Flash Killer – Raphaël – JavaScript Library

7 07 2009

Raphaël LogoI have been having too much fun with the Raphaël Vector JavaScript Library.  Previously I have posted about Processing and ProcessingJS and I think they both are great for data visualization and art.  I have been a bit hesitant to use them for more standard web applications.  The original Processing Language is Java based, so it must load an applet.  The Processing JS has limiations on Internet Explorer (really Microsoft’s gap).  Similar arguments hold true for Flash and Silverlight technologies that require downloads, plug-ins, and load times.  Raphaël has no such limitations… no plugins, works on all browsers and to top it off it is quick.

Raphaël Demos

It is worthwhile to visit the Raphaël Project Home Page to understand what it’s creator Dmitry Baranovskiy has given the world in a 120kb package.  There is basic image movement, manipulation, lots of animation and more.  For simple projects it can really take the place of tools like Flash.  One of the more sophisticated examples I came across was Space Invaders.

There are some other options out there, and it may be worthwhile to check out how they compare.  A good starting list is at http://sixrevisions.com/javascript/10-impressive-javascript-animation-frameworks/

Now I am off to work on my Raphaël Tag Cloud.

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