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-- by James E. Powell
Ulead Systems' GIF Animator 1.2 is a good way for graphics novices to add pizzazz to their Web pages. The simple tool is aimed at those who want to build animated GIF files with minimal graphics knowledge.
We tested GIF Animator by choosing the Add Banner Text option. The program quickly created a banner with scrolling text. We then entered the text, specified font, shadow and transparency preferences when prompted; and selected an animation option (animated text can scroll into the banner from any of four different directions)
We also specified animation quality, which ranged from a five-frame Worst to 40-frame Best. In addition, you can specify a custom value. On the split screen, select a frame number to preview and edit an image.
GIF Animator's redundancy analyzer and color analyzer create small files that download quickly. The package makes it easy to add graphic images (JPEG, BMP, TIFF, TGA, PCX, PICT or PSD) to the animation. It automatically inserted each of the imported file's frames into the test banner. The color animator lets you select up to 32 colors to cycle through, and the program creates a single frame for each color selected. The image changes its red component to yellow, then blue and back to red, and so on, as specified.
GIF Animator 1.2 can also apply flipping and rotating cube effects to an image.
This kit is perfect for the uninitiated. Web graphics professionals in search of amazing shortcuts to Web animations should probably look elsewhere.