Crank is really excited about the upcoming Storyboard Suite v1.3 release. SB v1.3 will include accelerated performance using OpenGL ES 2.0, improved usability by the updated Image Asset Manager and added GoTo functionality, and a cleaner user interface that includes the more intuitive properties view. These and the many other added and updated features will all contribute to getting your application to market quicker. If anyone is interested in living on the wild side and helping us shape Storyboard Suite v1.3 into an even more exciting development environment, click here.
Here are some of the features / updates we are working on for Storyboard Suite v1.3.
OpenGL ES 2.0
With the addition of OpenGL ES 2.0 support customers will be able to take advantage of accelerated graphics without having to write OpenGL specific code. Along with the performance gain that OpenGL ES 2.0 will bring, users will also be introduced to a new world of cool functionality such as 3D screen transitions.
For the most part collaboration is currently usually done with comparing local files or using SVN. Some customers have asked for changes to collaboration to fit into their existing environment. We have listened and added further enhancements to better facilitate Git workflows.
A large number of our customers use Photoshop as their main environment for creating UI content. We are constantly working on improvements to make it easy as possible to work with PSD files within Storyboard Designer. One new feature that should make life easier is the ability to import multiple PSD files to a GDE file. We posted a preview here.
We now have the ability to update out runtimes independently from Storyboard Designer. This will enable us to provide our customers with the latest and greatest runtime fixes/enhancements without having to wait for a Storyboard Designer update.
Image Asset Manager
We have made some presentation changes within Storyboard Designer to make better overall use of space in the tool. Now in the image view you will be able to hover over an asset to get a pop up that gives a live representation of the image. This allows you to see how large or small the actual image is.
Another change we have made is to the properties view. We have made it easier to modify the values of the properties. Previously the user needed to double click values to edit them. Now values can be edited directly.
One thing our customers will probably appreciate is the ability to create templates. If you see yourself going through the repetitive motions of creating a button with some sort of action associated with it; you can now create a template of that button. This enables you to save that control with actions for reuse later in your project.
Use the keyboard combination Ctrl-1 and to be presented with the new GoTo functionality. Type in a layer, control, function etc. name to get a list of where that name is referenced in your entire application. Very useful for finding resources or assets quickly in a large application.
We have added the ability to collect performance information from the runtime to help analyse potential issues. The log presents how long images took to load, actions took to execute etc. This feature really helps during the final test / release cycle to fine tune performance on resource constrained devices.
For resource constrained devices you only want the assets absolutely needed in your application. Using the new resource cleanup functionality enables you to analyze your application and delete any images or fonts not associated with the final release. This cuts down on not needed images taking up valuable space but also makes sure you are not including unlicensed fonts with your application.
I little while back Brian gave us an early preview of some of the 3D screen transition plugins he was working on for Storyboard 1.3. At that time they were running in the desktop simulator on his development system. Since then we’ve added the transitions to our standard Storyboard product and they can now be used across any of our target systems with 3D acceleration support.
Windows Compact 7
Crank Storyboard Suite 1.3 will have support for Windows Compact 7. Since here is no need to compile code for Storyboard applications, you simply place the new Windows Compact 7 sbengine on your target and all your existing Storyboard applications will just run on the new platform. This makes moving to / upgrading / prototyping etc. on new hardware targets with existing Storyboard applications extremely easy with Storyboard Suite.
Take an early look at Storyboard running on the beagleboard with Windows Compact 7 and OpenGL ES acceleration.
OpenGL ES 2.0
On top of support for OpenGL ES 1.x on Wince/Compact7, we’ve also been working on getting an OpenGL ES 2.0 version ready for our 1.3 release!
We recently had a new hire and what better way to get him exposed to Storyboard Designer then to assign him a demo. Our good friends at QNX provided us with some PSD files of their Medical Demo. The latest improvements to our Storyboard Designer PSD importer allowed Matt to import multiple PSD files into one Storyboard application. This new functionality enabled him to have a very simple demo up and running within minutes. After getting use to the Storyboard development environment, Matt had the demo completed displaying live data and graphs within a couple of days.
Here is video demonstrating the ease of importing multiple PSD files in one Storyboard application.
Storyboard Suite has gained global traction over the past year and to better service our customers we have been busy signing up world-class distribution partners. To date Crank has signed with SDC Systems, MPC DATA and Embedded Tools to offer outstanding service and technical support for our existing and potential Storyboard customers.
Farley Hall, London Road
Bershire, UK, RG42 4EU
Call +44 8456 588554
MPC Data offers services in software and hardware engineering from proof of concept to volume production, with a strong emphasis on embedded and real-time developments.MPC Data Limited
Trowbridge, UK, BA14 7FJ
Call +44 1225 710600
Embedded Tools delivers and supports high-quality, cutting-edge development tools and system software for software development of embedded real-time systems.Embedded Tools GmbH
Call +49 251 98729-0