"Flipper" Exporter: Clipper Magazine converted to entirely electronic pagination system in 2009. Working in a team comprised of Business Application Group developers and Art Directors, I developed a system to export InDesign files to Flash/SWF, simultaneously archiving and linking them to allow viewing in a web-based workflow form. I worked with a developer in New Zealand to customize the Shockwave (SWF) file to suit the exact needs of our users, because the standard InDesign SWF output was not customizable enough. It is a Mac desktop application that combines Applescript, custom code from the outside vendor, and Adobe frameworks.

Called "Flipper" because of the ability to preview both sides of a page interactively. Any Artist or Customer Service Rep can place ads, update the magazine master, and create an updated "Flipper" for internal use. This system allows multiple users to look at and work on a document, and to also allow Art Directors to monitor the status of magazines in near real-time.

Flipper main window

Programming highlights:

  • Cocoa classes and Applescript Objective-C classes working together, plus unix shell script calls
  • Extensive parsing of filenames with multiple formats, to determine future file saving location
  • Automatic file server mounting
  • File monitoring to confirm file is not being copied/in use when selected to process
 
 

The user interaction only requires users to drop files into a hot folder for processing.

Flipper user input and folder setup

Screenshot of Flipper in use (click for an actual Flipper to test):

Flipper showing both sides of a page