Here’s a video of an app I worked on last year, but for one reason or another, forgot to actually blog about.

The Careers IT Seat Interactive is an iPad application that was developed as part of the Glasgow Science Centre’s Careers Hub exhibit. It consists of a series of games and quiz style questions designed to challenge and entertain visitors as they discover their ideal career based on their personality. The app is accessible through seven iPads mounted in seated pods at the science centre.

The application was developed using Adobe AIR and ActionScript 3. Flash Professional was used as the design tool, with a combination of bitmap and vector artwork used for the app’s visuals and animation. I always find it extremely enjoyable working on AIR projects and this one was no different. Vector graphics were actually used for the bulk of the artwork and the final result looked great on the Retina iPad Airs that were used in the actual exhibit.

  1. Did you use any framework or libraries like Starling, Greensock etc…?
    The app is really snappy! Well done.
    I’m interested in hearing a bit more on the techniques you used. Especially considering Flash was part of the mix.

  2. Hi Patrick,

    The app was built using Flash’s traditional display list so there was no need for Stage3D or libraries such as Starling. Most of the content was vector-based. Bitmaps were used only for some of the more detailed icons and for photographic-quality visuals that were used in places. The bitmaps were created at iPad Retina resolution since that was the only device being targeted for the project.

    As for animation. For the most part I used the excellent Greensock library to handle most of the animation. Where it made sense, traditional Flash timeline animation was used. There were only a few constraints I placed on the animators: avoid using masks as much as possible since masks can impact performance, and not to use filters. Other than that, the animators were free to structure their timeline animations any way they saw fit.

    We targeted 30 frames per second for the project and to be honest didn’t have any real issues trying to achieve that target. In fact, I also had a build of the app happily running at 60fps on the iPad at one point but had to revert back to 30fps since all the timeline animations had already been provided at 30fps.

    To achieve such high frame rates we opted for Adobe AIR’s GPU render mode rather than utilising the CPU renderer. Although the GPU renderer isn’t as accurate as the GPU renderer, no one was really able to see any significant difference in image quality. And of course, our choice of render mode was the reason I asked the animators not to use filters, since GPU rendering doesn’t support them.

    In most ways, the development of the app felt very familiar to any other Flash web-based project. It went very smoothly and there was no rear hurdles that we had to overcome. In fact, it was really good fun working on it.

    Hope that was of some help to you.

    Christopher (Author)