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Thread: Request For Proposal: FlashMX Rich Text Editor

  1. #1
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    Request For Proposal for Flash6 WYSIWYG Rich Text Editor

    Requirements:
    We are seeking a true WYSIWYG HTML editor that runs in the Flash6 player. The editor must support HTML 4.01 tags and accurately represent them according to the W3C standards for the HTML 4.01 specification. The editor must be delivered as a FlashMX “Component” that is configureable via parameters that customize its function to specific tasks, size dimensions, presentation skins, toolbar functions and features. More information will be given to interested respondents.

    Note: It is understood that the Flash6 player is currently limited to HTML 1.0 presentation natively. This proposal will require creative use of actionscript’s drawing API, native XML tree parsing, etc. to overcome this limitation for all practical purposes. The assumption is that the tables, divs, images etc, that may be presented to the user for editing are being rendered using low level actionscript coding of objects and graphic proxies that “represent” their HTML counterparts. How this is done is left as an exercise to the developer.

    The desired editor should have the following interface buttons and support the related functionality associated with each:

    B – Bold text
    U – Underline text
    I – Italicize text
    * - Left Align
    * - Center Align
    * - Right Align
    * - Create Ordered List
    * - Create Unordered List (Bullets)
    * - Left Indent
    * - Right Indent
    * - Insert Horizontal Rule
    * - Insert Hyperlink
    * - Insert Anchor
    * - Insert Table
    * - Insert Image
    * - Insert Div
    * - Insert Span
    * - Cut
    * - Copy
    * - Paste
    * - Undo (must support atleast 10 levels)
    * - Redo (must support atleast 10 levels)
    * - Format Text Font Family
    * - Format Text Size
    * - Apply CSS Class
    * - Apply CSS Style

    * - Apply Paragraph Formatting - normal, preformatted, Bulleted List, Numbered List, H1-H6

    * - Apply Hexadecimal Color – must be a draggable palette consisting of both web safe palette and RGB color spectrum options.

    * Context Sensitive Property Inspector palette – This palette should display the valid attributes for any element that is supported by the editor, and allow those attributes to be edited via input form controls specific to the element.

    * The editor should allow the input of pre-formatted content from external sources via copy & paste while preserving the formatting to the required HTML spec.

    * The editor should also support the transport of content authored in the editor to external sources that are “Rich text enabled” via Copy & Paste in such a way that the target destination is able to preserve the formatting as it was authored in the Flash HTML editor.


    Interested parties are encouraged to reply to this request via email by contacting:

    Scott Blanchard
    VP, Research & Development
    Octigon, LLC
    sblanchard@octigon.com
    Re: FlashMX Rich Text Editor

  2. #2
    Moonlight shadow asheep_uk's Avatar
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    If you wanted to use HTML - just use HTML! Flash is not for HTML, it is for the bigger things in life

    Those kind of things that you are asking for can all be found in Dreamweaver. All that will happen is that Flash player will have to have all the HTML code, which will make the download bigger, and if something is left out or something changes, or other browsers use different methods then the whole system will colaspe.

    TE

  3. #3
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    Has this project got off the ground, if so do you have any examples. I would be very interested to know if you have managed to convert forms into flash output...

    Cris.

  4. #4
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    this proposal requires Seed Funding

  5. #5
    Moderator enpstudios's Avatar
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    Moved to the Boardroom !!

  6. #6
    Moonlight shadow asheep_uk's Avatar
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    The ones in bold are the things it should have, everything else it already has.
    Originally posted by spinnergy
    B – Bold text
    U – Underline text
    I – Italicize text
    * - Left Align
    * - Center Align
    * - Right Align
    * - Create Ordered List
    * - Create Unordered List (Bullets)
    * - Left Indent
    * - Right Indent
    * - Insert Horizontal Rule
    * - Insert Hyperlink
    * - Insert Anchor
    * - Insert Table Why?
    * - Insert Image
    * - Insert Div
    * - Insert Span - only IE,
    * - Cut
    * - Copy
    * - Paste
    * - Undo (must support atleast 10 levels)
    * - Redo (must support atleast 10 levels)
    * - Format Text Font Family
    * - Format Text Size
    * - Apply CSS Class - not support by all browsers
    * - Apply CSS Style - not support by all browsers

    * - Apply Paragraph Formatting - normal, preformatted, Bulleted List, Numbered List, H1-H6

    * - Apply Hexadecimal Color – must be a draggable palette consisting of both web safe palette and RGB color spectrum options.

