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Flash CS4: The Missing Manual


Unlock the power of Flash and bring gorgeous animations to life onscreen. It's easy with Flash CS4: The Missing Manual. You'll start creating animations in the first chapter, and will learn to produce effective, well-planned visuals that get your message across. This entertaining new edition includes a complete primer on animation, a guided tour of the program's tools, lots of new illustrations, and more details on working with video. Beginners will learn to use the software in no time, and experienced Flash ...

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Flash CS4: The Missing Manual: The Missing Manual

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Unlock the power of Flash and bring gorgeous animations to life onscreen. It's easy with Flash CS4: The Missing Manual. You'll start creating animations in the first chapter, and will learn to produce effective, well-planned visuals that get your message across. This entertaining new edition includes a complete primer on animation, a guided tour of the program's tools, lots of new illustrations, and more details on working with video. Beginners will learn to use the software in no time, and experienced Flash designers will improve their skills.

Expanded and revised to cover the new version of Flash, every chapter in this book provides step-by-step tutorials to help you:

  • Learn to draw objects, animate them, and integrate your own audio and video files
  • Add interactivity, use special effects, learn morphing, and much more
  • Check your work with the book's online example files and completed animations
  • Discover new Flash toolkits and features such as Frameless Animation
  • Use every timesaving aspect of Flash CS4, such as Library objects and Symbols
  • Learn how to automate your drawings and animations with ActionScript 3.0

With this book, absolutely no programming is necessary to get started with Flash CS4. Flash CS4: The Missing Manual explains in jargon-free English exactly what you need to know to use Flash effectively, while avoiding common pitfalls, right from the start.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596522940
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/3/2008
  • Series: Missing Manual Series
  • Edition description: Third Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 752
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Christopher Grover lives in Fairfax, California with his wife and two daughters. Chris received degrees in Creative Writing and Film from Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts. He's worked as a technical writer, advertising copywriter and product publicist for more than 25 years. His freelance articles have been published in a variety of magazines from Fine Homebuilding to CD-ROM World. Chris's latest project is launching Bolinas Road Creative, an agency that helps small businesses promote their products and services. He's also the author of "Word 2007: The Missing Manual" and "Word 2007 for Starters: The Missing Manual."

