Flash MX 3D Graphics Bible / Edition 1

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Overview

* Macromedia Flash MX is the world's hottest Web development tool, with more than 500 million users and one million designer/developers
* Covers essential information for Flash developers who are developing games, marketing materials, training materials, and more
* Shows how to create 3D Flash applications using Flash's built-in tools, plug-ins, Swift 3D, Plazma 3D, Discrete 3D, and other leading products that export to the Flash format
* CD-ROM includes scores of examples from the book, plus tryouts of Flash and leading Flash 3D applications
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Have you noticed that the Web’s a little flat? That’s about to change. After several false starts (remember VRML?) the Web is about to go 3D -- in a big way.

The royal road to 3D on the Web? Flash. Yup, the self-same player that’s already running on more than 527 million PCs and Macs (and Linux, and Pocket PCs, and Solaris, and HP-UX, and…). Between Flash’s super-efficient file format and the near-universal availability of fast hardware, quick 3D is finally viable. (It doesn’t hurt that 50 percent of all Internet traffic is now delivered across connections running at 128K or faster.)

You’re thinking: Flash doesn’t generate 3D. True: Flash made its name as a 2D animation tool. But it’s surprisingly easy to fool the Flash Player into thinking it can render 3D.

Here’s how it works: You build and design your 3D content using a true 3D animation tool like Electric Rain’s Swift 3D or discreet’s plasma. (Relax: These tools aren’t as hard as you expect. Their developers are aiming for the broad middle of the Flash market, not rocket scientists.) Once you’ve got your 3D animation, you export it to Flash SWF format. Open it in Flash MX, integrate it with your other Flash content, add interactivity with ActionScript if you so desire, and -- voilà! -- Flash 3D.

Flash MX 3D Graphics Bible teaches you how to do all of this. Matthew David starts with a QuickStart tutorial that gives you a first taste of what you can accomplish with Flash 3D, and a refresher on the Flash MX tools you’ll be using to create (or fake) 3D -- drawing, libraries, timelines, and so forth.

Part II focuses on Electric Rain’s Swift 3D 3.0. For years, Swift was the only tool for exporting 3D to Flash. It’s still enormously popular -- both for its relative simplicity and its excellent SWF export options.

Next, David turns to discreet’s plasma. Experienced 3D folks know this firm well -- especially its flagship 3ds max product. As you might expect, plasma is stunningly powerful.

At more than 200 pages, David’s coverage of plasma is really a book in itself. You’ll start by mastering the plasma design environment, which -- thankfully -- owes more to Flash and Photoshop than it does to 3ds max.

David covers primitives and extended primitives, text editing, modifiers, lighting, cameras, materials, timeline controls, animation, and more. There are chapters on plasma’s built-in effects (such as particles and space warps); Havok plug-ins; scripting, and of course, rendering.

David’s nowhere near finished. He presents a full chapter on optimizing your 3D for Internet delivery, another on mixing 3D and 2D, and overviews of 3D in Dreamweaver and Director. His section on building 3D solutions includes chapter-length discussions of all four fields currently most receptive to 3D: presentations, games, marketing/advertising, and distance learning.

You’ll even find coverage of bringing 3D into multi-way audio, video, collaborative, and real-time data applications with Flash MX Communication Server. There’s also a CD-ROM full of 3D samples, ActionScript code, and demoware.

Looking to differentiate yourself from the huddled masses of Web developers yearning for clients? 3D may be your big chance -- and this book will help you grab it. Bill Camarda

Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.

From the Publisher
“…Bible guides have historically been excellent introductions to their subject matter as well as good reference tools for experts, and this is no exception…”(PC Utilities – Editors Choice, July 2003)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764537110
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 5/9/2003
  • Series: Bible Series , #51
  • Edition description: BK&CD-ROM
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 762
  • Product dimensions: 7.41 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 1.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Matthew David is an Internet evangelist, with experience architecting intranet and extranet solutions for many Fortune 500 companies. He is also the author of Great Flash MX Games (published by Wiley), Flash MX Communication Server Bible (published by Wiley), and Flash MX Magic (published by New Riders). In addition, he has contributed to many books (including Flash 5 Magic, Inside Dreamweaver 4, Web Publishing Bible, Flash FX: Visual Design, and VizAct 2000: An Introduction) and regularly contributes articles to magazines. For his latest work, you can go to his Web site at www.matthewdavid.ws.
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Table of Contents

Preface.

Acknowledgments.

Flash MX 3D Graphics QuickStart.

Part I: An Introduction to Flash 3D.

Chapter 1: Flash MX: 3D Basics.

Chapter 2: Drawing, Libraries, and Timelines.

Chapter 3: Faking 3D with Design.

Chapter 4: Using ActionScript to Create 3D.

Part II: Creating Flash 3D with Electric Rain’s Swift 3D 3.0.

Chapter 5: Swift 3D: Designed for Flash.

Chapter 6: Primitives and 3D Importers.

Chapter 7: The Extrusion Editor.

Chapter 8: The Lathe Editor.

Chapter 9: Controlling Light.

Chapter 10: Colors and Bitmaps.

Chapter 11: Cameras.

Chapter 12: Animating with the Swift 3D Time Line.

Chapter 13: RAVIX 3 Exporter.

Chatper 14: EMO Raster Exporter.

Part III: Using discreet’s plasma to Create Flash 3D.

Chapter 15: Plasma: Designed for Flash 3D.

Chapter 16: Using Basic Primitives in plasma.

Chapter 17: Extended Primitives.

Chapter 18: The Text Editor.

Chapter 19: Modifiers.

Chapter 20: Applying Light to Models.

Chapter 21: The Material Editor.

Chapter 22: Using Cameras.

Chapter 23: Timeline Control.

Chapter 24: Animation.

Chapter 25: Using Built-In Effects.

Chapter 26: Using Havok Plug-Ins.

Chapter 27: Getting More Power with MAXScript.

Chapter 28: Rendering as Flash.

Chapter 29: Exporting as Director.

Part IV: Additional Third-Party 3D Tools.

Chapter 30: Director MX.

Chapter 31: Dreamweaver MX.

Part V: Importing 3D Content into Flash.

Chapter 32: Importing to Macromedia Flash MX.

Chapter 33: Optimizing 3D for the Internet.

Chapter 34: Mixing 3D with 2D.

Part VI: Building 3D Solutions.

Chapter 35: 3D Presentations.

Chapter 36: 3D Games.

Chapter 37: 3D Marketing.

Chapter 38: 3D Distance Learning.

Chapter 39: Integrating 3D with Flash MX Communication Server.

Appendix A: What’s on the CD-ROM.

Appendix B: Creating Flash 3D for the Mac.

Index.

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