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Preview: Ben Forta's Blog

Ben Forta's Blog



The web, app development, mobile, ColdFusion, gadgets, and whatever else tickles my fancy.



Published: Thu, 29 Sep 2016 00:53:42 -0400

Last Build Date: Wed, 21 Sep 2016 14:11:00 -0400

 



Update On Adobe XD For Windows

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 14:11:00 -0400

(image) Waiting for Adobe Experience Design (XD) for Windows? Yeah, me too. Andrew Shorten has just posted an update on the subject.



Adobe Spark Safe Search

Sun, 18 Sep 2016 22:33:00 -0400

(image) Adobe Spark is immensely popular among younger users, even very young users. To make Spark safer for our youngest fans we recently significantly revamped safe-search of both photos and icons. That said, no safe-search filter is truly foolproof, and so we've implemented a blacklist mechanism so that we can quickly block offensive images if they do somehow get through the filter. If you run into problematic images, please email us with the exact search term and a copy of the image.



Dreamweaver Beta 3 Now Available

Fri, 09 Sep 2016 08:00:00 -0400

(image) As I've mentioned previously, we're hard at work on a huge Dreamweaver update. Beta 3 of the new Dreamweaver is now available, complete with a significantly enhanced coder workspace.



MAX Advance Pricing Ending Soon

Mon, 05 Sep 2016 09:56:00 -0400

(image) MAX Advance registration discount pricing ends on September 16th. If you register by then you'll pay just $1395, a $200 savings on the full conference pass price of $1595. MAX 2016 will be held November 2nd - 4th, 2016 in San Diego, CA. Register now!



ColdFusion Security Update

Tue, 30 Aug 2016 18:31:00 -0400

(image) The ColdFusion team has announced a critical update to ColdFusion 10 (Update 21) and 11 (Update 10) to address a potential issue associated with parsing crafted XML entities that could lead to information disclosure. CF2016 is not vulnerable to this issue. (ColdFusion 9 and earlier may be vulnerable, but are no longer supported. If you are running an older version of Coldfusion you really need to upgrade immediately).



Spark Page Just Got Better

Sun, 21 Aug 2016 15:42:00 -0400

(image) We just updated Spark Page with two much requested enhancements:
  • Your Spark Page stories can contain links to other sites and pages. Previously links were only supported via buttons, but you can now turn any text into a link.
  • We've also significantly improved the embedding options so that Spark Pages embedded into your site or blog will look a whole lot better.



Adobe Spark In 4th Grade

Mon, 15 Aug 2016 19:42:00 -0400

Watch how a 4th-grade teacher uses Adobe Spark to keep her students engaged. width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/13GeagdhG6Q?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>



