RealTime IT News

Macromedia Ships Director 6.5 Upgrade

Macromedia, Inc. this week announced that Director 6.5, a major upgrade to the company's Director multimedia authoring tool, is now shipping.

The upgrade significantly extends the functionality of the product and includes many new features such as QuickTime 3 support, integration with Microsoft PowerPoint, and the generation of Java applets.

Macromedia said the new features will enable developers to incorporate Apple's new QuickTime standard to create high quality digital video. Director 6.5 has the ability to import, rotate, and mask QuickTime movies, and is capable of creating composite QuickTime movies and sounds using native Director sprites--even on a Microsoft Windows machine.

The upgrade to Director has another new feature that will enable end-users to view Director productions without the need for a plug-in using Java applets. The new "Save as Java" feature enables designers to generate Web banners and games as Java applets, without the need for programming.

Director 6.5 automatically converts Director cast elements and Lingo scripts to native Java types, and minimizes the applet's size by utilizing only the code that is actually needed.

The upgrade also includes the ability to convert PowerPoint files to Director movies, a feature that allows designers to enhance their PowerPoint presentations with interactivity, transitions, and animations.

Additionally, Director generates HTML code that auto-detects the browser's capabilities, then sends Shockwave movies, Java applets, or GIF images to the client's browser.

Director 6.5 also enables developers to embed ActiveX elements such as browsers, spreadsheets, and UI widgets in Director.

The upgrade to Director 6.5 is available to current users of Director 6 for a retail price of $199. Director 4 or 5 users may upgrade to Director 6.5 Multimedia Studio for $499 or Director 6.5 for $399, while the full version of Director 6.5 Multimedia Studio sells for a retail price of $999.

For more information about Director, visit the Macromedia Web site.