A minor update to Stykz was released that fixes a bug where double-clicking a Stykz document file to launch it would generate an error on Windows, a bug on Mac where you couldn’t export certain files to GIF format, and fixed a bunch of bugs in the Stykz Help app.

One more thing to be thankful for this year… :D

It’s been almost a year since the last public release of Stykz (RC4, Build 205 back in December of 2009), but I’m thrilled to be able to announce that the OFFICIAL RELEASE of Stykz 1.0 is now available for download, either through “Check for Updates” inside Stykz RC4, or from the download page on the Stykz web site.

During the last year, Stykz has been heavily tested by dozens of people across Mac and Windows platforms and in the process tons of bugs have been fixed and a few features added or refined. You can read the full release notes, but here are some key additions to Stykz 1.0:

  • Support for importing Pivot 3 .stks (sprites in a .stk are skipped – but the rest of the .stk is imported)
  • You can drag .stk and .styk files from the desktop into an open document to import it
  • GIF output is completely managed by a separate bundled command-line app (GIFsicle), so exported .gif files are much smaller, optimized, and fully compatible with all apps (AFAICT)
  • You can remove a node from a polyfill-in-progress without having to cancel and restart polyfilling (just Alt/Option-click the node that’s currently part of the polyfill you’re trying to create and it will be removed from the polyfill)
  • Export settings are now saved with the document and reused as the default choies when you go to export the animation again.
  • You can now use the < and > (actually it’s “,” and “.”) to go forward or backward one frame.
  • Full documentation is in a separate “Stykz Help” app that includes detailed info for Pivot users looking at Stykz and for new users in general (a link to the ‘Create Your First Animation’ – one of the topics in the Stykz Help app – is on the Welcome Screen). Just choose Help > Stykz Help to bring up the app.

The release of Stykz 1.0 coincides with a change to the Stykz web site, which is now cleaner and easier to use and has lots of great info about Stykz, including examples of Stykz animations created by forum members (some of which also allow you to download the related .stykz file so you can take it apart and see how the animator created the animation).

Enjoy the new web site and the official release of Stykz 1.0!

(Now I can get to work on the Linux version… ;-)

Just a quick note to wish you a “Merry Stykzmas” and to let you know that a bugfix build of RC 4 is now available for download.

Here’s what’s fixed in Build 205:

  • General

    • Fixed bug where interface was showing “Classic”-style buttons on Mac PowerPCs. [ 1248 ]

  • Figure Manipulation

    • Fixed bug where nodes were not being shown on a selected figure when switching to the PolyFill tool. [1251]
    • Fixed bug where it was possible to have multiple figures selected, but when you clicked on the drag node, it would only drag one of them
    • Fixed bug where deleting multiple segments at once could put the figure into an odd state where the nodes don’t turn red when you click on the figure with the Select tool. [1245]
    • Added option to use CTRL-click (Win) or Cmd-click (Mac) to add segments or remove segments from a selection; this is an alternative to using the SHIFT key (which continues to work as before). [1241]
    • Changed selection behavior so that if you just click on a single figure (or component) of a selected group of figures (or components), the other elements become deselected and the thing you clicked on becomes the only selection. [1242]
    • Fixed bug where creating new figures with the node size set to anything else other than “Normal” would first create the line with normal sized nodes, and then afterwards it would “snap” to the selected node size. Now it operates seamlessly. [1238]
    • Fixed bug where hitting the Enter key while creating a segment with right-click-and-drag would generate an error. [1239]

  • Export

    • Fixed bug where exporting to QT wouldn’t alert you properly if you were exporting to an existing file path.
    • Fixed bug where exporting to QuickTime would sometimes cause the progress window to “hang” at the the beginning of “Prepping for export”.
    • Added warning dialog if you choose to export an animation to a size larger than the current stage size. [1249]

  • Import

    • Fixed bug where some Pivot .stk files were not importing properly (lines were at strange angles) [1252]

  • Menus

    • Fixed bug where no recent documents where displayed in the File menu after you closed the last open Stykz document (on Mac this was represented by having an “Open Recent” menu item with no submenus). [1250]

  • Playback

    • Fixed bug where the onionskin was not being redisplayed after exiting the StykzPlayer. [1246]
    • Fixed bug where clicking the close box to stop playback would sometimes cause the StykzPlayer to pop back open again and continue playing. [1243]

  • Palettes

    • Properties

      • Fixed bug where the mixed-state checkbox would sometimes not be clickable.
      • Fixed bug where the current document would not re-activate after clicking the lock icon (which would prevent you from moving or deleting a figure after you unlock it).

    • Frames

      • Fixed bug where trying to resize the Frames palette as soon as the first document opens would generate an error dialog. [1244]

  • Preferences

    • Fixed bug where color selection for selected/unselected nodes didn’t apply to the color outline on static nodes (they still showed blue/red regardless of the color you picked).

Enjoy!

The Stykz Development Team

I’m happy to finally be able to announce that Stykz 1.0 Release Candidate 4 is now available for download at the main Stykz site. This is the LAST version of Stykz to be released before the official 1.0 release, which I intend to put out before the end of the year (hopefully on or just after Christmas).

This version contains a number of features, a long list of bug fixes, improved performance in a number of areas, and the GIF animations are compatible with just about every app that we’ve tested (Mac and Windows)! The list of fixes/changes are long, but here are the highlights:

  • Fixed issue with documents not opening properly under Snow Leopard.
  • Added new Welcome Center which lets you open a recent document, open a blank doc, get help, link to tutorials, etc.
  • Reworked the architecture for manipulating figures to make it as accurate as possible – there should be no more rotate/scale issues.
  • Made polyfills more “intelligent”; if you add a node to a figure where the “parent” and “child” of the node you added is part of a polyfill, the new node you added becomes part of the polyfill.
  • Added support for directly opening .styk and .stk files.
  • Added ability to lock a figure so that it you can’t modify it in any way.
  • Added automatic saving and automatic backup
  • Modified interface of the Properties palette so that mixed selections would show as mixed and not as just the value of the first selected object in a group. Fields with mixed selections display as empty; checkboxes show a dash (Mac) or filled-in square (Win); color swatches show a diagonal slash through them.
  • Added decimal precision for width, angle, and length (and you can set how to display the precision in Preferences).

You can see the complete list of everything done for this release by going to the Release Notes page on the Stykz web site.

Two things to be aware of though:

  1. Since a number of issues prior to RC4 were related to corrupted preferences, RC4 will automatically reset the preferences to the “factory” settings, so you’ll need to go to the Preferences dialog and re-set them the way you want them.
  2. Similarly, there were some issues with upgrading older .stykz documents properly, so all pre-RC4 .stykz files will need to be run through another conversion to work properly with RC4.

This release has gone through a LOT of testing, including having a small group of dedicated testers on the Stykz forums working with builds and reporting issues, so although no software is bug-free, this one should hopefully have a lot fewer bugs than previous versions. Of course, please use the feedback mechanism to let me know know of any issues you find.

Hope you enjoy RC4, and I look forward to getting 1.0 out the door in the coming weeks.

The Stykz Development Team

Stykz and Snow Leopard
September 10th, 2009

With Apple just recently releasing Snow Leopard (OS X 10.6), I’ve received a couple of questions about whether there are any compatibility issues with Stykz on Snow Leopard or not.

I’m happy to say that Stykz operates just fine on Snow Leopard – in fact as far as we can tell it works just as well as it does on Leopard (10.5) or Tiger (10.4), so if you were delaying in updating to Snow Leopard, you have one less excuse! :-)

Happy animating!

The Stykz Development Team