I made a storyboarding and progress tracking webapp

2013-02-03 19:10:22 by Pahgawk

Ok so in the middle of NATA last summer, I made a little progress tracking program to let you know how much you have to work on your animation each day in order to finish it on time. Today, I'm able to release a (somewhat) stable beta of what I thought to be the next logical step: A program in which you make storyboards, then check off progress for each slide (rough animation, backgrounds, sound, etc) and then the program tells you how you're doing (for example: At your current rate, you will finish in 9 days.)

So, I present to you, the sarcastically-named CoolStory!

You can go try it right now (if you use Chrome)! http://www.pahgawks.com/storyboards/

Firstly, this is currently for Google Chrome only. This project was also meant for me to learn Javascript and the cool new features of HTML5, but since implementation of HTML5 is still pretty radically different in all browsers, it currently only works the way I intend it to work in Chrome. In order to get Firefox to work, I need to change the colour picker and the date selectors and the way the slides load. For Opera, I need to change the way the colour picker works. For Internet Explorer, well, I have some work to do. For Safari, firstly, I need a mac, and then I need to change the date and colour pickers and possibly more. Also, right now, Chrome is the only browser that can save properly without uploading all the data to a server and then downloading it again. And that is why it is for Chrome only right now. More browsers soon to follow.

However, if you do use Chrome, you're in luck! Here are the features you can use right now!
- All the drawing tools and colour pickers and such work
- Add new slides with the + button in the timeline
- Hover over existing slides to move them up or down, remove them, or duplicate them (useful so you don't have to redraw backgrounds, until I make a better system for that.)
- In the settings window, set the project start and end date so that you can get a days remaining counter
- Under the drawing canvas for each slide, check off your progress as you go to get extra information in the settings panel
- Play back your storyboards using the play button in the toolbar! You can set the duration for each slide in the same area as the checkboxes (the duration also factors in to what percent of the entire project has been completed.)
- Save your storyboard locally as an xml file, which includes all the images and tracking metadata, speedily and without ever uploading it to a server (which means this app will eventually have offline support.)

That said, I'm finding new bugs every time I use it, so let me know if you find any so that I can fix them.


And now some little updates that don't have to do with CoolStory.

So as I said before, I'm trying to get into university for computer science or software engineering, so right now, that's my priority. That's why I'm releasing a program now and not a new video. In fact, that music video I said I was making earlier isn't going to happen any more. There was too much other stuff to focus on, and I didn't want to make a commitment that I wouldn't be able to follow through with, so unfortunately I had to drop the project. I have a lot more schoolwork than I initially expected, and I need to give that priority and keep my low-90s average so that everything else goes as planned.

I don't want to say that I'm giving up animation because I'm not, but I don't think I'm going to be making any new animations for a while. I won't be participating in NATA this year like I had wanted to earlier, which was a tough but necessary decision to make. For the next year and a half, unless something significant changes my plans, my limited free time is going to have to be spent elsewhere. I'm still going to try to keep in touch with everyone in NATA though, and hopefully I'll be able to make CoolStory (and possibly future programs) more useful that way.

Talk to you later, Newgrounds!


p.s. here's a screenshot of CoolStory.

I made a storyboarding and progress tracking webapp


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2013-02-03 21:49:58

It's too bad that you won't be able to put out more animations. They really are great. But the app looks cool, and it definitely helps as a little thing to show off.

Pahgawk responds:

yeah, one of the things I noticed when looking through the admission requirements for software engineering at the University of Waterloo is that I had to either have good marks in computer science class (I have 95s, which are good, but some people have better marks), good scores on the Canadian Computing Computation (which I haven't done yet, we'll see how that goes), or actual, finished programs that they can look at. I have a bad habit of making small, half-finished apps and such. Well, now I have two finished and useable apps. So that should help.

Once I am in a position where I feel more secure of my future, I'll devote some time to making more animations :)


2013-02-04 10:12:35

I would consider using cool story, as it looks awesome, but I've been storyboarding an animation that goes for 25 minutes, and I don't think I'm prepared to port that all into the app :/

Maybe next time.

Pahgawk responds:

No problem, that is completely understandable. That also gives it time to grow and iron out bugs (and maybe get wacom pressure sensitivity support) in the mean time :)


2013-02-04 11:21:43

is there a mac version for progress? :(

Pahgawk responds:

In the .zip file I linked to earlier, you can extract everything, ignore the .exe, and just open the .html file. Actually, people on windows should do that, too. The exe is really just there as a legacy thing in case people like the command line stuff.

...also if you were referring to the CoolStory webapp, it still works in Chrome for Mac.


2013-02-04 15:52:51

cool story bro

Pahgawk responds:

I initially wanted to make the file extension .bro but I mean, they're xml files, so I didn't want to be a liar or anything.


2013-05-28 14:19:01

Thanks, I am so using this!

Pahgawk responds:

awesome! :D