FITC Toronto 2013

It’s that time of the year again, FITC Toronto 2013 kicks off in less than a week. Get your tickets here.

Events Mobile & Devices

Screens 2011 = New FITC Mobile Conference

For those who follow this mobile development space, the FITC Mobile conference in Toronto should be familiar. This year, the event is renamed to SCREENS.

It’s two full days of presentations and one optional day of workshop, all focused on mobile development for various devices.

Topics covered include:

Android OS • App Success • BlackBerry Tablet OS • Corona SDK • Designing for Mobile • Mobile Marketing • Digital Home • Grand Central Dispatch and Blocks • iOS • jQuery Mobile • Managing Mobile Projects • Metro • Microsoft Stack • HCI • QNX • Thread Management • UI • UX • Windows Phone

Companies represented include:

Microsoft • Adobe • HP • Wavefront • Indusblue • QNX • Mobicartel • Ludicrous Software • Jam3 Media • Best Buy • WhereCloud Inc. • Almer/Blank • Transcontinental Interactive • Teehan + Lax • Canadian Film Center

And speakers include:

Adam Stanley • Alex Kennberg • Bob Burns • Brad Wing • Brady Gilchrist • Chuck Freedman • Darren Osadchuk • Erik Von Harten • Faisal Abid • Greg Carron • Hod Greeley • James Maynard • Jean-Luc David • Joshua Granick • Joshua Marinacci • Julian Dolce • Kevin Suttle • Marin Alejandro • Martin Dufort • Matt Fisher • Matt Rix • Matthew Patience • Mikko Haapoja • Paul Laberge • Pearl Chen • Peter Nitsch • R Blank • Renaun Erickson • Robert Burdick • Rogers • Ryan Creighton • Sam Mithani • Scott Janousek • Steve Mason • Ted Patrick • Timothy Quinn

November 14-15, 2011 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

Thanks to the folks at FITC, here is a 10% off promo code: Quantumwave. The super early bird special ends on August 26, just 3 days away.

See you there!


FITC Toronto 2011 (with promo code)

Look at this banner. What do you see?

To me, it reminds me how time flies. Has it been 10 years already!?

The memory of the first Flash In The Can (before it was renamed to FITC) is still fresh in my mind. I gave a presentation on Object-Oriented Programming in ActionScript 1.0. The room was packed and people were sitting on the floor in front of me, with more standing outside the door. Because the next session speaker had to cancel and more people wanted to come to my session, I was asked to do another presentation. It was great to see so much interest back then on OOP in Flash. Of couse, things have changed so much since, with ActionScript 2.0 and 3.0, improvements to the language attracted many developers from other domains to Flash.

In the years after that first event, I also presented on Design Patterns, more ActionScript, Flash development, Flash Lite, and mobile development… And now we’re in this “post-PC” era, where mobility and geolocation are reaching the mainstream. With it comes more mobile devices, tablets, and the competition on the mobile space is just getting started.

FITC is the most successful design and technology conference/festival. This year you can get 10% discount using this code: swfoo10

I’m glad to be part of the FITC family from the very beginning. This 10th anniversary event is certainly more exciting than ever. Check out the FITC 2011 Toronto website for more info.


FITC Mobile

Coming “real soon now” (Sept 13-14) here in Toronto (Canada) is FITC Mobile, the first ever mobile event hosted by the same folks who started FITC 7 years ago.

FITC Mobile 2009

When I first heard about this conference, my reaction was “Finally!”

Ever since I gave my first presentation at the first FITC back in 2002 and other conferences such as Flash Forward and Adobe MAX, my topics shifted from OOP, design patterns, ActionScript programming to mobile and devices in the last few years.

For about 4 years, I worked mostly on different mobile and devices projects, while still handling regular web application projects. As I’ve mentioned in my talks, the mobile market will only get bigger. There are more people using mobile devices than computers, and this is especially true for some countries where the infrastructure for wireless is more advanced than landline networks.

Although the mobile market hasn’t been adopted as fast as anticipated in the last few years, the scene has changed dramatically since the Apple iPhone and App Store came along. Now with Apple, Nokia, Samsung, LG, Google, Microsoft, Palm and others all fighting for the mobile market share, mobile is finally getting the attention of developers, companies and consumers.

It is with great pleasure to see speakers from different parts of the world, from different companies and platforms to come to Toronto for this two-day event. Coverage includes Apple iPhone, Google Android, Nokia & Symbian, RIM Blackberry, Palm Pre, Microsoft Windows Mobile, mobile marketing and more.

