Express Animator

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Express Animator
Express Animator screenshot
Stable release Express Animator (1.0) / December 1, 2007
Operating system Windows
Type Animation Creator
License Proprietary EULA
Website Express Animator home page

Express Animator is a software program for making animations, primarily Flash animations for websites.[1] It is similar to Adobe's Flash MX software but has additional features such as skeletal animation and exporting to Silverlight format while lacking advanced features such as advanced scripting. It is of the genre of vector based graphics programs in that it stores the coordinates of the shapes vertices. The shapes are filled with either colours, gradients, or bitmaps.


Skeletal Animation

Express Animator features skeletal animation which is a way of linking together shapes such as arms or legs so that can be animated like a puppet. This allows the user to create moveable characters.


The primary method of animation is that of tweening. This means that the user specifies the position, orientation and colour of the first and last frames of an animation and the computer fills in all the intermediate positions.[2]


Express Animator features morphing (also called shape tweening) which allows the user to animate smooth transformations between two shapes.

Javascript Interfacing

Although Express Animator does not implement the full ActionScript it is possible to make games with Express Animator using Javascript interfacing. This is a similar method to the way Silverlight implements interactions. This means that the user gives a reference name to each MovieClip in a frame. Then the user can interface with the objects in javascript. For example the following takes the position of a MovieClip with reference object1 and adds 20 to it:

var x= SWFobject.TGetProperty("_root.object1",0);


Where SWFobject is the javascript DOM object which represents the embedded SWF.

Import and Export Formats

Express Animator imports and exports media files in several formats to various extents. The main ones are:

Format File Extension Extent
Flash Animations SWF Imports and exports animations, Flash version 8.0, sound, FLV video, fully featured.
Windows Video AVI Exports and renders animations to video with sound. Imports windows AVI files as series of bitmaps.
Silverlight XAML Exports one frame only
Scalable Vector Graphics SVG Exports one frame.

Import, compatible with about 99% of SVG images in the Open Clip Art Library.

Portable Document Format PDF Exports frames as pages of e-book.
Encapsulated Postscript EPS Exports one frame.
Bitmap formats BMP JPG GIF PNG TIFF Exports and renders single frames or several frames as separate bitmaps.

Imports images into the animation.

Animated GIFs GIF Imports animated GIFS which are imported as movieclips composed of separate bitmaps. Exports animations as animated GIFs of any size.
Windows Metafile EMF Exports one frame to Windows Enhanced Metafile format.
Flash Video FLV Imports Flash Video into application for output in SWF files.
Windows Audio WAV Imports Windows sound files for use in animations.

Also imports of one track of MIDI files for inbuilt synthesizer.

Motion Capture BVH Imports motion capture files


Express Animator has a point and click scripting environment which is limited to basic actions useful for simple animations such as hyperlinks, frame navigation and button events. More complicated actions must be implemented via Javascript interfacing. For example to call a javascript function myfunction from a button the user would add the following action using the menus:


It should be noted that since its release in late 2007, updates have been regularly promised (including more advanced scripting functions) but that these have never materialised. The homepage forum has also been kept offline 'for maintenance' for a year and 'News' updates are exceptionally irregular.

See also


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