Introducing Storyboard Suite 4.1: Driven by GUI Designers – for GUI Designers

Earlier this year we announced the release of Storyboard Suite 4.0, giving embedded GUI design and development teams an easier and faster way to get their applications to market. 4.0 focused heavily on streamlining the design experience and supporting collaborative team development, with enhancements like multiple application design file support, model comparison and merge streamlining, support for 9-patch images, Lua Editor updates to increase productivity and make debugging easier, support for scrolling layers and circles and arc render extensions, and more!

When we release a new version of Storyboard Suite, we celebrate the success and innovation and get right back to making improvements and fine-tuning the user experience. Because our in-house UI & UX designers use Storyboard Suite on our own product feature demos and to create applications for customers, we find out quickly what we love and we know we could love more with a few tweaks.

Because of these tweaks and improvements, we bring you…

Storyboard Suite 4.1

Storyboard Suite 4.1 – Driven by GUI Designers, for GUI Designers

Available today, leverage the enhanced and improved capabilities we’ve brought to Storyboard Suite 4.1.

Quickly and easily edit animations

We’ve added significant enhancements to the animation timeline to make it easier to create and edit application animations, including:

  • the ability to copy and paste entire rows of animation steps
  • alignment controls on animation timeline
  • editing within the properties view
  • the ability to multi-select animation steps for quick adjustments
  • updated color coding to easily distinguish between animation elements

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Design more efficiently and intuitively

We’ve fine-tuned a number of capabilities in Storyboard Designer to increase design and development productivity, by simplifying steps and making the UI more intuitive. These changes include:

  • In the Application Model View,
    • double-clicking Lua scripts enable editing
    • the Lua Script action label now includes the Lua function name
    • double-clicking an Action allows contextual editing
  • The Properties View has been streamlined to replace expanded shelves with tabs, making it easier to see the active render extensions that are being modified
  • Enhanced Group highlighting – Groups are highlighted upon selection in the Application Model or if they are ALT-selected in the editor. The selection displays the outline of the group contents and allows for easy resizing. Groups are also shown in the wireframe and outline mode
  • Updated Photoshop file (PSD) re-import workflow – Review and accept location changes of re-imported images
  • The platform specific color selectors have been replaced with a new generic SWT based color picker, leading to a more consistent experience across platforms

To test drive Storyboard Suite 4.1, download the 30-day full featured evaluation version today.

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From FTF 2015: Storyboard Suite IoT GUI Demos at the Show

Hello from Austin!

It’s day 3 at the show and we promised some photos and an update on all things Crank Software at FTF 2015. It’s exciting to see multi-market demos for the Internet of Things in the Technology Lab developed using Storyboard Suite, some of them by us, and some by our partners. Check out the photos and video below to get a vibe for what’s going on at the show.

News coverage of the home automation IoT demo

Unfortunately, there was only time to showcase a small portion of the functionality in this coverage, but check out the Storyboard Suite designed IoT home demo at FTF 2015. It starts at 6:25, so you can just skip right to the good stuff. :)

Storyboard Suite GUI design demos in the Technology Lab

Crank Software FTF2015 booth

Crank Software demo pedestals 102 & 103 in the Technology Lab at FTF 2015

Hands-on Lab at FTF 2015 by Crank Software

Crank Software VP Jason Clarke leading a hands-on lab at FTF 2015 on Day 2. The Evolution of Embedded GUI Design: From Photoshop to Crank Storyboard Suite to i.MX Series Hardware in Minutes

Storyboard Suite audio demo at FTF 2015 in the Freescale booth

Freescale Audio Solutions booth at FTF 2015, featuring an audio application demo built with Storyboard Suite

In-car Infotainment

In-car Infotainment demo by Freescale in Freescale & Green Hills Software booths at FTF 2015

Green Hills Software Storyboard Suite Demo

Multi-market application demo designed and developed with Storyboard Suite for Green Hills Software INTEGRITY RTOS

IoT Demo Storyboard Suite FTF

Freescale’s Clark Jarvis providing a demo of the IoT home at FTF 2015

Storyboard Suite Embedded GUI Demos and Sessions at Freescale Technology Forum

Storyboard Suite GUI Design at Freescale Technology Forum

FTF (Freescale Technology Forum) 2015 is next week in Austin, Texas, June 22-25, and we are gearing up for another awesome show. We will be busy this year with presenting a lecture and running a hands-on lab, as well as demoing GUIs and Storyboard Suite at the exhibition. If you are going to the show, here’s what you can expect to see:

GUI Design Demos

Visit the Crank Software booths (102 & 103) to see a range of application GUIs built with Storyboard Suite. We will also be demoing the latest enhancements to Storyboard Suite. Make sure you stop by to get a sneak peak of our upcoming 4.1 release!

On the show floor you’ll see Storyboard Suite in a number of partner booths as well. Green Hills Software will be showcasing an automotive digital cluster built with Storyboard Suite for the INTEGRITY RTOS. In the Crank & Freescale Semiconductor booths you’ll want to check out GUI demos that span automotive, audio, and IoT (Internet of Things) applications.

