Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Flash lite development. Remember good-old-days :)

If you are known with Flash, it is simple to begin developing a Flash Lite program. The simply differences in the Flash development kit are that the document size are fixed (to, for instance, 176 x 208 pixels) and that some classes and functions in the ActionScript suggestion are special. However these sound like not big issues, in practice the effects to development are very big.
This is the first thing you can fall in to: It is cool and easy — even too simple — to make a Flash Lite program if you are familiar with Flash, as long as you make it on your computer.

The serious challenges begin when you begin testing your program on different phones with different displays, memory capacities, and CPU. Thus, rule number one is: Work hard on optimization at all times and your program will more most likely work tremendously on more phones. If you have an experience from the good-old-days of the 1980’s with C-64, Sinclair, and Atari or other computers with less than 32 kB of memory, you will feel like coming back to old home: It really makes a variation to make tight and clean code while keeping your program cool and good. For Flash Lite Player 1.1 the ideal file size is about 100 kB, but it can be also bigger. For Flash Lite 2.0 the preferred file size is about 4 times larger, about 400 kB. These principles can and will vary from phone to phone, these are just rough guidelines.