Surprisingly enough, I actually get a lot of hits on this site for my FlashPaper component.
What’s funny is that I’ve never once thought about charging for it, but today I realized that another company was charging an outlandish amount of money for much less functionality.
The company is Zanzibar Fiction and here is their pricelist. And yes… that’s up to $500 that they’re charging for deactivating the select and print buttons!! I just don’t get it.
But anyway, one thing that they added that my component didn’t have was color schemes for the FlashPaper interface. So to hopefully prevent anyone from spending that crazy amount of money, I decided to add it to my component… but make it even better. They offer 8 color choices (and they are all very ugly) and my component now lets you select any tint color and percentage that you like for the interface.
Oh and by the way it’s still free! 🙂
The FlashPaper component simplifies the process of working with the FlashPaper API and adds functionality either not documented or not provided in the API.
– Unzip FlashPaper_0.8.zip
– DoubleClick on FlashPaper.mxp to install with the Extension Manager.
FlashPaper Component Documentation
Our FlashPaper interface product does NOT require the use of any API and it easily integrates into the FlashPaper software installation without ANY technical knowledge. It is because we offer a superior quality product, we have the appropriate corporate and individual pricing structure.
Many users of FlashPaper do not have the technical knowledge or the time to work with API.
Unfortunately, even with an API solution, like the FlashPaper component provided by you, the result is still two Flash files and you will also get resize problems in the browser 🙂
Zanzibar Fiction TM – Precision Web Engineering
What do you mean by “superior quality product”?
I think that might be subjective.
But either way, I understand selling a product or service, but what are you actually selling that you feel deserves that amount of money? Anyone that happens to have Flash could install my component and output a file with more choices than yours in the matter of minutes. I understand offering a service to people that aren’t technologically savvy but I think you might be overcharging just a tiny bit, especially since you don’t even need to be technologically savvy to use my component, you just need Flash. They could download the 30-day trial or get their kid who probably has flash to do the same thing with my component for free.
Second thing… what’s the pitfall of having two Flash files?
Third… what resize problems? If you’re talking about scaling to match the browser, that’s not a problem. My component just gives the user the option, they can set the component to be as big as the swf file and then do the same thing yours does. But mine can also be smaller if they so choose.
Sorry if you feel like I attacked you, I just enjoy the open source community and think that people need to know about their options before purchasing a product or service that they could get for free.
Happy Day! 🙂
Quote from the zanzibarfiction website:
Warning: We provide Adobe FlashPaper v2.0 interface plugins for your FlashPaper software. Unlike the solution offered at http://www.yourpalmark.com which relies on FlashPaper API, our state-of-the-art FlashPaper interface plugins do not use API, requires no technical knowledge, no flash development environment and are very easy to integrate into your FlashPaper software installation. Any solutions offered using FlashPaper API does not work properly (like resizing the browser window), are not secure and the result is two Flash .swf files which you need to distribute. We provide you with a modified version of the core DefaultViewer2.swf file that comes with FlashPaper software and easily integrates into your FlashPaper software installation of your computer.
First of all thats not a warning, it’s a cheap sales trick to get you to actually read the text.
Does zanzibarfiction feel so insecure about their own software that they have to directly insult open source developers. That sounds like a direct insult towards the open source FlashPaper Component. Bottom line $500 dollars IS a lot of money. There is no ways I would pay that amount of money for such a small piece of software.
Thanks a million for releasing your component!!!
I will gladly recommend it to all my colleagues, and developer friends.
We provide FlashPaper interface plugins to enforce copyright. This means that the print and select buttons needs to be deactivated in the resulting FlashPaper document .swf file.
Now, if you have two .swf files, one in your controlling interface and the other is the FlashPaper document, whats going to happen?
Anyone can easily bring up the second FlashPaper document .swf file from the Browser Cache and print it, so your API solution just does not work when it comes to enforcing copyright of FlashPaper documents on the internet.
