20 February 2008

How to do a Semi-Transparent Splash screen

Well this was one thing that I had thought a lot about. In college when I was totally unaware of the alpha blending technology. So I wondered how the ppl would have had got hold of it. I had this weird idea of having a pixel taken from background and using that to make us believe that its semi-transparent. When I learned about Alpha Blending I thought my idea was really childish. I should have thought beyond. Then came the question of how to make the splash screen transparent. Well as many of u might be knowing, splash screens are bmp images by default. You cannot have any special effect using them. But then I had an idea, how about taking a snapshot of the current screen and then generating a splash bmp giving a nice semi-transparency. This was one among the many ideas that bumped by head at some point of time. 

Coming back to today. We all must have used the Windows Live Writer or other applications. If u havnt then give them a try. This application has a nice splash screen which is semi-transparent. I wondered if there is some API being used for this purpose. But did not find anything. But one day I saw something which cleared up all my doubts.

Windows Live Writer Splash screen

Now I realized what happened. I guess someone else too had a similar idea for having semi-transparent splash screen. If u look at the splash image, its clear that the background is made up of a screen which I had used sometime back. The new screen is not in the semi-transparent or transparent region. Even the borders do not make up for the current background. So I feel my ideas has been implemented. I dont know folks who wrote this program, probably they can give a much better idea. But I am confident that this has been done using my idea. If you think its done via something else, please let me know.

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