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Issue 6.5


Picture Packer

An easier way to embed graphics in your REALbasic projects

Issue: 6.5 (July/August 2008)
Author: Marc Zeedar
Author Bio: Marc taught himself programming in high school when he bought his first computer but had no money for software. He's had fun learning ever since.
Article Description: No description available.
Article Length (in bytes): 19,221
Starting Page Number: 11
Article Number: 6508
Resource File(s):

Download Icon 6508.zip Updated: 2008-07-01 11:42:38

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Excerpt of article text...

Recently I was working on a personal project that included lots of pictures (icons and other graphics). Because I wasn't sure what I was doing, I first created temporary placeholder graphics. I figured it would be an easy matter to replace them with the real graphics later. Boy, was I wrong!

As I got into the project, I realized the icons needed to support transparency, which meant I had to save a separate mask file for each graphic as REALbasic can't import pre-masked pictures. Masks doubled the number of pictures in the project. Later, I kept thinking of additional graphics I needed. Each additional graphic needed to be dragged into my project file (along with its mask) and I had to add code to apply the mask to the first graphic to create the final masked picture object for use in my project. That was a lot of busy work and every time I made changes a lot of it had to be redone.

Throughout this project, for various reasons (most of them stupidity and short-thinking on my part), I had to completely redo my graphics several times. As I updated the graphics, I grew extremely frustrated with picture management. For instance, renaming or moving pictures broke REALbasic's link to them. Couldn't there be an easier way?

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