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You simply need a set of scripts (or plug-ins) that modify and then render a specific template to a watch folder where it is then encoded and streamed to the client. Nothing magic, just a lot of work and of course not runtime.
Thank you for your feedback.
So essentially there would be a After Effects project template on a server waiting for certain input data. Then it would be rendered and .flv encoded and sent to the video player.
Do I have that right?
This could be a problem given the render time, as my client wants the video shown soon after user data in inputted. But may be a solution for a more rich experience, not generated at run-time.
Are there any plugins or specific scripts you can point me to?
Also, regarding flash, if I were to export cue point data for these custom feilds, does flash support any additional effects... such as blur, opacity etc. That can be placed within the .flv metadata?
Yes, that's basically how it would work. I'm sure you can find enough sample scripts on sites like AEScripts and AEnhancers dealing with anything from setting up the render queue to updating text layers, but of course you'd have to adapt it to your needs. Flash does support a few text styles like drop shadows, outer glow, Gaussian blur etc. and of course normal blending modes and opacity animation, but they only make sense if you can use hardware acceleration client-side. Even then there are limitations in rendering them over video and of course it will consume a lot of performance. Also they work and look differently from the same PS/ AE effects/ styles. And you'd also have to deal with things like font usage and rendering...