Chapter 6. Automating and Extending
Creating Custom Commands with the History Panel
Extending Fireworks 135
Best PracticesKnowing When to Use Batch
Although Macromedia has done an outstanding job
of balancing Fireworks's powerful functionality with its
easy-to-use interface, they also recognize that you might want to
customize the way Fireworks works to meet your needs. In this
chapter, we take a look at how you can use Fireworks to reduce your
design time by making repetitive tasks a snap and enhancing the
The plain truth is that although a lot of
graphic and web design is fun, some repetitive tasks can become
mundane. A while back, I designed a website for a client who
collected and sold stamps. At any given time, he had several
thousand stamps in his collection and the vast majority of them
were for sale. He contracted with me to create a website for him
and to digitize all the stamps so his customers could view the
stamp prior to purchasing it. In addition, he wanted to put a
digital watermark on the image with his company logo, so that other
philatelists (the fancy
for stamp collectors) wouldn't
" his images for use on their sites. This
each stamp, I would have to
Scan the stamp.
Add a digital watermark to the full image.
Resize the stamp for display on the site.
Create a thumbnail of the stamp.
For a single stamp, that process would take
about 10 minutes to do, which doesn't sound like much until you
start getting into the sheer
of the project. At 10 minutes
each, 3,000 stamps would take 30,000 minutes or 50 hours. At
, that's almost $2,500 dollarsa price that my client just
wouldn't be able to stomach.
Luckily, automating the process in Fireworks
helped me cut the time required to complete the entire process of
digitizing the images to less than 15 hours.