Friday, October 29, 2010

Cartoon: I Want to Start a Small Business

I spent the last few evenings testing some new web based applications for creating cartoons. I spent some time with both xtranormal.com and GoAnimate.com. I found xtranormal.com to be a bit easier to get the hang of and create a first cartoon. Both provide just one basic set of characters and a background for basic, no pay access. Both systems require budding cartoonists to purchase "points" to access additional characters and background sets.

Here's the final cut of my xtranormal.com cartoon "I Want to Start a Small Business."

As there is little documentation on how to best use the interface, here's a few hard learned tips for using xtranormal.com:

1. Don't use magicam if you want to control the camera. I accidentally turned on magicam and was driving myself crazy trying to figure out why after a few seconds, the camera seemed to wander and switch around. Ensure the magicam button is greyed out before previewing or publishing.

2. Break up long text into smaller boxes. The artificial voice reads very fast. Breaking up your text into smaller boxes seems to result in a slower dialog.

3. Put spaces between the numbers in telephone numbers. A telephone number I was promoting was read too fast. Adding a space slowed the pace and resulted in better enunciation.

4. Use " dot " instead of a period in URLs. Using the word dot with a leading and trailing space resulted in a more intelligible URL.

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