I still think this interface is cool looking, but I eventually grew tired of it. Plus, it's good for linking to some stuff, but not much else. The spiral concept was used again in the next version.
This is definitely has the tightest Flash movie I ever created. The animation is actually more complex than it looks, and involves quite a bit of Action Scripting. If you roll from one color hot-spot to the next quickly you will notice that the color transitions are never abrupt. The hardest part, however, was getting this thing to run smoothly (at a high-framerate) on computers with slow CPUs. I tried creating the spiral and its glow effect in Flash using vectors, but it was impossible to reproduce all the effects. I ended up crafting an ActionScript algorithm that made it efficient enough. I also used a method that allowed me to run the movie in low quality mode without any noticeable quality degradation. The end result is quite cool, but again, the interface itself is only good for linking to a few things so it did not cater well to lots of content.
If you have a slow connection you will notice a cool-looking preloader. Since many of you will only see it for a split-second, I made a separate page for it here.
This also has a very cool Flash movie as the main interface. The revolving graphics engine was obtained from an open-source Flash Experimentalism site, levitated.net. You might be wondering why I ditched this cool, revolving interface for the next version which is less fun and exciting. Basically, I had made a decision not to use pure-flash interfaces anymore. I grew out of that, much like people grew out of using <font> tags years ago or <blink> tags centuries ago.
This is basically the same as before, except now the core interface is an image map instead of a Flash movie. It looks less cool, but image maps don't require a plugin that can be disabled and aren't based on proprietary standards, unlike Flash. I will still use Flash for eye-candy, but never again for user-interface purposes. Web 2.0 standards have made it possible to achieve cool design effects without using animated vector graphics.
In late 2005, I realized that Etherice's content was growing out of control, and this version, along with any previous version, could not handle it. I needed something better... something more like a CMS... I needed 2.0 Chameleon!
The current version.