    * Context Sensitive Property Inspector palette – This palette should display the valid attributes for any element that is supported by the editor, and allow those attributes to be edited via input form controls specific to the element.

    * The editor should allow the input of pre-formatted content from external sources via copy & paste while preserving the formatting to the required HTML spec.

    * The editor should also support the transport of content authored in the editor to external sources that are “Rich text enabled” via Copy & Paste in such a way that the target destination is able to preserve the formatting as it was authored in the Flash HTML editor.
    TE

  7. #7
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    How do you figure, asheep???

    I don't know which Flash Based Rich Text editor you are referring to when you say:

    everything else it already has

    What I am asking is for someone to take on the project to BUILD such an editor that will be viewable in a flash-enabled browser. Currently, such an application DOES NOT EXIST, hence the proposal.

    The genesis of this project is that my company produces and sells a content management application suite that relies on IE5+ "CONTENTEDITABLE/DESIGNMODE" property to allow WYSIWYG editing of a document in a web browser by an end user in a very user-friendly manner similar to MSWord.

    What we are seeking to do is to free ourselves (and our clients) from having to have a particular web browser(IE5) to operate our application. So we are looking to Flash to make that happen. The only thing that we currently have that cannot easily be replicated in Flash is the editor. It must exceed the functionality of our current solution in order for this to move forward. And those items listed in the proposal represent the current functionality that we have with the "IE only" solution.

  8. #8
    Moonlight shadow asheep_uk's Avatar
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    So you almost saying that they should have a Dreamweaver version inside Flash.

    Never gona happen.

    If they did do that, then their sales of Dreamweaver would drop a lot and they would loose money - not good.

    TE

  9. #9
    curmudgeon swampy's Avatar
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    Re: How do you figure, asheep???

    Originally posted by spinnergy
    I don't know which Flash Based Rich Text editor you are referring to when you say:

    everything else it already has

    What I am asking is for someone to take on the project to BUILD such an editor that will be viewable in a flash-enabled browser. Currently, such an application DOES NOT EXIST, hence the proposal.

    The genesis of this project is that my company produces and sells a content management application suite that relies on IE5+ "CONTENTEDITABLE/DESIGNMODE" property to allow WYSIWYG editing of a document in a web browser by an end user in a very user-friendly manner similar to MSWord.

    What we are seeking to do is to free ourselves (and our clients) from having to have a particular web browser(IE5) to operate our application. So we are looking to Flash to make that happen. The only thing that we currently have that cannot easily be replicated in Flash is the editor. It must exceed the functionality of our current solution in order for this to move forward. And those items listed in the proposal represent the current functionality that we have with the "IE only" solution.

    it does exist, we built one for a company in a product called "playstation to workstation" which aimed to get playstation players educated in computer programming.

  10. #10
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    Re: Re: How do you figure, asheep???

    it does exist, we built one for a company in a product called "playstation to workstation" which aimed to get playstation players educated in computer programming.
    Swampy, are you serious? In flash5 or MX? Could you give me some more info on the project and where I might see some examples? This will go along way toward prooving the feasibility of the project if you have examples of all the functionality that I am describing existing in a flash based application.

    What is your company and are you interested in this project, if asked?

  11. #11
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    I have also created a HTML creating flash appliaction which uses PHP and MYSQL as a storage medium. Its not round trip though, it only creates, it can't read any old HTML it can only read the database and produce css based html documents.. ( and Layer based ones for NS4 )

  12. #12
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    Originally posted by crisward
    I have also created a HTML creating flash appliaction which uses PHP and MYSQL as a storage medium. Its not round trip though, it only creates, it can't read any old HTML it can only read the database and produce css based html documents.. ( and Layer based ones for NS4 )
    Hey Crisward, does your editor support WYSIWYG and the other requirements of the app? If so, would you elaborate, if you care to?

