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Media Lab to Release Automated Graphic, Design Package

Media Lab Inc. Monday unveiled PhotoWebber, a graphic and design software package that aims to simplify the process of converting a layered Photoshop file into individual graphics files and HTML code.

The product is expected to be available later this quarter.

"PhotoWebber lets Web designers focus on creative work and avoid the drudgery of building Web sites," said Chris Perkins, CEO of Media Lab, in a statement released by the company.

PhotoWebber seeks to solve the dilemma often encountered by designers when they transfer a Photoshop file to the Internet and lose much of their changes in the conversion process.

The product automatically converts layered Photoshop files into a folder of graphics files in .gif, .jpg or .png format along with the HTML code to display them. By doing it this way, files maintain the integrity of the original Photoshop design without losing any information.

Key features in PhotoWebber will include:
  • Automatic calculation of layer compositing and anti-aliasing
  • Capability to switch between table (HTML) and style sheet (DHTML) output at any time
  • Support for drag-and-drop frame creation
  • Automatic creation of interactive buttons
  • Automatic JavaScript button rollovers and pop-ups
  • Capability to convert solid background layers to Web page background colors
  • PhotoWebber also has a feature that spots and logs incompatibilities with different Web browsers, then takes the added step of offering suggestions for the best fix. The Interactive Warnings Window allows the user to make changes and adds them to a list of errors and suggested fixes.

    PhotoWebber is compatible with any graphics program that can save files in layered Photoshop format. Applications on the market that support this format include Photoshop 3 or later including LE, Corel Photo-Paint, Jasc Paint Shop Pro, and MetaCreations Painter.

    Web pages produced by PhotoWebber can be edited with any HTML editor, such as Macromedia Dreamweaver, Adobe GoLive, BBEdit, or Microsoft FrontPage.

    To run on a PC, PhotoWebber requires Windows 95/98 or NT/2000, a Pentium or higher processor, 32 MB RAM, and 30 MB free hard disk space. On a Macintosh, PhotoWebber requires System 7.6.1 or higher, a Power PC or higher processor, 32 MB RAM, and 30 MB free hard disk space.

    Java is included with the install package for both platforms and must be running on the user's system in order to run PhotoWebber.

    PhotoWebber is scheduled for availability in later this quarter. A downloadable version will retail for $199. The product is available on CD-ROM for $249 plus shipping. A downloadable, trial version will be available on the Web site when the product ships.