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Ron Ridley Auto Care Mall

  Macromedia Freehand 10

Once again I have been reviewing Macromedia's line for a few years now so reviews of previous versions can be found elswhere on the site. Thus we will cover only the new features that Macromedia has brought to Freehand 10.

Macromedia continues to impress me with each and every release in their line of web and graphic applications. Each release seems to have enough improvements and additions that realy do warrant the next release number. Unlike some software companies that release a product with a new number behind it, just to keep up.

Fill Patterns and Gradients - Macromedia FreeHand offers a stock collection of previewable presets that designers can use to achieve results right out of the box. Freehand also now ships with a library of graphic styles that can now be simply dragged and dropped on any graphic or text for instant effects.

True Contour Gradients - I really like this new tool, which enhances FreeHand's already powerful gradient capability. Multicolor gradients can now be applied to follow the contour of a path.

Symbol-Based Brush and Spray Strokes - If you are familiar with Flash, you will appreciate the way Freehand now uses reusable symbols to help keep files small. Brush strokes can be applied to any path to distribute a graphic along the length of path.

Macromedia Standard Pen Tool - Whether you're drawing in FreeHand, Macromedia Flash, or Fireworks, the new Macromedia

Standard Pen tool looks and behaves identically, offering a seamless transition between applications.

Editable Symbols Library - Increase your productivity with this new feature, which lets you edit symbols and quickly apply changes to multiple instances in multiple pages-just as you would in Macromedia Flash. The Symbol Edit window lets you access most of FreeHand's editing tools and functions in the workspace, independent of the original document.

Flash Player Test Window - The new Flash Player window, makes FreeHand a more tightly integrated Macromedia Flash authoring environment. It also makes moving between FreeHand and Flash easier.

I wonder if the day will come where we see Freehand and Flash being merged into one application? The two products already ship together in a Flash 5/Freehand 10 Studio. Some of the best new features in Freehand 10 are the ones that are geared towards making life a lot easier working between the two applications.

Macromedia Flash Navigation Panel- Use this timesaving feature to test your Macromedia Flash movies within FreeHand—before you export them to Macromedia Flash. The resizable Navigation panel streamlines the functions of the URL Editor by letting you apply links and Flash actions to graphics and text from within FreeHand 10.

All in all, Macromedia is making a big impact in the graphic industry. Ask anybody in the graphic, and in particular - web graphic industry and I can almost assure you that they will have at least one Macromedia application in their graphic and design tools that they use daily. Macromedia just keeps getting better!

Review ID Number: 327
  Product Details
Review Date: 2001-07-24
Reviewer: Brad Lawryk
Rating: 9 out of 10
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