  13. #13
    Modding with Class JabezStone's Avatar
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    There was a post here some time back in the BoardRoom from RiceMaster, in which he briefly discussed a complex software classes and tools that allow you to port existing desktop applications to the web via Flash.

    this is the link...

    I've contacted RiceMaster again to see if there is any updated information on this. I'll post here when I learn more.

  14. #14
    for the win Asclepeos's Avatar
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    impractical yet exceptionally difficult even for the new advances in MX. This job is certainly not for an individual but a group of at least three. I mean you'll need a flash wiz, Java/PHP/PERL/Cold Fusion/ script junkie. and you'll need a database monkey XML/SQL.

  15. #15
    For a project of this scope it would require a great deal of time and work. It's not impossible, but it doesn't seem feasible. You're looking at a project that deserves a very high budget... One I don't think you are really expecting in this case.

  16. #16
    Modding with Class JabezStone's Avatar
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    Originally posted by [-S|NiStEr_MiNd-]
    ...deserves a very high budget... One I don't think you are really expecting in this case.
    Why would you say that? It looks like they have the capacity to be very serious about this.

    Not feasable? Hrmm. I think it's feasable for building lower-complexity sites that are more template-based, however it seems that a java app would probably be more useful. I think it has merit, though, and wouldn't be surprized if it does extremely well in the "novice" arena when it's finished.


  17. #17
    I meant I didn't think it was feasible in terms of production cost versus revenue the application would generate, as opposed to purchasing tools already available out there. It just doesn't seem like a very cost effective project to me, unless they're planning on marketing it widely and reselling it. If their using it just for internal clients the cost wouldn't justify itself.

  18. #18
    for the win Asclepeos's Avatar
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    Though I have a rough idea of how to do the whole HTML thing in my head, I still don't understand the point of it. I mean it's hard just for the sake of being hard. When the program is done using it would be well pointless. I mean it would be riding a bicycle when you have a dodge viper in the garage.

  19. #19
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    Originally posted by spinnergy
    Originally posted by crisward
    I have also created a HTML creating flash appliaction which uses PHP and MYSQL as a storage medium. Its not round trip though, it only creates, it can't read any old HTML it can only read the database and produce css based html documents.. ( and Layer based ones for NS4 )
    Hey Crisward, does your editor support WYSIWYG and the other requirements of the app? If so, would you elaborate, if you care to?
    It is fully WYSIWYG. It will allow for image upload and resizing and has the facility to import png and jpg. It allows the creation of rollovers and output search engine friendly pages with user definable meta tags. I have built it with desktop publishing in mind. I also plan to develop a form creation module.

    The previous post was wrong about this being beyond the scope of one person. I have an industrial design background so I understand user friendly interface design. I can write Javascript, Actionscript, Html, PHP, SQL, and have a solid grounding in Flash which I have been using for around 3 years. The only information I lacked to make this work was the configuration of PHP. So I set an old computer up as a Linux server and taught myself basic command shell stuff. Configured my own copy of PHP and transported this to my web hosting.

    The project to date is 16 month old but has built in pace since the release of MX. Previous to that text box sizing would have had to be done server side. ( or with a palette of variable sizes. ). I think MX has the scope to create a multitude of Microsoft type applications, how long before some one release a MS Word or Excel clone? How long before someone writes a server side conversion utility for these? How long before most of our software lives on the other end of a cable..?

    Cris.

  20. #20
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    Hi,

    the "table conversion" and similar viewer utilities may already be on their way...

    I once was working on another "wysiwyg" type editor, not for html input but for advanced text manipulation (something similar to the text tool in your favourite drawing app, with different fonts, kerning, condensing or expanding stuff)
    While I found solutions for some of the problems involved (such as loading fonts at runtime), the fact that every little thing was done in actionscript rather than in native code caused _very sluggish_ behavior (at least when running the editor on a 200 MHz machine)

    Musicman

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