leading next generation music player, it hints at a new avenue for the technologically challenged record industry to introduce music to the masses. Indeed, free promo songs offered by DJ Mixer were downloaded more than 3 million times in less than a year. What’s more, DJ Mixer users can now access all the music they own either on their devices or the computers, as a premium feature.
DJ Mixer technology has recently been used in apps for notable mixologist DJ Spooky, who has enthusiastically proclaimed the application “the party’s in your pocket!” and for Hennessey Artistry Music Mixer featuring free tracks from such hip-hop and R&B luminaries as Albe Back featuring DMC, Ryan Perfect, Gilbere Forte and more.
As DJ Mixer continues to reign as a top iPhone and iPad music mixing app, the creators have listened to user feedback and built several enhancements. The newly released DJ Mixer 3 includes exciting new features such as two turntables or CD players; scratching; direct touch screen music control; and more. DJ Mixer 3 includes a revolutionary new, patent-pending feature that allows anyone to DJ with any type of headphone using a WiFi network and two “iDevices.”
CNET’s Digital Noise calls it a “Fantastic DJ app” and says, “Amateurs will love the sync button: as you’re playing one track, the sync button will adj
|Fri, February 05, 2010 at 9:00 PM|Send Blog · Share on Facebook · Bookmark on Delicious
Apple CEO Steve Jobs holds up the iPad
Not long ago, I was sifting through a box of old effects from my college days when I came across my trusty old Sony Discman. It triggered a flashback to the late 1990s when I would cart around something of a "man-purse" full of CDs - jewel cases included -for my bus ride to work on the east side of Detroit.
Back then I used my Uncle Vincent's disc player, which weighed about as much as a brick and would skip if you breathed on it too hard. I did the portable CD thing for a good seven-plus years after that…while studying, exercising and even engaging in the precarious (and potentially fatal) act of switching out discs while riding a bicycle on a busy city street.
Mr. Steven P. Jobs changed all of that for me. I resisted the iPod for years - "I have a perfectly good portable CD player that fits right in my pocket!" I thought - but those damn ubiquitous ads of the shadow character rocking out with earbuds made me cave in. The iPod changed my entire approach of listening to music on the go: with thousands of songs available at the switch of a thumb, no longer did I have to walk about looking like a herb with jean pockets crammed with jewel cases.
While the iPod lured me in the building, the iPhone and its raw sexiness just beat me over the head, assuring that I'd never step out of smartphone territory ever again. I've no choice but to concede to Jobs, whose awesome products and inimitable marketing genius has kept me standing in more than one line to get the newest hot sh!t from Apple.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs holds up the iPad and, inset, some examples of web content that won't work on the iPad and iPhone. Photo: AFP
With all the hoopla surrounding Apple's January 28 reveal of its new iPad tablet computer, I half-expected an object that would type my papers and columns by simply scanning my eyeballs while simultaneously providing me with a Shiatsu massage. At the very least, I was hoping to get a device that would help influence my as-of-late musings on moving from PCs to Macs.
Instead, we get...an iTouch on Creatine. Sure it's sexy and sleek - that's Apple's modus operandi. But the practicality and overall usefulness of the device starts and ends in the same gutter.
The most obvious and egregious issue with the iPad is that it doesn't allow multitasking. Something as simple as browsing the net with my AOL Instant Messenger (yes, I still use it) window active in the corner is not an option. Typing this column while stalking people on Facebook will not be possible on the iPad. The omission of this basal aspect of any regular computer alone makes this thing entirely unattractive to me.
Speaking of typing, as a writer, I want a device that will allow me to type as feverishly as I need to. The iPad will have Microsoft Word compatibility and software that will apparently accomplish business-related tasks, but no one is expecting to accomplish a damn thing of substance plucking away on a touch screen with the machine straight out the box -- you'll need to purchase a separate dock and keyboard.
Of course, there's also Apple's notorious, long-standing battle with Adobe Flash. Any iPhone and iTouch owner knows the frustration of essentially having access to the entire internet in their hands - only not to be able to view many sites as they were meant to be viewed. I've accepted this with my own iPhone, but it's purely unacceptable in a device that's supposed to be th