Archive for the ‘Tools’ Category

Altura – Pseudo Interactive Storytelling Site Launches

January 4, 2012

Altura at is a Web / Mobile site that lets people partake and write pseudo interactive stories in a fun and free manner.

We will not give away exactly how it works until you try it!  Suffice it to say, it is another interactive storytelling feature from creator Dan Zen – to add to the long list of interactive fiction environments:

Interactive Storytelling GAMES
Underwater Multi-user Sci-Fi Game
Save Future Earth With This Online Remote Control!
Zany Mysteries from the Mind of the Moustache!
Save thousands shrunk in a bottle!
Fly your blimp with all your friends!
Social Interactive Storytelling
Turn On, Jack In and Hang Out
Change sent mail after it is read
Spiral Encode Messages To Friends
Atmospheric Forums
Get Spied On!
Encouragement for blog comments
Interactive Storytelling EXPERIENCES
Whisper Words That Have Never Been Said
Philosophical Focus
Fly a Jet Pack Through a Million Clouds!
The Game You Can Only Play Once!
Ride the Prediction Train Into the Future
Interactive Storytelling APPS
Tell stories through Facebook status lines!
Predict-a-Poll Web 2.0 Site!
Say What you See Tool!
Cool Vlogging Tool
Scrolling Picture Viewer


Swoodle, Wavy, Tada!

November 12, 2011

Dan Zen has just launched three mobile apps on iOS, Android and Playbook. The apps were made efficiently with Adobe Flash and Flash Builder. Just search the stores for the apps by Dan Zen.

Swoodle Mobile App by Dan Zen TITLE: SWOODLE

BUILD: 2 Nights

DESC: Swoodle to hone your finger tai chi!

Wavy Mobile app by Dan Zen TITLE: WAVY!

BUILD: 1 Night

DESC: Wave your device to make sounds!

Tada! Mobile App by Dan Zen TITLE: TADA!

BUILD: 10 Nights

DESC: Decision and Faves tool.

The apps were uploaded to the three stores in one hour. This is amazing cross device efficiency from Adobe Flash and Flash Builder.

Dan Zen is the creator of TOUCHY the mobile app where players try to touch each others’ devices.

Touchy - Mobile Game by Dan Zen

Tapoll Gets Bigger!

August 27, 2011

Tapoll - Polls with a twist of foreplay

Tapoll at has received over 100,000 views.  In honor, we have made it bigger!  We took the 980 pixel width of Facebook, Google+. flickr, etc. to make Tapoll easier to see and operate!


Tapoll polls have a unique twist:

Tapoll lets you predict and vote on a poll at the same time.

The results then show the predictions which often vary quite a bit from the actual votes.  Using the graph feature, you can see over and under predictions as well as the percent of user who voted for their own prediction.  This is often in the 50% range.


Just recently, we added share buttons for Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

Sharing Tapoll Polls on Facebook, Twitter and Google+


The top left corner is redesigned and now includes a link to a video demo on YouTube.
Tapoll Demo Video on YouTube


On the right hand side you will see a video ad for the Touchy game at  It shows up every once in a while and relates the ad to the keywords of the poll you are viewing.

Interactive Video Ad for Tapoll featuring Content Relevant Video


Tapoll also shows related news and social links in the inspiration column at right.  If you press the TAPOLL button next to any of these, it will start you off creating a poll with this link, picture, video, etc. cited as a reference.  You can also make a poll based on another Tapoll poll as well using the TAPOLL button under any poll.

Social Media Mash Up of Relevant content from Flickr, YouTube, Digg, Delicious, Amazon

Please come on by and share a few polls on your social sites!


TADA! Make Decisions or Discover Your True Favourites With the TADA! Mobile App for Android and Playbook

March 27, 2011

Tada! Free App for mobile Android and Playbook

A few taps and Tada! Decision!

Quickly and easily rank options with Tada! Enter items to rank like sites, apps, people, food and rate them on factors such as usability, fun, nose, taste, etc. When you are done rating press to reveal the results!

Save multiple files, do secret rankings, and get tips if you are stuck. Helps solve dilemmas in a real way as opposed to a random way.  A few presses and Tada!

Available on the Android Market and soon for Playbook and iPad.

