Create an Interactive Homepage Marquee with jQuery and Dreamweaver
Illustration by John Hersey

Create an Interactive Homepage Marquee with jQuery and Dreamweaver

with Chris Converse

Video: Adding jQuery, the preload plug-in, and the custom JavaScript file

Before we start writing our own JavaScript, we are going to need to add some libraries to our project. We are going to be adding jQuery and we are going to be adding an image preloading plug-in. So, let's go get those libraries first. I am going to start by jumping over into our browser. First, if we want to go get a copy of jQuery; we can go to jquery.com to get a copy of this. On the main Homepage, on the far right, there is a button that says Download jQuery, and this will always have the latest version. If you click on Download, some browsers will start to download automatically. Some browsers like Safari will show me the actual JavaScript code.

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Watch the Online Video Course Create an Interactive Homepage Marquee with jQuery and Dreamweaver
1h 34m Intermediate May 26, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Discover how to build a visually rich, interactive marquee in order to aggregate and display content on a web site homepage. Author Chris Converse shows how to prepare the artwork in Photoshop and Illustrator, create HTML and CSS layouts, and dynamically generate marquee elements with the open-source JavaScript framework jQuery. Tutorials on animating between content panels are also included.

Topics include:
  • Linking the HTML and CSS layouts
  • Preparing images with the Slice tool and Smart Objects
  • Adding CSS rules for the captions and navigation
  • Producing the photo lineup
  • Creating the navigation links based on the HTML
  • Setting click events for the navigation
  • Animating between photos
  • Initializing the gallery on page load
Subject:
Web
Software:
Dreamweaver jQuery
Author:
Chris Converse

Adding jQuery, the preload plug-in, and the custom JavaScript file

Before we start writing our own JavaScript, we are going to need to add some libraries to our project. We are going to be adding jQuery and we are going to be adding an image preloading plug-in. So, let's go get those libraries first. I am going to start by jumping over into our browser. First, if we want to go get a copy of jQuery; we can go to jquery.com to get a copy of this. On the main Homepage, on the far right, there is a button that says Download jQuery, and this will always have the latest version. If you click on Download, some browsers will start to download automatically. Some browsers like Safari will show me the actual JavaScript code.

If we see this, we can simply choose File > Save As. Let's choose Marquee/ includes and we are saving the copy of jquery-1.6.min.js into our includes directory. Next, we are going to far IN space web site. This features a plug-in that we can download for free that will allow us to preload a series of images inside of a parent div container. I really like this plug-in. It's really simple and straightforward, and gives us one simple statement, just call one function to activate the plug- in and the div and have it download all of the images for us automatically, and then give us a callback to let us know when the download is complete.

At the bottom of this page, there is a Download link here. This will download a zip file. If we go back to our exercise files, in the includes directory I included the farinspace folder. This is what you get when you actually expand this out. So what I am going to do is, from the exercise files, just Option+Drag a copy of farinspace into the includes directory of our current myMarquee project. Now that I have the two JavaScript libraries in place, let's close our web browser. Let's go back to Dreamweaver. We want to create our own JavaScript file as well.

So let's choose File > New > JavaScript in the Page Type. Click Create. Let's choose File > Save, and we are going to call this marquee.js. Save it into the includes directory. Hit Save. Now let's come back to the index file. We'll come into the Code view. What we need to do inside of our index file, in the heading area of the document, we need to import all of these JavaScript files.

So I am going to hit Return after the css link up in the Heading area and in Dreamweaver in the Insert panel, under Common, let's come over to far right and choose Script. We are going to import a JavaScript file. Under Source, let's come down to myMarquee/includes, and the first one we need to bring in is jQuery. Click Choose. Click OK. Once we have jQuery, let's hit Return.

Let's add a new script. Let's go grab inside of farinspace. Let's grab the one that is the jquery.imagepreloadmin.js. Click Choose. We have to import jQuery first because this plug-in locks on to jQuery. Hit Return and then lastly, let's import our custom JavaScript that we are going to be creating. Let's come out of farinspace, into includes/ marquee.js. Then click Choose and say OK.

So now that we have the jQuery library in place and our plug-in and we have our own custom JS file that we are going to be working with, in the next movie we can start writing some JavaScript.

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