Hence in the context of enforcing copyright, and the easy to use and secure solution we provide is therefore justified in our corporate and invidual pricing structure. Our individual pricing structure is very affordable.
With regards to choosing the color scheme, we can alter colors of different parts of the FlashPaper interface not just the whole, in other words, we can design an interface with difference colors in different parts of the interface FREE of charge for the client.
Our FlashPaper interface product is the modified version of the DefaultViewer2.swf for the client, this means installation is easy and fast. The resulting functionality and output of FlashPaper remains the same. No need for Flash Development environment or spending days trying to learn API
And here is the real bonus: we provide the pioneering Author link button on the top right hand corner of our FlashPaper interface which is a subscription service business model, normally it is linked to our default Author link page via the subscription engine at our web site, however, when an exsiting user places an order for an Author Link subscription of a certain duration, all the documents that he produced using our FlashPaper interface can be instantly linked to any URL via the author link button, this is powerfull stuff. – Hence the justified pricing structure and “Superior Quality Product” 😉
We let the users decide, which is the best products. However, no hard feelings.
Zanzibar Fiction TM
Zanzibar Fiction is a great company name. Don’t be fooled by high prices and “fictitious” claims. I agree that ZF’s product serves a valuable purpose, but instead of using this oportunity as a cheap marketing tool they should take these comments as valuable market research.
A note to ZF:
Your prices are too high, and we probably won’t bother to use your software.
Not only have you insulted the developers who support open source software, you have shown your true colours by stabbing at your competitors with some of the cheapest marketing tricks I’ve ever seen. You have no clue as to who your target market should be, and the same people who you have insulted are the people that are likely to actually consider buying your software. I hope this publicity you have claimed backfires and people realize that are really just trying to rip them off.
Lower your prices and stop stepping on people to get to the top!
However, no hard feelings. 😉
I do see the benefit of the single FlashPaper swf in regards to the copyright. That’s an interesting idea as it does add an extra level of protection. Of course its still not 100% secure as I’ve been able to get to the original content of some of your protected docs (but I won’t discuss how so hopefully your product will stay secure).
About the color, you say FREE of charge, but I think that you are offering it as a service that is included in the amount of money the client is paying for the initial product, unless I’m mistaken and anyone could come to you with a FlashPaper document and ask you to color it for them without buying anything from you.
I’m still slightly confused about the Author link button. When the user creates the initial FlashPaper document, couldn’t she just add a link anywhere on the page to her website. In fact, couldn’t she make it as big as she wanted at the top of the page. Seems like that would be a little more obvious than the small button at the top corner.
Hopefully this discussion is giving the users more information about both of our products so they will be able to make an informed decision on their own.
Thanks and talk with you soon!
We have two pricing structures, one for corporate/organisations and other for individuals which are very low. We did some market research before putting the price model together.
In fact we only use open source in our backoffice and we are a great fan of open source. No dis- respect intended to anyone, least of all the open source developers community.
However, as we are the only one on the planet that provide FlashPaper interface plugins to enforce copyright, it is expected that we will receive criticism on some aspect of our services or products. This is great as it gives us the chance to improve our products and services.
The warning at our web site protects potential customers who may want to use Mark’s products for enforcing copyright. The solution he provides to remove print or select button to enforce copyright does not work.
Zanzibar Fiction Team
I tweaked your comment slightly to direct your attention towards me instead of Ryan. In the last paragraph of your original comment you were talking as if he wrote the component. Just FYI, in case you were confused at which commenter on this site is the author of the component and blog.
I’m fearful about contributing to this thread, as I’m one of the Great Unwashed that doesn’t speak ActionScript. I work for a university publisher with a tiny budget for “digital initiatives” and frankly, FlashPaper looks pretty good to us right now–though we need to disable printing and copying features and perhaps fly the university colors in the browser. $500 is a significant dent in my budget, even given the (generally) high regard with which we’re viewed by the reading public.