Have fun!  Tada! was used to come up with the name for the product.


Opartica II TUNNEL Launches with 3D Op Art Creation and Animation

February 6, 2011

Opartica II TUNNEL the online op art making tool where you create and fly through 3D optical art has launched on the Dan Zen site!

Please check out the Opartica Facebook page for postings and discussion. “Likes” are greatly appreciated!

Opartica II makes use of HummingBird the open source Parallax code for Flash written by Inventor, Dan Zen, and part of the Flash Feathers series of advanced interfaces.

Opartica II lets you create a wide variety of op art in two basic formats, tiled with rows and columns and radial with segments.  There are a variety of shapes including free form curves.  Layers, backgrounds, distances between layers and a unique fill mode and more can be controlled from the left hand panel.

You can save works (Tunnels) with the right hand panel.  You can automate a slide show through your Tunnels and animate in 3D at various speed settings.  There is an import and export feature to share and save Tunnels.

The original Opartica was launched in 2005 and has received over 200,000 views.  It is still available at the bottom of the Opartica site.

Dan Zen used the current Opartica was used to create hundreds of Op Art holiday cards which can be viewed on Flickr at the collection – perhaps one of the largest collection of hand made Op Art, shows the diversity available in Opartica.  Please have fun exploring!


Hummingbird Flash being used for Opartica II

December 3, 2010

Tunnel_0000_Layer 18

Hummingbird is being used to create Opartica II code named Tunnel. Tilator III might also be on the way or perhaps they will merge. The originals are at and

Hummingbird is the Flash Parallax open source ActionScript class. It lets you do those cool 3D looking effects where layers move at different depths. Hummingbird is part of the Flash Feathers Advanced Interfaces at from inventor Dan Zen.

– 2010 –

Snipisode – Agency Zen Launches First Facebook Status Story Telling Application

February 26, 2010
Snipisode Facebook Status Storytelling App

Snipisode - Facebook Status Storytelling Application

Snipisode lets you schedule status posts as episodes of a story or feature – Snipisodes!

There are status schedulers out there but they are quite tedious to use.  Snipisode lets you type or paste in a whole story and then with a click of a button snip up the story either by line or by periods (? and ! too).  Then you choose a time either daily or every two days and that’s it!

The story will unfold on your status line.  People can click the Full Story link by the status to see all your status posts for the story including comments on one page.

A live Snipisode Post

Snips and schedules!

Here is a YouTube video showing the process in action.  So come on in and try it out!  Please let us know what you think.

Agency Zen has also created The Party and Stick Aliens for facebook.

Party Application on Facebook - see your friends

Stick Aliens on facebook

Tapoll – Now You Choose Which Polls Go On the Front Page!

April 20, 2008

Tapoll - Put your Poll on Front

Tapoll is the site where you get to predict a poll as you vote. Now, you can decide on which polls go on the front page. That is, until someone else decides on a different poll.

Visit Tapoll the Predict-a-poll site

To view polls you can choose a poll topic at left, choose the latest 20 polls, or see all topics. Once you choose a poll, you can predict and vote on the poll. Just above the poll is a link that says front. Click this link and confirm that you want the poll on the front and it will be placed on the front page of Tapoll.

See the YouTube video showing a brief demonstration of Tapoll

Have fun!

Interactive Op Art – Opartica

April 8, 2008

Opartica Op Ar Tool

Just making sure that anyone searching online for interactive op art tool will find Opartica at Opartica is a fully interactive optical art maker that lets you spin and overlap shapes like rays, concentric circles and squares, zig zags, and spirals. You can change color and centers. It was built some time ago as a first Flash feature in 2001.  Still works and gets lots of hits etc.

Falcon – Adobe Flash 9 AS3 Data Class

February 23, 2008

Falcon - Adobe Flash 9 AS3 Data Class Replaces URLVariables, URLRequest, URLRequestMethod, URLLoader and URLLoaderDataFormat

Have you ever wondered how social network sites are built like facebook, YouTube, flickr, MySpace, etc. and sites like Ebay, Amazon, any forums, wikis, blogs, etc.? There is a front end that you see and a back end that sits on a server. To be able to share data and make elegant use of the Internet as a medium, we have to be able to pass data (in variable or XML or JSON, etc. format) from the front end to the back end and back again.