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Table of Contents

The Missing Credits;
About the Author;
About the Creative Team;
The Missing Manual Series;
Flash CS4 Professional for Everyone;
What's New in Flash CS4;
Anatomy of an Animation;
Flash in a Nutshell;
The Very Basics;
Macintosh and Windows;
About This Book;
About the Outline;
About → These → Arrows;
Flash Examples;
Safari® Books Online;
Part I: Creating a Flash Animation;
Chapter 1: Getting Around Flash;
1.1 Starting Flash;
1.2 A Tour of the Flash Desktop;
1.3 Toolbars;
1.4 Panels;
1.5 The Timeline;
1.6 Using the Workspace Switcher;
1.7 The Flash CS4 Test Drive;
1.8 Opening a Flash File;
Chapter 2: Creating Simple Drawings;
2.1 Planning Pays Off;
2.2 Preparing to Draw;
2.3 Creating Original Artwork;
2.4 Copying and Pasting Drawn Objects;
2.5 Adding Color;
Chapter 3: Animating Your Drawings;
3.1 Frame-by-Frame Animation;
3.2 Adding Layers to Your Animation;
3.3 Animating Automatically (Tweening);
Part II: Advanced Drawing and Animation;
Chapter 4: Organizing Frames and Layers;
4.1 Working with Frames;
4.2 Adding Content to Multiple Layers;
4.3 Viewing Layers;
4.4 Working with Layers;
4.5 Organizing Layers;
Chapter 5: Advanced Drawing and Coloring;
5.1 Selecting Graphic Elements;
5.2 Manipulating Graphic Elements;
5.3 Adding Text to Your Drawing;
5.4 Spray Painting Symbols;
5.5 Drawing with the Deco Drawing Tool;
5.6 Advanced Color and Fills;
5.7 Creating Custom Colors;
5.8 Specifying Colors for ActionScript;
5.9 Saving Color Swatches;
5.10 Importing a Custom Color Palette;
5.11 Copying Color with the Eyedropper;
Chapter 6: Reusable Flash: Symbols and Templates;
6.1 Symbols and Instances;
6.2 Templates;
Chapter 7: Advanced Tweens with the Motion Editor;
7.1 Applying Motion Presets;
7.2 Changing the Motion Path;
7.3 Editing a Tween Span;
7.4 A Tour of the Motion Editor;
7.5 Easing Tweens;
Chapter 8: Realistic Animation with IK Bones;
8.1 Linking Symbols with Bones;
8.2 Making Shapes Move with Bones;
8.3 Animating an Armature;
Chapter 9: Incorporating Non-Flash Media Files;
9.1 Incorporating Graphics;
9.2 Importing Illustrator Graphics Files;
9.3 Importing Photoshop Graphic Files;
9.4 Importing Fireworks Graphics;
9.5 Editing Bitmaps;
9.6 Exporting Graphics from Flash;
Chapter 10: Incorporating Sound and Video;
10.1 Incorporating Sound;
10.2 Incorporating Video;
10.3 Importing Video Files;
Part III: Adding Interactivity;
Chapter 11: Introduction to ActionScript 3;
11.1 Getting to Know ActionScript 3;
11.2 Beginning Your ActionScript Project;
11.3 Object-Oriented Thinking;
11.4 Using Data Types, Variables, and Constants;
11.5 Conditionals and Loops;
11.6 Combining ActionScript's Building Blocks;
Chapter 12: Controlling Actions with Events;
12.1 How Events Work;
12.2 Mouse Events;
12.3 Getting Help for Events and Event Listeners;
12.4 Creating a Tabbed Window with Mouse Events;
12.5 Keyboard Events and Text Events;
12.6 Keeping Time with TimerEvent;
12.7 Removing Event Listeners;
12.8 In Case of Other Events;
Chapter 13: Organizing Objects with the Display List;
13.1 The Display List: Everything in Its Place;
13.2 Adding Objects to the Display List;
13.3 Managing the Stacking Order;
13.4 Summary of Properties and Methods;
Chapter 14: Controlling Animation;
14.1 Slowing Down (or Speeding Up) Animation;
14.2 Timeline Stop and Go;
14.3 Organizing an Animation;
14.4 Looping a Series of Frames;
14.5 Reversing a Series of Frames;
Chapter 15: Components for Interactivity;
15.1 Adding Components;
15.2 The Built-in Components;
15.3 Finding Additional Components;
Chapter 16: Choosing, Using, and Animating Text;
16.1 About Typefaces and Fonts;
16.2 Choosing and Using Text Containers;
16.3 Applying Advanced Formatting to Text;
16.4 Adding Hyperlinks to Text;
16.5 Animating Text without ActionScript;
16.6 Controlling Text with ActionScript;
16.7 Creating Text Fields with ActionScript;
16.8 Formatting Characters and Paragraphs;
16.9 Formatting with HTML and CSS;
16.10 Choosing the Right Text Formatting System;
Chapter 17: Drawing with ActionScript;
17.1 What's the Point?;
17.2 Beginning with the Graphics Class;
17.3 Drawing Lines;
17.4 Drawing Curves;
17.5 Drawing Built-in Shapes;
17.6 Drawing Irregular Shapes;
17.7 Making Drawings Move;
17.8 Shape, Sprite, and MovieClip for Drawings;
17.9 Removing Lines and Shapes;
Part IV: Delivering Your Animation to Its Audience;
Chapter 18: Testing and Debugging;
18.1 Testing Strategies;
18.2 Testing on the Stage;
18.3 Testing in Flash Player;
18.4 Testing Inside a Web Page;
18.5 Testing Download Time;
18.6 The Art of Debugging;
18.7 Using the Debugger;
Chapter 19: Publishing and Exporting;
19.1 Optimizing Flash Documents;
19.2 Publishing Your Animations;
19.3 Exporting Flash to Other Formats;
Part V: Appendixes;
Installation and Help;
Flash CS4 Minimum System Requirements;
Installing and Activating Flash CS4;
Getting Help from Flash;
Getting Help from Adobe;
Finding Flash Gurus;
Flash CS4, Menu by Menu;

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Not bad...

    I needed to know how to better use Flash, so this was useful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2010

    Relatively User Friendly Book for a not so user friendly CS4

    Flash is not a particularly user friendly program like its counterparts Illustrator and Photoshop. The book is mostly directed towards PC users although it does have tips and parallel information in most instances for Mac users (which is what I use). I think the book is a good resource for those trying to learn more about how to maneuver through the Flash program. What I like about the book is that it contains a lot of visuals to help guide the reader through the Flash program and covered a lot of what I was looking for. I have a small production company and I wanted to create items for websites and this helped but in some instances, the information was still a little too complex to follow easily. In terms of providing tips for action scripts, I would have liked to have seen a simple table with the action scripts set forth (e.g. to stop a flash from looping, do this ...). I think a lot of readers would prefer just to know the simple actions without as much explanation which can actually confuse things. But overall a helpful resource!

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  • Posted November 29, 2009


    DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK!!!!! It is soooo bad. I'm a design student at NYU. There are so many better books that actually teach you things.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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