This leads me to a politically questionable query, based on the exchange here: Mark, would you have any interest in producing a plug-in for your component, so that even a complete idiot like myself could use it?
Regardless, thanks for your time!
First of all, let me say that Zanzibar are really lame in their way of doing business with all my respect to all of them. FlashPaper is such an interesting application that has a “brightening” future as a standalone reader similar to Acrobat and also when integrated in some RIA or other technologies like the famous Flipping Books.
For jackanapes, no need for a plugin, the components itself is already sufficient to embed it in any other flash interface with the appropriate color theme.
For Mark, I was playing around with your amazing component, it’s very useful and the approach is very interesting but I noticed something abnormal while publishing ; When I compile the project in Macromedia Flash the component loads normally and fast, no problem ! but, when I run the .html page after publishing the project, the compo keeps loading and nothing is seen ! Is there any problem or note i have to know ? Is this a sort of bug ?
And the last thing please, I am trying to integrate this component with a Flipping Book component in order to be able to flip the pages and keep seeing all the UI elements and the respective buttons. I don’t have any result until now but I would be very interested if someone could give me a hint or a way to achieve that in a clean way.
Thanks for providing this! It’s exactly what I was looking for and it works great! Do you happen to know if Adobe plans on releasing future versions of FlashPaper, or is Version 2 going to be the last release? Thanks again for sharing all of your hard work!
When I first searched for something to do what this component does I found zanzibar and like stated here before it was way to expensive for a small company like ours.
But with having no experience with flash at all I am having a hard time to get somethings to work. I am trying to set the sidebar width but nothing seems to change when ever I put the code in.
So, I put this line on an actions layer:
but nothing happens to the sidebar even if I try to set it at 0 it still appears. So obviously I putting this in the wrong spot. Where do I put that code to set my sidebar width?
Due to popular demands for our products and services, we have reduced our prices. Please visit our site.
Zanzibar Fiction Team.
Zanzibar has changed their prices. They have cut their prices, now the most they will charge for a FlashPaper interface is only $70 and Author link service is only $10 per month.
Good to see you re-evaluate your prices.
Just a personal testomonial regarding the debate over the merits of the yourpalmark API versus Zanzibar’s…
I initially came across yourpalmark and was really excited to see this solution available. Unfortunately two of the issues Zanzibar mentions, a single SWF file and a flashpaper panel that resizes with the browser were very important to my client.
At the time I posted several messages on this site asking for help with these issues (you can still see my messages from Sept 29 and Oct 6 under FlashPaper Component 0.7.1). Unfortunately no one got back to me. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out flash ActionScript to do it myself, but got nowhere.
It would have been a lot more rewarding to figure it out myself, but I just didn’t have the time and ultimately the Zanzibar solution for $79 made a lot more sense for my client than paying me to figure this stuff out at my rate. Maybe if I were a flash expert it would be different but the fact is, after trying both, Zanzibar offered a better solution for my situation.
Just wondering why Zanzibar site is down.
darn, it seems Zanzibar’s domain name is gone…
i was hoping to buy their solution. I want to tweak the flashpaper toolbar, but I have no idea how to use the API. Your documentation is just for the API. do you have any sample code or tutorial or something?
keep it unreal,
There is a FlashPaper component tutorial in my tutorials section up above.
Zanzibar’s Site is probabbly down because it’s product violates Adobe’s EULA, by moding the defaultplayer.swf (or whatever it’s called) it’s in the comments in this blog:
moding in the way yourpalmark does sounds like it’s AOK according to that blog post.
Thanks for this Mark.
It seems the component does not install with Flash CS3? The extension manager needs an MXI file, not the provided MXP file…any ideas how to install this on CS3?
thanks ! very nice tool )))
This looks like exactly the component I am looking for! I’m super excited…but…as TC mentioned above I can’t get the MPX file to load in Flash CS3. Is there another way to get this component loaded?
