Beyond “Flashturbation”

From time to time I’ve railed against poorly conceived, distracting, and pointless Flash animations on Web sites (“Flashturbation”).

Well, one place where Flash does make a lot of sense is instructional materials, like origami instructions. Last night I was teaching a six-year-old friend of mine how to fold some simple origami models, following diagrams in a very basic book. I quickly realized that that the static diagrams didn’t fully convey the motions of making the folds. Once she could see me make a fold, see the motion, she’d get it.

On the Oriland Origami site, I found a collection of simple but highly effective Flash animations that explain basic origami folds. It’s worth checking out, to remind yourself that animation can indeed be valuable content. It doesn’t even need to be fancy or slick to work well.

Several designers and bloggers also have taken Flashturbation to task for its many crimes. Here are a couple of my favorite rants on the topic from Media Savvy and Ozone Asylum.

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