Check out the FITC Mobile site for more details.

Events iPhone

360 | iDev conference at eBay in San Jose

After coming back from Seoul for less than a week, I was in San Jose for the 360|iDev iPhone conference. To keep this short, the conference was really great – not only was it affordable, the sessions were informative, and it was a great community event for networking too. In many other conferences, companies spend considerable efforts in pitching their products or services; I saw a lot less fluff at 360|iDev, and a lot more substance.

It was also great to meet my old friend Sam Wan again. He found out about the conference only a few days before it started from my twitter, and decided to join. You can read about his comments at his new blog.

Another person I met was Rob Toole, who is also a Flash mobile developer, now developing a financial app for the iPhone. Rob invited me and a few other folks to talk about mobile development, the conference, and has posted it as a podcast on iTunes.

A big surprise was from Bill Perry, ex-Adobe mobile evangelist who now works at Nokia in Mountain View. It was good to see Bill again. And who would expect to receive a 5800 XpressMusic phone at an iPhone conference? Thanks Bill for the first S60 5th edition touchscreen phone, so I can start developing for it.

Another ex-Adobe friend I met was Sumi Lim, who now works at Samsung just down the road from eBay where the conference was held. It was really great to chat with Sumi outside of conferences. She’s now working on the Samsung Mobile Innovator program for Windows Mobile. Check it out!

What I got from this conference was more than the technical, but also the marketing and distribution of iPhone applications and games, and met with fellow developers. Needless to say, I can’t recommend this conference enough. Keep an eye on their next event!

Events Flash Lite Mobile & Devices

Flash on the Beach

Brighton is a nice little town by the sea in southern England. This is my first Flash on the Beach conference, and it’s been great so far…except a few hiccups.

John Davey with speakers

Haven’t had time to sight-see yet, as I had to look for a doctor yesterday (woke up with painful red eye). Of course, if I were in Canada, it’d be much simpler. My first thought was to go to the local pharmacy and pick up some eye drop; unfortunately, they wouldn’t sell it without a prescription. They referred me to a nearby doctor (GP), but when I got there, I learned that the GPs don’t accept Canadians as patients. I was then referred to a local medical chamber, who told me they don’t have an eye doctor. After going to five different clinics, I finally found a private doctor who would take a look. He looked at my eye and gave me a prescription. I went to a pharmacy and was told the prescription is similar to an off-the-counter eye drop, and asked if I would choose the lower cost eye drop instead. Long story short, I wasted yesterday looking for eye drop.

Today was presentation day. I went to the Pavilion Theatre an hour early to set things up. When I got there, the theatre was almost full. It was time for my presentation! What happened? Turns out the clock on my computer was adjusted automatically when Toronto changed the time on the weekend, and I wasn’t looking at the time on the phone (which gets its time from the wireless carrier here). Panic. As I had a lot of devices, DV camera, computer, power transformer, power bar…etc. to set up, it took quite a while to get everything going. The other issue (which I didn’t encounter during tech check) was the technician couldn’t get the video out signal from my Nokia N95. This was a bit of a problem because many of my demos were to be projected to the big screen directly from the phone! Instead, I had to hold up the phone and asked the audience to look at it instead. Glad there were a few laughs or I’d have fainted with these two incidents.

Anyway, the presentation went along and ended at exactly 2:30pm. I managed to cover everything except a demo with a Wii Remote controlling the phone. But the software is free and source code is included; so it’s easy for anyone to go pick it up and perhaps adapt it for Flash Lite using something like KunerLite.

For those who asked for my presentation, you can download it here.

It’s time to eat dinner with the other speakers, and hopefully will enjoy Brighton in post-presentation mode…

P.S. Thanks to Bill Perry from Adobe for providing the Flash Media Server streaming service for my demo of live video streaming to the phone.

Events Flash News

Flash on the Beach

Flash on the Beach

Keith Peters leaked the speaker list of Flash on the Beach, to be held from November 4-7 in Brighton, UK. According to the list, I’m one of the confirmed speakers.

