Accessibility
 
Home / Showcase  
Showcase - History of Flash
 
Jonathan Gay

Jonathan Gay has been with Macromedia Flash since the early days of SmartSketch and FutureSplash.

 

by Jonathan Gay

Macromedia Flash began with a few bits of colored plastic.

As a child, I grew up playing with LEGOs when there were no LEGO men or whales or complicated accessory packs-just rectangular blocks and a few wheels. Those bits of colored plastic taught me the basics of engineering design, how to choose a design problem, and the process of iterative refinement. Even better, they helped me express my early passion for building things.

LEGO-based Design Process
My favorite project was building LEGO ships with lots of ramps that could hold my toy cars. This taught me that it's best to choose a problem that inspires you and challenges you-and one that you can accomplish with your limited capabilities and resources.

The human mind is much too limited to capture the entirety of a complex creation all at once. With LEGO, you can start with the vision and work out the details of the design as you progress. With patience and persistence, I developed the following LEGO-based design process. It's more or less the same process we ultimately used to develop Flash.

  1. Choose a problem: Build a LEGO ship.
  2. Develop a vision: What sort of ship will it be? How big will it be? What will it carry?
  3. Build: Build the framework of the ship.
  4. Fill in the details: Design and build the details of the ship, ramps, doors, etc.
  5. Test: Drive the cars around the ship and sail the ship while exploring the house.
  6. Refine: Take parts of the ship apart and make them better.
  7. Learn: Take what you learned from building this ship and use it to build a better one next time.

1, 2, 3, 4 next >