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Adobe Fireworks CS6

Adobe's vector and bitmap editor can now share more information with other CS applications

by Mike Williams

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License: Trial Software
Operating Systems: Mac OS X, Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows Vista (32 bit), Windows Vista (64 bit), Windows XP

1GB free hard drive space, 1280x1024 display

Languages: English
Software Cost: $299 (Windows) $299 (Mac)
Date Updated: 07 May 2012
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Downloads To Date: 7216
Developer: Adobe
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Adobe Fireworks CS6
Capable bitmap and vector graphics editor

Adobe Fireworks CS6 is a capable bitmap and vector graphics editor with plenty of interesting features.

The program has always been a great design tool, and this edition takes another step forward with some very smart CSS support. Suppose you've designed some custom shape which you'd like to the background to a little web text, for instance: rectangle, nicely rounded corners, your choice of colours, and so on. In the past you might have exported an image, but now you can simply select the CSS Properties panel and you'll see the CSS code necessary to create that shape: just copy and paste it into Dreamweaver (or any other suitable tool) and you'll be ready to go.

And this isn't only for simple designs. They can become quite complex, with gradients, drop shadows and other effects: very interesting.

Otherwise the CS6 New Features list seems a little short, although it does at least contain some welcome additions. So, as with all the CS6 tools, a focus on performance sees faster redraws on OS X, while enhanced memory management supports files up to 4x larger on 64-bit Windows systems. And an improved colour UI sees you able to more easily select and change colours, or switch between solid, gradient and pattern colour effects.

The new support for creating or editing jQuery Mobile themes will be particularly welcome for anyone creating mobile websites and apps.

And Adobe also say Fireworks CS6 now allows you to "access the API to generate extensions". We've not looked at this in detail yet, but anything which allows users to create more powerful extensions sounds like a good idea to us.

Please note, the file you're downloading here is Adobe's Download Manager. You'll need to install this, then instruct it to download and install Fireworks CS6 (including creating an Adobe ID if you don't have one already, though this can be done from within the program).


The extra speed and UI improvements are welcome, and the CSS and jQuery Mobile support will be very useful for some, but otherwise Fireworks CS6 isn't the most substantial of upgrades. Be sure to check out the trial version before you buy.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

WhatsApp Messenger 2.12.11

Free Full Commercial Software

WhatsApp Messenger is the world's most popular instant messaging app for smartphones.

You can use it to send and receive text and voice messages, photos, videos, even call your friends in other countries, and because it uses your phone's internet connection it might not cost you anything at all (depending on whether you'll pay data charges).

It's easy to set up and use. There's no need to create and remember new account names or pins because it works with your phone number, and uses your regular address book to find and connect you with friends who use WhatsApp already.

You can talk one-to-one or in group chats, and because you're always logged in there's no way to miss messages. Even if your phone is turned off, WhatsApp will save your messages and display them as soon as you're back online.

There's plenty more (location sharing, contact exchange, message broadcasting) and the app is free for a year, currently $0.99/ year afterwards.

Version 2.12.11 brings:

• Links that you share or receive will now include a rich preview. When sending a link, you have the option to not include a rich preview.
• Additional 3D Touch features: You can now quickly Peek and Pop chats.
• Redesigned Settings tab. 
• You can now view all your starred messages across all your chats in Settings — Starred Messages.