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Building a behavior function

From: Dreamweaver CS3 Beyond the Basics

Video: Building a behavior function

In this lesson, we are going to begin to build out our behavior by adding some of those Core Behavior functions. Now we have got an existing template file that's going to assist us with this. So if you are working from the Exercise Files just go ahead and open this up. In the Chapter 9 Exercise Files directory, you are going to find a subdirectory of _js and this is where we are going to place all of our JavaScript. In that folder, there is a file called behavior_template.js. Go ahead and double-click that to open it up. So this behavior template it just has commented sections and it's actually based off of Adobe's behavior files. So this is using the same commenting structure that they have use for their own behavior files.

Building a behavior function

In this lesson, we are going to begin to build out our behavior by adding some of those Core Behavior functions. Now we have got an existing template file that's going to assist us with this. So if you are working from the Exercise Files just go ahead and open this up. In the Chapter 9 Exercise Files directory, you are going to find a subdirectory of _js and this is where we are going to place all of our JavaScript. In that folder, there is a file called behavior_template.js. Go ahead and double-click that to open it up. So this behavior template it just has commented sections and it's actually based off of Adobe's behavior files. So this is using the same commenting structure that they have use for their own behavior files.

Just to do a brief overview of the areas, we have at the top global variables, we would declare any of our global variables that all of our functions are going to use there. Underneath that we have our Behavior Functions and that's where your JavaScript is going to define the actual behavior. That's where that's going to go. Underneath that we have a section of API functions. Now these are functions that are going to drive the application and the execution of the behavior and those are function that's usually tie in the Dreamweaver's JavaScript to API and finally we have a Local Functions area. That's where any local functions that are going to affect the action file. That's where we are going to place those.

All right, so let's do a Save As and I am going to save this in the same folder, the js folder, and I am just going to call this styleSwitcher.js and you are going to want to name this JavaScript file and the action file the exact same thing, so later on when we create our action file, we have to remember exactly what we have named this because you really want this to be the named the same. It's not a requirement, this was a very good idea, because it will help you or anyone else who is modifying these find and identify those files. So I will go ahead and hit Save.

Now we don't need to hand-code this function because we already have it and that's part of the reason why you want to go ahead and work from existing JavaScript function. You know it works, you have already got the code, you don't have to reinvent the wheel. So let's open up the index_switcher file, switch over to Code View and scroll to the very top of the code in the head. Now there, we need to go ahead and highlight our JavaScript function. You don't need the Script tags. We don't want those, we just want the function itself and remember to get started at the very top of the function on line 10, highlight all the way down to line 19 which is the closing curly brace and go ahead and copy that code.

We will switch back to our styles with our JavaScript file and I am just going to place my cursor on a line inside the Behavior functions area and line 11 is a good place to start. Now I like going ahead and commenting out everything. So I am going to replace the -- this is where your JavaScript has comment. So I am going to highlight that and I am going to type in function to set active style sheet and then on the line below that we will go ahead and paste our function and as soon as you do that go ahead and save it.

Now occasionally you are going to want to modify your function as it's placed in here. But this function is pretty basic it's accepting one parameter, the parameter's name is title, you can see that right here on the function call and is titled. We don't really need to modify that; we just need to remember what the name of the function is. So now that we have done that, we are ready to add a couple of our core API functions. So let's scroll down into the API functions area and we are going to go ahead and add a couple of those core functions here. Again, I am a big believer in commenting out. So type in two forward slashes that's a single line comment in JavaScript and type in Checks to see which tags or events this behavior applies. And on another line, I am going to go ahead do another single line comment and I am going to type in, This behavior can be used with any tag and any event.

So we are writing a very, very global behavior, any tag can actually have this behavior applied to it. I am going to create a little distance between the top comments and this one because I want to make sure that I know which comments apply to which section of text. Now underneath the comments we have just added, we are going to go ahead and create a new JavaScript function. So just type in the word function and after that you want to do a space and we are going to type in canAcceptBehavior. Now if you are going to create your own templates later on, you could actually make the core functions part of your template, and we could have done that but I think there is a lot of value in typing this in and understanding what this function is and what it does for us.

