By Adam Berenstain Macworld.com | on September 13, 2011
Pros: Simple, powerful animation controls, no coding required
Cons: Limited design tools
Like Adobe Edge, Hype is about creating interactive HTML5 animations without coding. Hype had reached version 1.0.4 at press time, and functionality-wise it’s generations beyond the first preview of Edge, but its limited design tools and inflexible interface do not help in building complex projects.
Hype projects consist of one or more scenes which function like slides in a PowerPoint presentation. Scenes can contain text, images, videos and other elements, although importing audio files isn’t yet supported.
It’s easy to precisely arrange and customise elements thanks to snap-to guides and auto-alignment commands. Hype’s Inspector lets you fine-tune properties while alerting you to potential browser incompatibilities.
Unfortunately Hype’s design tools lack many familiar features. Elements cannot be locked in place or grouped, and squares are the only built-in shapes available to add to scenes (although they can be tweaked to form rules or circles). There are no contextual menus or masking tools, and there is no way to enlarge or reduce your workspace view.
Tumult Hype’s interface doesn’t scale, making using it on a laptop very fiddly
The animation controls are more impressive. Double-clicking animations lets you enter exact keyframe start times, set the duration of an animation durations and choose whether it eases in or out as it plays.
Managing multiple animations in the timeline can be difficult with numerous elements, however. Element properties appear in a list beside the timeline, and seeing many of them together requires a large screen. Elements can be dragged closer to each other in the list for easier comparison, but this also affects whether they appear above or beneath other elements in the scene.
Despite its limitations, Tumult Hype makes it easy to create HTML5 web animations such as ads – but little else at present.