Flash CS5. The Missing Manual by Chris Grover Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform. With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more. First released in under the name FutureSplash, it was a tool for creating web-based animations.
Flash has grown up with the World Wide Web and managed to carve out an important niche. In fact, there are a whole slew of programs that make use of Flash technology.
Just right-click or Control-click an image that you think might be Flash. Here are just some of the things you can do with Flash: Flash recognizes the most common image, video, and sound file formats. Once your artwork is in Flash, you can add motion, sound, and dazzling effects. Just ask the folks at JibJab. Multimedia websites. They include motion, video, background music, and above all, interactive objects. You can create eye-catching, attention-grabbing websites with Flash.
Web-based training courses, which often include a combination of text, drawings, animations, video clips, and voice-overs, are a natural fit for Flash. By hooking Flash up to a server on the back end, you can even present your audience with graded tests and up-to-the-minute product information. PowerPoint presentations are fine…up to a point. With Flash, you can create self-running presentations that are more creative and have a higher degree of interactivity. Customer service kiosks.
Many of the kiosks you see in stores and building lobbies use Flash to help customers find what they need. For example, photo kiosks walk customers through the process of transferring images from their digital cameras and ordering prints; kiosks in banks let customers withdraw funds, check interest rates, and make deposits.
Television and film effects. The Hollywood set has been known to use Flash to create visual effects for TV shows and even small feature films. But where the TV and film industry is seriously adopting Flash is on promotional websites, where designers can wed Flash graphics to scenes taken from their movies and shows to present powerful trailers, interactive tours of movie and show sets, and teasers.
Games and other programs. With support for runtime scripting, back-end data transfers, and interactive controls like buttons and text boxes, Flash has everything a programmer needs to create entertaining, professional-looking games.
Mobile Apps. With Flash CS5. The last two versions of Flash Professional introduced a slew of new features. CS4 added a more powerful, yet easy-to-use motion tween, complete with Motion Editor.
New 3-D capabilities opened up the world of motion, and IK Bones inverse kinematics made it easy for animators to link objects for realistic movement.
Adobe simplified the mysterious process of font embedding. IK bones were enhanced with a new Spring property. ActionScript coding was made easier with code snippets—cut and paste bits of code that are easy to drop into your document.
Code hinting provides an instant reference and tips on what to do next. Of course, all those features are covered in this book, along with the latest batch of enhancements. The development of mobile apps heads the list: App development for multiple devices. Flash enhancements make it easier to share files and scale projects for a variety of screen sizes. Built-in iPhone and iPad App Packager.
The much-publicized squabble between Apple and Adobe is at least partially resolved. Built-in Android app packager. Use your Flash skills to build apps for Android smartphones and tablets.
Test your apps immediately on devices connected by USB cables. Templates and code snippets for mobile devices. Adobe has added to the library of templates and code snippets making it easier to develop apps for iPhones, iPads, and Android mobile devices. Templates show how to use built-in accelerometers and geo-location features. Pin IK Bones.
Pinning locks IK bones to a specific position on the stage, making it much easier to create poses and control your models. Copying layers. Flash preserves structure and other details when copying layers between files and projects.
Symbol rasterization. The cache as bitmap feature converts vector art to bitmaps, increasing mobile device performance, CPU efficiency, and improving battery life.
Auto-save and file recovery. Like your favorite word processor, Flash now has a feature that automatically saves your documents. Incremental compilation. Flash is smarter when compiling publishing your document for testing. Animation ABCs Animators used to draw each and every frame by hand. Major animation houses employed whole armies of graphic artists, each charged with producing hundreds of drawings that represented a mere fraction of the finished work.
What we chuckled at for a scant few minutes took weeks and dozens of tired, cramped hands to produce. One mistake, one spilled drop of coffee, and these patient-as-Job types would have to grab fresh paper and start all over again. When everything was done, the animation would have to be put together—much like one of those flip books where you flip pages real fast to see a story play out—while it was being filmed by special cameras. With Flash on your computer, you have the equivalent of a design studio at your fingertips.
You provide the inspiration, and Flash can help you generate pro-quality animations and full-blown interactive applications. In addition, Flash lets you create and work with movie clips, which are something else entirely.
Unfortunately, that description is a bit long and unwieldy, so in this book, what you create using Flash is called an animation or an app. Flash in a Nutshell Say you work for a company that does custom auto refinishing. First assignment: You have the following idea for an animation: A voice-over informs your audience that your company has been in business for 20 years and offers the best prices in town.
But you also want each part of the car to be a clickable hotspot. Within each keyframe, you might choose to separate your artwork into different layers. Like the see-through plastic cels that professional animators used in the old days, layers let you create images separately and then stack them on top of one another to make a single composite image.
For example, you might choose to put the car on one layer, your company logo on a second layer, and your city-street background on a third layer. That way, you can edit and animate each layer independently, but when the animation plays, all three elements appear to be on one seamless layer.
Through a process called tweening, you tell Flash to fill in each and every frame between the keyframes to create the illusion of the junker turning slowly into a brand-new car. Flash carefully analyzes all the differences between the keyframes and does its best to build the interim frames, which you can then tweak or—if Flash gets it all wrong—redraw yourself. As you go along, you might decide to save a few of the elements you create for example, your company logo so you can reuse them later.
Without leaving the comfort of Flash, you can convert the editable. The scenario described above is pretty simple, but it covers the basic steps you need to take when creating any Flash animation. To click means to point the arrow cursor at something on the screen and then—without moving the cursor at all—to press and release the left clicker button on the mouse or laptop trackpad.
To double-click, of course, means to click twice in rapid succession, again without moving the cursor at all. And to drag means to move the cursor while pressing the left button continuously.
Keyboard shortcuts. Every time you take your hand off the keyboard to move the mouse, you lose time and potentially disrupt your creative flow. Choice is good. Flash frequently gives you several ways to trigger a particular command—by choosing a menu command, or by clicking a toolbar button, or by pressing a key combination, for example. Some people prefer the speed of keyboard shortcuts; others like the satisfaction of a visual command array available in menus or toolbars.
This book lists all the alternatives, but by no means are you expected to memorize all of them. About This Book Despite the many improvements in software over the years, one feature has grown consistently worse: At times, the terse electronic help screens assume you already understand the discussion at hand and hurriedly skip over important topics that require an in-depth presentation.
Engineers often add technically sophisticated features to a program because they can, not because you need them. The purpose of this book, then, is to serve as the manual that should have been in the box. Note This book periodically recommends other books, covering topics that might interest Flash designers and developers. The Missing Manual is designed for readers of every skill level, except the super-advanced programmer.
The primary discussions are written for advanced-beginner or intermediate computer users. They offer more technical tips, tricks, and shortcuts for the experienced Flash fan. The Design Time boxes explain the art of effective multimedia design.
030; in other words, both the analysis of absolute and relative mixing costs show the same phenomenon. Experiment 2 In Experiment 1, we found that men's and women's performance differed in a computer-based task measuring the capacity to rapidly switch between different tasks.
One of the difficulties with computer-based laboratory tasks is their limited ecological validity. Experiment 2 aimed to create a multi-tasking situation in a "real-life" context that included standardized neurocognitive tests.
The approach of this experiment is based on tasks common in cognitive neuropsychology.