I figured it out! TC, if you are still listening, download Adobe Extension Manager 1.8 (http://www.adobe.com/exchange/em_download/). It loads into that just fine once you get it downloaded.
I’m off to figure out how to work this component.
I try to attach a TextField or MovieClip
but i have the feeling that flashPaper overide this functions even
ASSetPropFlags(path, null, 6, 1);
don`t help… 🙁
Hi, I installed the component in Flash MX and Flash CS3. In both cases (using different Extension Managers) I can see the component installed but, inside the Components panel in Flash, I cannot see any icon/text/component for FlashPaper. Can you help me here (I’m a newbie in Flash)?
Thanks a lot,
Thanks for all the work on this component – it makes working with Flashpaper a treat.
Here’s a tip for anyone who needs to use actionscript to scroll the document.by using the getIFlashPaper() you can actually access the core of the flashpaper document, and modify the scroll bar directly. It’s a bit of hack, but works:
These two function are your friend:
I just installed your component and it did exactly what I wanted to do in under a minute. I’m shocked that this is free and will supply a donation after Christmas. 🙂
is there anyway to customize the theme style of flashpaper swf files to match my interactive flash cd looks?
thaks, and congrats on your component, made my life so much easyer…
I am having problems loading remote documents i get a lot of Security Sandbox Violations when i try to read content of the document , any ideas?
I will try
Nice component, only one question how can I change the color of the scrollbar
I would like to give two big Thumbs Up for this. I’m a Softgrid Admin at a Community College, and I had a faculty member request/demand a way to deliver his semester’s tests (after students finished them) to his students without allowing printing or saving to disk.
I used this component with Flash and FlashPaper, and combined the end .swf with a sudo-kiosk’ed Opera browser (everything but the title bar and the minimize/restore/close buttons were visible).
hi, can i use this component in flex ?
“myflashpaper.setCurrentPage();” is valid!
“myflashpaper.documentPath = ” “; ” is valid!
This seems interesting however it would be nice to see a demo of what this can do.. I’ve searched your site but can’t seem to find any visual reference.
I wonder if you have considered the notion of providing you flashpaper pdf reader as swf file, so as to be able to port it automatically with a pdf from a vle or of content manager. As a swf file will play automatically on 97%+ of all pc or mac computers, such a swf file would run almost irrespective of what OS or browser is in use!
Thus providers of VLEs like Moodle would know what is going to happen to a pdf embedded file.
What do you think?
Is there a way to change the colors of the flash paper buttons?
A setStyle command perhapse?
I hate that green X(
Hello Mark, i just installed the component but is not showing in flash…
I appears in the Macromedia Extension Manager but not in the component panel in Flash MX
thnx in advance!
Just found this and it looks useful. I wonder about the extensibility/obsolescence but Scribd seem to have taken it up with some enthusiasm.
The UI elements all shift to the right when the “brand” button is removed, is there any way of changing that? I’d rather they went left!
Hey Mark, I’m excited about this component and can’t wait to use it. But when I go to your downloads page it circles me back to this posting page. Am I overlooking the actual .zip link?
Mark, thank you for your work.
I’m very new to all this, and I was wondering if: Is it possible, with your component, to avoid that my swf files got downloaded to the user’s temporary files?
Thanks in advanced.
I am Opensource developer.
I was able to pass variable from php to flash.
But wasn’t able make it read the different swf’s in single folder with click from the list of swf from a php page.
I don’t have hands on experience with adobe.
I am trying to build one for my own website.
I understand its quite late, hope it reaches you.
Do you have sample or advice, which could help.
Mark – Awesome component! I have used it in the past and was wondering if there is a way to automate the document conversion process. I have document file paths in a spreadsheet and I want to write a vba or .net subroutine to convert the document paths to the final FP.swf. Do you think I could use the API in that way???
Please get back to me.