Here’s the list so far:

Andries Odendaal
Aral Balkan
Branden Hall
Brendan Dawes
Carlo Blatz
Carlos Ulloa
Carole Guevin
Chris Allen
Chris Orwig
Craig Swann
Dave Williamson
Dave Yang
Erik Natzke
GMUNK (Bradley Grosh)
Grant Skinner
Hillman Curtis
Hoss Gifford
Jim Coudal
Joey Lott
John Grden
Joshua Davis
Keith Peters
Kristin Henry
Lisa Larson
Marcos Weskamp
Mario Klingemann
Michael Ninness
Mike Jones
Neville Brody
Niqui Merret
Renee Constantini
Rich Shupe
Richard Leggett
Rob Chiu
Robert Hodgin
Robert Reinhardt
Seb Lee-Delisle
Tink (Stephen Downs)

Confirm or deny? (Sounds like Apple’s Vista ad…)

[ May 7th update: The Flash on the Beach 2007 site is now live. And I can confirm that I’ll be speaking there this November. Looking forward to it! ]

Events Flash Lite Mobile & Devices

FITC presentation posted

After the presentation at FITC on Flash Lite and Mobile Development, a few people asked for my presentation file. I’ve converted it to PDF, grab it here. This is only my part of the presentation – i.e. not including Dongyub’s (his presentation was created using fancy 3D authoring tool; mine is plain basic).

We ran into some technical difficulties (what’s new?) at the conference: No Wi-Fi signal and no mobile phone signal (room was in the hotel basement level!) – both were needed for some demos (Chumby and apps on the phone). Luckily, I had some files on the laptop that were available.

Our own “Elmo”:

Another thing people might have noticed: We didn’t use the Elmo (device projector) provided by FITC. I tried it last year and found the quality was less than desirable. During this year’s technical rehearsal, we noticed it had issue projecting some device screens and produced moire patterns. So I decided to use my own method.

Instead of using the Elmo that outputs S-Video signal, I connected my Sony TRV900 3-CCD DV camcorder to the laptop with a firewire cable, and created a simple Flash Video Viewer (Flash Player 9) to display the video on screen (so everything is projected digitally with the rest of the presentation). Because of the way the camera was positioned, I added code to flip the image upside-down (which is projected right-side-up).

Here’s the (ActionScript 3.0) code:


var cam:Camera = Camera.getCamera();
cam.setMode(640, 480, 30);

var vid:Video = new Video();
vid.width = 640;
vid.height = 480;

// flip image upside down
vid.rotation = 180;
vid.x = 640;
vid.y = 480;



function keyHandler(evt:KeyboardEvent):void {
    switch (evt.keyCode) {
        case Keyboard.UP:
            vid.rotation = 180;
            vid.x = 640;
            vid.y = 480;

        case Keyboard.DOWN:
            vid.rotation = 0;
            vid.x = 0;
            vid.y = 0;

stage.addEventListener(KeyboardEvent.KEY_DOWN, keyHandler);


Perhaps other presenters may find this useful as well.

Events Flash Flash Lite News Others

FITC, IdN and newspaper interview

To those who are attending this year’s FITC festival, take a look at the IdN booth and the Two Faced exhibition. I wrote some articles for IdN many years ago (in 1993, when it was called MdN – Macintosh Designers Network), and interviewed the President & CEO of Macromedia (Bud Colligan) back then. IdN is very popular in Australia, U.S., Europe and Asia. It’s about time Canada finds out more about this designer magazine and their other publications.

For those who read (traditional) Chinese, here is the Sing Tao newspaper interview of me (楊光) at FITC (click to view full size at Flickr). They asked about my experience, work, this year’s presentation and the festival. I was a bit surprised they used almost 1/3 of the page on this article.

Newspaper article of me at FITC

My presentation is on tomorrow (Tuesday) at 2:45pm. It’s on Flash Lite and mobile development. I invited Dongyub Lee from Seoul to join me to talk about some of his projects on device UI and games development.

Thanks to Shawn Pucknell and the FITC team for another great festival.

Devices Events Flash Lite Mobile & Devices News

FITC 2007 guest speaker + discount code

I’m glad to announce that I’ve invited Dongyub Lee from Seoul as a guest speaker at my FITC presentation on Flash Lite and Mobile Development.

Dongyub is the CEO of DnL Productions, with offices in Seoul and Toronto. He created the Flash Lite User Interface for the iRiver U10 and Viliv P1. We’ll be talking about the state of Flash Lite development, new devices and technologies, development process and looking at some code.

Here is the description of our presentation:

One reason people come to events such as FITC is to be inspired. Whether it is the design, ideas or code. The number of devices running Flash Lite is at a record high. It is a great time to get into mobile and Flash Lite development.

In this session, we’ll look at mobile platforms, devices, tools, data access, trends and cool new technologies that may spark new ideas for your own development. We’ll de-construct a Flash Lite 2 application and see how the UI, navigation, event handling and external data access are implemented for a mobile device.

To register at 10% off the regular price, use this discount code: QW888798.