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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: Sun, 20 Aug 2017 19:11:12 -0400

Last Build Date: Thu, 10 Aug 2017 12:54:00 -0400


Adobe Spark Post Back-To-School Posts

Thu, 10 Aug 2017 12:54:00 -0400

(image) Just in time for Back-to-School, the Adobe Spark Post team has created 5 remixable posts for you to use in the classroom:

Julieanne Kost Teaches Photoshop

Thu, 10 Aug 2017 10:08:00 -0400

(image) My super-talented Adobe coworker, Julieanne Kost, has started a YouTube series teaching Photoshop skills and techniques. The videos are short, 2-5 minutes each, and are highly recommended if you are new to Photoshop.

Back To School With Adobe Spark

Tue, 08 Aug 2017 12:17:00 -0400

It's Back-To-School time, and teachers all over are prepping for another year in the classroom. 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 laptops, Chromebooks, iPads, and desktop computers. Over the past few years, I've had the good fortune and privilege of meeting thousands of passionate educators the world over, and many have shared the innovative ways that they are using our FREE Adobe Spark in their classrooms. Just as I've done the past two years, I've compiled some of my favorite teacher-shared Spark classroom ideas into this post.So, in the Back To School spirit, here are 20 teacher-provided ways to use Adobe Spark in the classroom: Welcome message: Use Spark Video to create a welcome message for students and parents. Include photos, videos, contact information, and more. Some teachers find that Spark Video is also a great way to share and explain classroom rules and policies with students (who are most likely to watch a video than listen to you talk). Classroom updates: If you share classroom news and updates with parents, replace boring emails (or printed letters!) with Spark Page stories which can contain images, videos, links, and more. Student introductions: Have your students introduce themselves to you and their classmates using Spark Video. Give them some pointers, a list of key bits of information to include, and have them create a slide for each and then narrate them. Students can also use a picture of themselves for the video title page. This is particularly effective for the quieter or shyer students who may not be comfortable speaking up in a new class, but who will enjoy creating their own video in a quiet corner. 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 describe 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 [...]

Getting Started With UX

Thu, 03 Aug 2017 14:21:00 -0400

(image) The Adobe UX team has posted a great article on Do This, Not That. UX Dos and Don'ts if You're Just Starting Out.

Joseph Labrecque On Flash And HTML5

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 14:14:00 -0400

(image) Following the recent announcement of Flash's planned end-of-life, we chatted with author and Flash-guruJoseph Labrecque about What to expect when converting Flash to HTML5.

On Flash's EOL

Tue, 25 Jul 2017 23:19:00 -0400

(image) Today we announced that we're planning to end-of-life Flash at the end of 2020. This blog post explains the how and why in detail.

Project Felix Updated

Wed, 19 Jul 2017 10:40:00 -0400

(image) Project Felix is a new Adobe application that makes it easy to composite 3-D objects using 2-D images. The goal is to open up the world of 3-D design to individuals without previous 3-D design experience, and the latest update, Project Felix 0.3, is all about efficiency and workflow improvements.

What Creative Cloud App Should I Use?

Tue, 18 Jul 2017 22:33:00 -0400

(image) Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe InDesign are very different products used for very different purposes. Right? Actually, there are definitely feature overlaps and there are projects that can be created in more than one of them. Which is why the Creative Cloud posted this great Which Product Do I Use to Create That? roundup.

Improve Your UX Vocabulary

Wed, 12 Jul 2017 13:28:00 -0400

(image) Do you think A/B testing belongs in elementary school? Don't know the difference between end users and personas? Think a fishbone diagram is culinary advice? The Adobe XD team has you covered with this handy Master Your UX Vocabulary With These 50 Must-Know Terms.

Adobe Affiliate Program MAX Pass Promotion

Mon, 10 Jul 2017 07:24:00 -0400

(image) Want to go to Adobe MAX 2017 for free? The Adobe Affiliate Program can help you and a friend get to MAX in Las Vegas. You just have to link to our products (Adobe Creative Cloud, Adobe Stock, or Adobe Document Cloud) to earn commissions on each sale. Make five sales between now and the end of July, you'll be entered into a drawing for two full conference passes to Adobe MAX 2017.

Adobe MAX Early Bird Pricing Ending Soon

Fri, 23 Jun 2017 11:34:00 -0400

(image) Adobe MAX 2017 is coming to Las Vegas, NV, this October. And you have just one more week to register at Early Bird pricing ($300 off).

Dreamweaver And Git

Tue, 13 Jun 2017 09:39:00 -0400

(image) This one has been long awaited. The newest version of Dreamweaver now supports Git. This blog post explains the integration.

On Using Hero Images

Fri, 09 Jun 2017 04:45:00 -0400

(image) A hero image, the first image that your site visitors will usually come across, is more than just a pretty picture; it's also a powerful communication tool. The Adobe XD Team has just posted some invaluable insight into how to effectively use hero images.

Adobe State Of Create Study

Tue, 23 May 2017 11:02:00 -0400

(image) The Adobe State of Create 2016 study is an important read, chock full of important data on the role of creativity in business, trends in education, global imperatives, and more. I was looking for the study today, and am posting the link so I have it on hand for future (and so that you can find it easily, too).

XD Team On Breadcrumbs

Sat, 20 May 2017 23:46:00 -0400

(image) Navigation can make or break the user experience of a site. It helps users to locate themselves on a site, and figure out how to get to where they want to go next. Breadcrumbs are a set of contextual links that function as a navigation aid for websites, and over on the XD Blog, user experience guru Nick Babich has posted a great article on the subject.