Back To School With Adobe Spark

Thu, 11 Aug 2016 13:45:00 -0400

It's Back-To-School time, and teachers all over are prepping for another year spent in the company of fresh eager (yeah, I know, but I'm trying to sound upbeat) faces. Back in prehistoric times, when I was in school, that meant sharpening lots of pencils, trying to get last year's chalk mark remnants off the board, obtaining a stack of clean projector transparencies and duplicator carbon sheets ... ouch! Teachers these days do much the same, although we've (thankfully) traded much of that ancient technology for shiny Chromebooks, iPads, and desktop computers. Over the past two school years, I've had the good fortune and privilege of meeting lots of passionate teachers the world over, and many have shared the innovative ways that they are using our FREE Adobe Spark in their classrooms. Last year I shared some of these ideas here on this blog, and that post proved so popular that I am posting an update and including additional suggestions that teachers have since shared with me.Oh, one important note. When I posted the list last year Adobe Spark only supported iPads. Now that Spark also runs on desktops and Chromebooks I've included ideas that are better suited to those devices, too. So, in the Back To School spirit, here goes: Speech and language play: Create a Spark Video story with a single picture per page, use big bold clear pictures (ideally isolated on a white or clear background to avoid distractions). Have the child go through page by page recording themselves naming the pictured object. (Note: Many teachers have asked how to create copies of blank or starter stories. You can do this by going to the Projects tab, tapping the project ... symbol, and then selecting Duplicate). Sight words proficiency: Create a Spark Video story with one sight word per page and with no recorded voice. Have the child go through page by page recording themselves reading the words. This can be repeated at intervals so that the children see the progress and improvement for themselves. Narrative prompts: Similar to the prior ideas, but pick images with an action occurring, and have the student record a single sentence describing what is happening. Rhyming game: Show a series of pictures, and have the children use Spark Video to record a word that rhymes with it (as opposed to naming the picture). Playing with shapes and colors: I've seen lots of variants of this one, all of which thoroughly engaged the students. Assign a color and/or a shape, and have the students walk around the classroom or yard or school building taking pictures of matches. They can then describing them in a Spark Video story. Second language acquisition: A variant of the above (this one shared with me by teachers teaching Chinese Mandarin and Spanish to English-speaking kids, as well as by an ESL teacher working with immigrant children) is to show pictures or words that need to be translated, having children record the translations. The same picture can be used on multiple pages so that the child records the same word multiple times, building proficiency while being able to hear the improved fluency. Story starters: Instead of assigning a topic for children to write about, assign a series of images that they must use. Allow them to create their own captions, add images, perhaps even edit the images, and build a story around them. Specify a minimum and maximum duration if using Spark Video, or a maximum length if using Spark Page, and then have the students share their work with the rest of the class. Creative storytelling: With so many children (and their families) taking pictures on smartphones and devices, the odds are high that children will have access to lots of digital pictures capturing their summer break. Spark is great for "What I did this summer" type storytelling. Having the pictures stored on the iPhone or iPad camera roll will make this project[...]



Updated Flash And AIR 23 Beta On Labs

Wed, 10 Aug 2016 11:34:00 -0400

(image) (image) Updated versions of the betas of Flash Player 23 and AIR 23, code named Underwood, have been posted to Adobe Labs.



Auto Mock-Ups Comp CC

Tue, 09 Aug 2016 23:29:00 -0400

(image) Tony Harmer has posted a video and article explaining Auto Mock-Ups which were just added to Comp CC.



Beta 2 Of New Dreamweaver

Mon, 01 Aug 2016 11:21:00 -0400

(image) The Dreamweaver team is hard at work rebuilding the venerable web design and coding tool, giving it a modern facelift and equally modern coding features. Beta 2 of the new Dreamweaver is now available, and you can learn more in this blog post.



Theme Preview Comes To Spark Video

Fri, 22 Jul 2016 06:48:00 -0400

(image) Spark Video comes with a growing library of themes which provide your videos with everything from fonts, to colors, to animations and transitions. If you wanted to know what a theme looks like you need to actually apply it, click on it to see the new colors and fonts applied, then play it to see the new animations. To make theme selection easier we just added a preview feature to the Spark Video iOS app (it'll be coming to the web version, too), just tap the theme and the theme button will animate to preview the theme.



Adobe Stock Celebrates 2,000,000 Videos

Thu, 21 Jul 2016 18:45:00 -0400

(image) Title says it all, the Adobe Stock team just announced a major milestone, their 2,000,000th video.



Monica Burns On Spark In The Classroom

Sat, 09 Jul 2016 23:05:00 -0400

(image) Noted EdTech guru, Monica Burns, (of ClassTechTips fame) has posted 5 Ways to Use Adobe Spark to Share School Stories.



Joel Aarons On Adobe Spark

Mon, 04 Jul 2016 23:09:00 -0400

(image) Joel Aarons is an Adobe Education Leader and a Media Arts teacher I met in Melbourne, Australia. He's also become a big fan of Adobe Spark and its role in the classroom, and recently wrote a really useful article on Digital Portfolios with Adobe Spark Page. Educators, this one is well worth eyeballing.