Flash Professional CS5 Bible - PDF

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Flash Professional CS5 Bible by Todd Perkins

In 1997, Macromedia acquired a small Web graphics program, FutureSplash, from a company named FutureWave. FutureSplash was a quirky little program with the astounding capability to generate compact, vector-based graphics and animations for delivery over the Web. With Macromedia’s embrace, Flash blossomed. In 2005, Adobe Systems, Inc. acquired Macromedia and, in three short years, has successfully integrated Flash into their family of powerhouse graphics, video, and design software. Not only has the Flash platform obtained ubiquity, but Flash content is now more easily created across a wide range of professional software applications. The Flash Player plug-in ships with most major browsers and operating systems. Flash graphics appear not only all over the Web, but also on television and movie screens, on phones, on kiosks, and even in art galleries.

As the Web-surfing public and the development community have continued to demand more of Flash, Adobe has delivered. After Creative Suite 3 was released, Adobe went out into the world and sat with people using its programs to see what they used, what they needed, and how the next generation of Creative Suite tools could support daily workflow and specialize tasks more effectively. The result is a release that promotes expressiveness and enhances efficiency while encouraging best practices in development — a functional and an inspiring combination that has earned rave reviews from visual designers and code-oriented developers at all levels.

The Flash CS5 Professional interface is consistent with other Creative Suite 5 (CS5) products; it has tool options and other editing features contained in streamlined panels and lots of important changes to the authoring environment. The Mac interface is nearly 100 percent identical to the Windows interface, with support for docked panels, tabbed panels, and enhancements to the coding environments in Flash CS5 and Dreamweaver CS5.

Flash movies can communicate directly with server-side scripts and programs, using standard URL-encoded variables, XML-formatted structures, Web services, or powerhouse data transfers from Flash Remoting–enabled servers. Sounds can be imported and exported as MP3 audio for high-quality music on the Web at the smallest file sizes. Flash Player 10 supports nearly every Web file format you’ll ever come across. Loading of JPEG, PNG, GIF, MP3, FLV, AAC, and H.264 video content streamlines production and maintenance of dynamic high-volume media sites. The updated FLVPlayback component and the addition of custom tools, custom effects, and behaviors offer Flash users of all skill levels some exciting possibilities. Evidence of the dominance of the Flash format can be found in the wide range of third-party developers creating applications that output to the Flash movie format (.swf files). Flash has fulfilled its promise of becoming the central application for generating interactive content for delivery on the Web; the potential only seems to expand as more developers tap into the data-handling power of Flash and its increasingly sophisticated graphics capabilities as it continues to grow beyond the computer screen.

Is there any other Flash book for you?

Adobe Flash CS5 Professional Bible is the most comprehensive and exhaustive reference on Flash. It helps you get started on your first day with the program and will still be a valuable resource when you’ve attained mastery of the program. When you’re looking for clues on how to integrate Flash with other programs so that you can deliver unique and compelling content in the Flash format, you’ll know where to turn. We’ve put significant effort into this edition, updating all ActionScript content to use ActionScript 3.0, the most recent version of the ActionScript language available in Flash Player 9 or higher.

Flash is not just a single tool. You can think of Flash as a multitasking application. It’s an illustration program, an image/sound/video editor, an animation machine, and a scripting engine, all rolled into one. In this book, we look at each of these uses of Flash and explain how all the features work together.

To address advanced scripting topics and more server-side development issues, Roger Braunstein, Mims Wright, Josh Noble, and Joey Lott have written the ActionScript 3 Bible (Wiley, 2007) to fully address advanced use of the ActionScript 3.0 scripting language. If you’re already adept at creating animation and basic interactive interfaces in Flash and you want to expand your knowledge of more complex coding techniques, you may want to compare the table of contents in this book with that of ActionScript Bible to determine which book covers the topics you’re most interested in.



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