Questions about Rev/Transcript vs. other toolkits

Troy Rollins troy at
Thu Aug 12 02:50:17 EDT 2004

On Aug 12, 2004, at 1:57 AM, Chipp Walters wrote:

> In Director, can you composite 4 images, one on the top of each other, 
> each with a transparent alpha channel, and export the final single 
> composited image as a PNG with alpha channel intact? I know they can 
> be 'overlayed' on top of each other, but combining them into a single 
> image with the 'sum of the alphas' is quite a different thing. This is 
> not a simple image snapshot I'm talking about.

It seems that I'm being backed into a corner. OK. Here we go. Remember, 
you dragged it out of me.

Yes. Easily. With mind-blowing speed. Nothing to do with snapshots. 
Pure image compositing with alpha, additional masks, ink types, and 
much more. Oh, 4 images...? How about 40? 400? in milliseconds. Sum the 
alphas and all. It is no big thing. (Terry GetPixel and SetPixel are 
relatively slow... check out copyPixels()

> Can you edit the binary data of a single image?

Yes, you can manipulate individual pixels, with or without alpha. Far 
more easily than you can in Revolution.

>  Can you reset the dpi for an image w/out affecting the size of an 
> image?

I don't know. I've never tried.

> And, can you create a standalone application which can be launched by 
> clicking a 'document file' (not the app itself) and load the document 
> file automatically?

Yes. I do it all the time. It is not as straight-forward as Rev, but 
certainly very possible.

> Lastly, could you do all of this in 2 weeks?

Oh yes. Other than the DPI thing, I would seriously doubt it would take 
that much time, probably half that. Trust me, the image handling is 
THAT MUCH BETTER. To the point where I can't see what the big deal is. 
Compositing the images and summing the alpha? It is one line of code 
per image.

>  If so, I'm just wondering why I don't see more real 'apps' written in 
> Director? In fact, I know of no commercial apps written in Director, 
> though I can't say I've looked all that hard ;-).

Compared to the hordes written in Revolution you mean? Let's face it, 
there have been hundreds of commercial apps written in Director. 
Though, given the admitted multimedia bent to them, MOST of them are 
educational and activity CD ROMS for kids. But they are on the shelves 
of every computer store in the world as we speak. How many Rev apps 

> Granted, my last spin w/Director was quite awhile ago, but at that 
> time I wasn't sure it could do any of this. Come to think of it, 
> perhaps the 'Flash Generator' server app (is it still around?) may had 
> much of the compositing stuff in it.

Has nothing to do with Flash generator or Flash. Imaging Lingo. It is a 
complete library of extremely fast image manipulation tools which tap 
directly into low level libraries, available only in Director. Written 
for Macromedia by Werner Sharp, one of Director's pioneering authors.

> In anycase, I would say if Director can do all of this, then hurray 
> for Director:-), but it still doesn't diminish the serious imaging 
> capabilities of RR.
IMO it does. Both REALbasic and Director have MUCH better imaging 
capabilities than Rev. VASTLY. Apparently, I am the only one in the 
"conversation" with experience and familiarity (and who owns and uses 
the current version of) all three.
RPSystems, Ltd.

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