Falcon is an Adobe Flash custom class that lets you send and receive variables, text, XML or binary data. You can load XML or text from a file or send and receive variables or XML to and from a server script like PHP and then on to a database like MySQL. Falcon automatically makes a DataProvider if your variables are sequential so that it is easy to make a DataGrid (table in Flash).

The Flash scripting language, ActionScript 3.0 is now a complete Object Oriented Programming language that follows the ECMAScript standard as does JavaScript. In doing so, the language has become very internally consistent. For this consistency to work, the former classes (properties and functions) have been broken down into smaller or more precise classes. This means that to handle data, ActionScript 3 now has five classes that are used to load even just one variable! These are URLVariables, URLRequest, URLRequestMethod, URLLoader and URLLoaderDataFormat. This results in fifteen lines of code.

Falcon wraps or combines these native AS3 classes into one class. The class uses three active lines of code. This simplification makes it easier for designers and developers to provide important functionality of sharing information.

As an inventor of social games, tools and environments, I realize the importance of passing data to the server so that it can be shared. This technique is used in the following Darth Detector, Changing Mail, Chatnap, Baron Digbody’s Castle, Lady With Brooch, Danisms, Dens, Dan Zen Garden, Gorgolon, Grim Reaper’s Age Guesser, Gycopo, Hip Cats, Kula Pu Idol, Moustache Mysteries, Opartica, Pagoda Of Games, Password Paradox, Tapoll, Prediction Train, Rich Deck, Salamander, Save Earth, Spirogram, Spy-mail, Telepathy, Teleporters, Tilator, Tower Of Babel, Web Ouija, Utopia, Wannaget, Word Warp, Yesumno, Zen Deck, Zen Dots, Zen Mix, Zen Motto, Zen Pass, and Zen Picture Pan Zoom.


Light Show for Christmas Psychedelic Band

November 5, 2007


I have been working on a tool in Flash to put shapes that move to music on top of pictures and apply blend modes and filters – I hope to launch it in the Spring.

One of the filters that I am experimenting with is the displacement filter. This light show comes from my experimentations and was used as a light show for the psychedelic band, Christmas / Reign Ghost from the 70’s and late 60’s at Sneaky Dees this weekend. FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS at the bottom of the show to see different pictures:

My friend Gaven Dianda, who was in thee Gnostics and a few other bands with me is in a band called Saffron Sect and they played backup to Bob Bryden for the show. He played some really nice guitar and the crowd loved it.

Here is a link to a YouTube video of the show. The sound was great but the sound in the recording is distorted. I was manning the show so I could not take much video and it is just with my little camera.

It was a cool show!

Comments are like the Beach…

June 5, 2007

CommentRight comment care tool

For many content creators, like Bloggers, money means nothing – all it takes is a few nice comments and they get all charged up to make another post or feature, etc. I know that when I wonder if it is all worth it, I take a look at the thousands of comments on the Dan Zen garden and they tell me, I’ve made a difference. On the blogs however, I seldom get a comment – and if I do, it is spam. This has prompted the making of a tool that will let visitors know that their comments are greatly appreciated. So please, if you have a blog, consider using CommentRight.

CommentRight comment care tool

CommentRight lets you select from a series of image prompts that you would like to tell your visitors with respect to leaving comments. Once you have selected, you can get the image code to paste into your blog post. Because it is just an image tag, it can be used anywhere such as in WordPress, Blogger or MySpace. The image tag will show a different one of your selected images each time.

CommentRight is free and easy – please let others know and please click on any CommentRight banner in this post to leave a comment as to what you think about CommentRight. It would be a helpful indication that CommentRight works. The C in a box to the right of the banner links through to the CommentRight site.

CommentRight comment care tool

Technology Tapoll Predict-a-Poll Blog Launched

March 3, 2007


Tapoll, the predict-a-poll site, now has a blog that concentrates on the technology polls posted on the site.

Blogger was chosen because of its ability to embed JavaScript which is necessary for remote Tapoll polls.

Technology was chosen because these seem to be doing well and I can easily create polls in this category. If anyone else is interested in writing for Tapoll or any other area of Dan Zen, please contact us.