Learning Opportunities – Storyboard Suite Sessions

We will be giving a 1 hour lecture at FTF, as well as teaching a hands-on lab. If you like presentations with tonnes of heavy-text slides and boring demos, you’ll want to skip our sessions. In the lecture we will be showing a quick Storyboard Suite demo, which includes deploying an application directly to i.MX hardware. You’ll get your hands dirty in the 2 hour classroom session, so bring your appetite for learning and a sense of adventure.

Lecture – The GUI of Things: Using Crank Storyboard Suite to Accelerate GUI Design for IoT Applications (FTF-DES-F1368)

When: Monday, 4:15 PM
Where: Griffin Exhibition Hall 5 – Level 2
What: In this presentation and we will share the latest features in Storyboard Suite that support ease-of-use for designers and team collaboration. We will conduct a live demo that starts in Storyboard Suite and showcases the design process from importing Photoshop .PSD files to deployment on Freescale’s high-performance and widely-used i.MX series applications processors and everything in between.

Hands-on Lab – The Evolution of Embedded GUI Design: From Photoshop to Crank Storyboard Suite to i.MX Series Hardware in Minutes (FTF-INS-F1154)

When: Tuesday, 2:30 PM
Where: Griffin Exhibition Hall 6 – Level 2
What: In this session, users will: import artwork from designers directly into Storyboard Suite; quickly add interactive functionality and rich animations; test in the simulator to quickly refine and update the design; and deploy a functioning application prototype directly to an i.MX platform. After completing this workshop, users will be able to import artwork directly from Photoshop into Storyboard Suite, develop a rich application GUI, and quickly deploy to i.MX series hardware.

We will be tweeting from the show, so be sure to follow @cranksoftware.
(FTF hastag = #ftf2015)

Storyboard Suite & the Atmel SAMA5D4: Innovation in Home Automation

Home automation provides a convenient way to control home appliances and systems. Making life easier for homeowners, it also saves energy by programming devices and systems to operate within certain requirements. Controls for home automation can be as simple as dimming lights via a remote or as feature-rich as a network of home systems programmed with a main controller or mobile device.

Smart Home GUI Design

The “Smart Home”, outfitted with cutting edge home automation technology, might be a Geek’s* paradise, but has also become more mainstream for a number of reasons.

1. Energy doesn’t come cheap

A big driver is the cost of heating and powering our homes. Energy isn’t getting any cheaper, and aiming to decrease energy consumption is a mission of the financially savvy and environmentally conscious among us. Using a home automation system to pre-program home temperatures or to set appliances to run during peak hours saves electricity. That means more money for Friday night takeout.

2. Keeping our homes – and families – safe

You weren’t expecting visitors? Check out the interface of your home automation system to see who’s knocking at your door at 11pm. Home security systems are gaining in technology prowess and complexity. Designing an intuitive interface to interact with security systems increases security and safety, and by association, peace of mind.

3. Because convenience

Smart homes lend convenience to busy households. Well-designed home automation interfaces allow homeowners to interact with and control their homes in ways that maximize convenience and savings.

The best home automation interfaces are designed with users in mind. Simplicity is key, but intuitive and easy-to-use controllers require elegant design, exhaustive testing, and multiple iterations, which can be time intensive. Designing with Storyboard Suite allows teams to keep UX and UI designers engaged in the entire development process, resulting in systems that are finely tuned and highly functional, without dragging out timelines.

A simple, easy-to-use home automation demo, built with Storyboard Suite

Check out the following home automation demo on the Atmel SAMA5D4, featuring video playback. This interactive user interface was built with Storyboard Suite to manage various aspects of a home, including lighting, heating & cooling, and home security.

*We use the word “geek” with much admiration and respect, obviously.

HMI demos and Storyboard Suite at TU-Automotive Detroit 2015

TU-Automotive Detroit is just around the corner, June 3-4 in Novi, Michigan, so we are getting the Storyboard Suite demos ready to hit the road. This is a great automotive show to check out the latest in connected car technology, autonomous driving, safety & security, mobility, and more!

Crank Software is at the Detroit Auto Show

See us at TU-Automotive Detroit, June 3-4

HMI & Storyboard Suite demos in the Crank booth, C113

Stop by the Crank Software booth (C113) to see some cool automotive HMI cluster and infotainment demos on a variety of platforms, created by our talented design team using Storyboard Suite. In addition, we will be demoing the ease of designing, developing, and deploying rich HMIs with the latest features in Storyboard, so be sure to talk to us about taking a tour of our tool suite.

Partner demos

While cruising the show floor, visit the QNX Software Systems booth, #C92, to see a digital instrument cluster developed with Storyboard Suite.
Speaking of QNX, check out a recent guest post we contributed to the QNX Auto blog, to learn more about designing automotive clusters.

Storyboard Suite Free Trial

 Previous automotive HMIs developed with Storyboard Suite

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QNX Concept Car – Bentley Center Stack created with Storyboard Suite