Graphics, Animation, and Interactivity With Flash 4.0

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9780766816954: Graphics, Animation, and Interactivity With Flash 4.0
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Covers the basics of Flash, including drawing, painting, and selections, followed by a series of chapters on each of the following: animation, symbols and libraries, sound, multilevel movies, and integration issues. Suited to introductory to intermediate level students, the volume includes a cross-platform CD-ROM of student files, a demonstration version of Flash 4.0, project files, and examples.

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Review:

Written as a textbook for courses taught by the author, Graphics, Animation & Interactivity with Flash 4.0 is unlike most how-to manuals. It provides in-depth instruction to Flash 4 while successfully capturing the feeling of being in a classroom with a knowledgeable professor.

In addition to over 50 lessons on the CD-ROM, the book provides extensive background information about the Internet, the nature of images on the Web, animation in general, and the advantages inherent in Flash 4 as a vector-based--as opposed to pixel-based--method of delivering graphics.

The lessons begin with the basic drawing and painting tools and an introduction to cell and keyframe animation, progressing later in the book to complex features like working with ActionScript, FlashScript, and JavaScript. The text in these chapters, as throughout the book, is so thorough that it serves as a primer on scripting and programming in general.

The teaching is cumulative: read the book from beginning to end rather than hopping around. Like a good syllabus, each chapter begins with a list of objectives and ends with a summary and list of resources "for further study." Also on the CD-ROM are many sample Flash animations (banners, logos, and lots of Web sites) and demo versions of Macromedia software, including Flash 4 and a demo copy of Vecta 3D for making 3-D Flash animations.

This book will not help with quick fixes. But anyone willing to go through every lesson carefully will be rewarded with a firm grasp of this powerful application. --Angelynn Grant

Topics covered: In-depth background and instruction on Flash 4, including lessons on the authoring environment, tools, and their modifiers; using layers, the timeline, symbols and libraries; keyframe animation, adding actions and audio, multilevel movies; testing and publishing animations, including optimizing file sizes; lessons on streaming and preloading, 3-D animations, transitional effects, interactivity, ActionScript, and FlashScript. CD-ROM includes over 100 support files for lessons, demo versions of Macromedia software (including Flash 4), and sample Flash animations and Web sites that use Flash.

About the Author:

James Mohler is an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Graphics at Purdue University. Professor Mohler has authored, co-authored, or contributed to over a dozen books related to computer graphics and computer applications. In addition to teaching, James serves as director for the Interactive Multimedia Development curriculum within the department.

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