Tapoll and Zen Mix at Museum of Modern Betas

October 6, 2006


Both Tapoll – the predict-a-poll site at and Zen Mix – the vlogging tool at have been added to the Museum of Modern Betas at

MoMB is a neat site that lists the new wave of Web 2.0 sites and their popularity based on bookmarks. Click here if you would like to add Tapoll or Zen Mix to

Tapoll, the predict-a-poll Web 2.0 site, lets you relate polls to digg, YouTube, flickr,

September 5, 2006

Tapoll is a new Web 2.0 site that lets you share polls. And these are not just any polls – they are predict-a-polls where you can predict and vote on the poll at the same time.

“The predict-a-poll feature adds an inventive twist to the traditional poll and can reveal whether you are a good predictor as well as if you yourself are predictable” says Dan Zen, inventor of Tapoll.

The Tapoll site also lets you view items from other popular Web 2.0 sites like Flickr, YouTube, and digg that relate to the poll to inspire poll creation. You can click the Tapoll icon next to an inspirational item to make a poll that refers to that item. Creators can then drive traffic to the poll by placing a link to the poll in the comment area of the inspirational site.

Dan Zen explains, “For instance, I was answering a poll on the Grim Reaper, and under the YouTube feed there was a link to a prank where a live Grim Reaper was superimposed onto a security video in a shop so it showed up behind people in line. After watching the video, I clicked the Tapoll button next to the link and created a poll with a reference to this video. The poll asks, in a sense, whether it is ethical to do such an extreme albeit funny prank.

To get more people to take this poll, could click the link at the top of the poll to find out the URL to the poll. Then I would copy this URL with the message “this inspired a Tapoll poll” into the comment area of the Grim Reaper video on YouTube. YouTube might have an issue with URLs in comments but you can just say”this inspired a predict-a-poll at Tapoll com”.


Tapoll, lets you embed polls on your site such as mySpace and Blogger – you can also chose to make the poll private.

A graph feature is available that shows the largest over prediction and under prediction as well as the closest prediction. A percentage of voters who voted for the same option they predicted is also provided.

The Tapoll site is built with DHTML – dynamic HTML to expand areas for more information. AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) is used to bring in the Web 2.0 site feeds and handle sharing of polls.

The site was built by Mad Inventor Dan Zen at who recently launched Zen Mix at a vlogging tool that lets you put Web video over a picture and apply cool blend modes.

Zen Mix Poised to Revolutionize Vlogging

July 2, 2006

Mad Inventor, Dan Zen, has just launched Zen Mix a free vlogging tool. A vlog or video log is an extension of blogging where instead of a text and picture post you have a video post.

Zen Mix at takes this one step further by allowing you to put Web video on top of a Web picture and apply cool blend effects all in seconds for free. This makes your vlog look much more interesting than just a talking head.

Zen Mix also features Mash technology to allow you to string mixes together by specifying the file names in the URL. You can use squiggly braces to randomize these, square brackets to pick a random mix from any within and round brackets to force sequence. Nested combinations of these work as well making the feature very powerful.

On Zen Mix there is an introduction mash, a features and error mash and a love mash showing mixes of people who dig Zen Mix.

The introduction mash shows how you can take a $200 digital camera and easily make a Zen Mix file in a couple minutes. You host your video at and your picture at and simple put the URLs into Zen Mix, size and position and apply effects. All this is done freely and very quickly online.

It should be noted that the Zen Mix site is quite possibly the first site to have only video content including the privacy message, error messages, promotional and instructional material, etc.

Dan Zen will be posting Zen Mix vlogs on his vlogging site at and you can read more about vlogging at

Best of luck and send us a love mash!

Zen Alarm – Play Any MP3

December 16, 2005

Zen Alarm is an alarm clock that comes with two alarm sounds – a gong and a special message. But, users can type any MP3 and it will play it as the alarm – pretty cool huh?

Go to the site, read the quick instructions and bookmark your alarm – or download a desktop version…

The link to put a Zen Alarm on your Google home page is here:

ZEN ALARM 2.0 just launched with an added feature to allow you to pop up a Web site after a certain amount of time. Also, the alarm does not go off until you select a type of alarm.

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