Macromedia Brings Fireworks To Mac OS X With Fireworks MX

Macromedia has announced Fireworks MX, the newest version of the companyis flagship Web graphics development app. The new version includes new features for creating JavaScript images (rollovers, pop-up menus, and the like), in addition to new ways to work with XML and other dynamically driven images. Fireworks MX is part of the companyis new Studio MX product suite, also announced today. More importantly, Fireworks MX is the first version of that product to run on Mac OS X. From Macromedia:

Macromedia®, Inc. today announced Macromedia Fireworks® MX, the easiest way to create, optimize, and export interactive graphics in a single, web-centric environment. Fireworks MX is a key component in Macromedia Studio MX (announced today, see separate release), which combines the latest versions of market-leading Macromedia tools to provide developers with a streamlined, integrated product family focused on increasing developer productivity and return on investment. A preview release of Fireworks MX is immediately available for download.

Fireworks MX delivers a streamlined environment for creating everything from simple graphical buttons to sophisticated rollover effects. The new version simplifies navigation creation with easier pop-up menu creation and even more control. Users can deliver both horizontal and vertical JavaScript pop-up menus that work with tabbed button bar appearances and other creative layouts, and pop-up menu attributes are all customizable including spacing, borders, and color shading. Wizards enable users to quickly create sophisticated web navigation by automatically generating the graphics and JavaScript.

Fireworks MX can automatically generate data-driven graphics by dynamically linking to XML content as well as automate repetitive graphics creation by connecting a graphic file with variables to an XML file. Fireworks MX also features support for XHTML and accessibility, through the ability to ensure the accompanying XHTML is Section 508 compliant. Fireworks MX features Roundtrip XHTML with Macromedia Dreamweaver MX.

The product also simplifies the intelligent exporting of graphics and HTML to leading applications with a single click, automatically outputting the specific file formats required for Macromedia Flash MX, Dreamweaver MX, Macromedia FreeHand, Macromedia Director, and third-party products.

You can find more information on the new version of Fireworks at Macromediais Web site. Fireworks is priced at US$299, and the company is offering upgrades for "previous versions of Fireworks" for US$149. Macromedia says that the product should ship in May, with versions in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, and Swedish to be "available at a later date."