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by Robert Munoz - GUI Computing

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For Visual Basic programmers that want Powerpoint's graphical effects, FXTools is the the kit you have been waiting for. FXTools is a set of custom controls which allow you to add exciting image, shape and text effects to your VB multimedia applications.

This package is equipped with four different custom controls. An image, shape, text and label control. These controls emulate the standard VB controls and each share similar properties and effects. They have a combination of 50 main effects and over 42 dissolving effects. Effects include wipes, diagonals, pushes, pulls, splits, blinds, implosions, explosions, zooms, and many more.

The speed of the effect can also be adjusted by selecting different grain sizes (ie: the amount of area used when displaying an effect). They also include multitasking capabilities, which allow you to run other processes concurrently while the effect is generated.

Screen snap of FXTools Custom Controls
Other Features include -:
  • Label control - six 3D font styles, colored shadows, and true 3D bevel styles.
  • Image control - color transparency, image resizability and 3D colored borders.
  • Shape control - sixteen shapes, colored drop shadows and 3D colored borders for rectangles and squares.
  • Text control - 360 degree text rotation, six 3D font styles, and colored shadows.

Developed by ImageFX, FXTools is a powerful yet simple graphics tool. Each VBX has a Main, Transition, and a Dissolving property. These three properties are the heart of the effects. You can have an image phasing into the next image by simply setting the main and transition properties.

The speed at which an image is displayed is controlled by setting the delay and grain size and lastly, it allows a one, two or three pass image display. As far as image formats, the image control will accept the same image formats as that of VB, since these controls emulate the appropriate standard VB controls.

For professional graphical effects FXTools (priced at $229) is a good bet. For up-to-date pricing information refer to : the MultiMedia Introduction.


Written by: Robert Munoz
June 94

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