So I am going to open and close my parenthesis after defining the function, open up a curly brace and I will like to hit Enter twice and close the curly brace. Now the reason I would like to do that is because all the code in the curly braces is going to be executed when the function is called and if you don't have a closing curly brace, its bad syntax and your function won't work. So a lot of times people will code forever in a day and they will forget that last closing curly brace and their function won't work. So I will go back up in line between that and I am just going to type in return and then a space and then the word true. So what this function is doing is just one thing, it's returning a value of true. When you select an item and you go up to the Behaviors panel and you click the Plus symbol, Dreamweaver is going to say hey, can this item on the page accept this behavior? This behavior is going to return true and say yes I can. You could add some conditional logic in this if you actually wanted to restrict to certain types of objects. So we will save this file and we will move on to our next function.

So just below this go ahead and create a couple of blank lines below this function and I am going to type in another single line comment and I am going to type in Returns a JavaScript function to be inserted in the HTML head with script text. So again what this function is going to do is when somebody applies our behavior, it's going to go find the JavaScript that needs to be added to the head of the document in order to make this behavior work. So this function has to be able to tell Dreamweaver where to find that particular block of code.

So we will be down to our next line and we will type in function then a space behaviorFunction. Now you have to stick with this naming convention, don't start changing the names of these functions because when you apply behavior, Dreamweaver is going to call these functions and look for their value and if it doesn't find those function, your behavior won't work. So again I will do an open and close parenthesis, open up a curly brace, I will hit Enter twice, I will close the curly brace. Now inside my new function skeleton, I am going to type in Return and then a space and then setActiveStyleSheet.

Now if that looks familiar, it should. That is the name of the function that we pasted at the top of the page, so if I scroll up to the very top of our code, you can see we have a function defined here called setActiveStyleSheet. So our behavior function, what that's doing is when Dreamweaver calls it and says okay where is the code for this behavior? It says go find the function setActiveStyleSheet. That's the code you need to bring in to the page that the behavior is being applied to.

Okay, so save that, and we have finished the first part of this. We have established our desired function. We are allowing any elements to trigger the behavior and we are telling Dreamweaver which function to add to the page that the behavior is being applied to. So our next step is to go ahead and begin creating the user interface, which will allow users to control our behavior.

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This video is part of

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Dreamweaver CS3 Beyond the Basics

102 video lessons · 38727 viewers

James Williamson
Author

 
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  1. 2m 3s
    1. Welcome
      1m 17s
    2. Using the exercise files
      46s
  2. 1h 23m
    1. Reviewing the Coding toolbar
      8m 42s
    2. Customizing the Coding toolbar
      9m 52s
    3. Taking advantage of Code Hinting
      7m 20s
    4. Using snippets and shortcuts
      11m 10s
    5. Using the Quick Tag Editor
      5m 18s
    6. Using Find and Replace
      9m 50s
    7. Regular expressions
      5m 39s
    8. Using Bridge with Dreamweaver CS3
      8m 28s
    9. Round-trip editing with Photoshop CS3
      3m 40s
    10. Leveraging image variables in Photoshop CS3
      7m 32s
    11. Integrating external variables into your workflow
      6m 16s
  3. 37m 26s
    1. Understanding the CSS Styles panel
      7m 59s
    2. Understanding the Cascade
      5m 50s
    3. Understanding Inheritance
      5m 8s
    4. Understanding Specificity
      7m 5s
    5. Managing CSS styles
      5m 4s
    6. Using Design-Time style sheets
      6m 20s
  4. 2h 19m
    1. Using the new CSS template pages
      5m 59s
    2. Understanding DIV tag structure and layout
      12m 0s
    3. Understanding the CSS box model
      10m 0s
    4. Using absolute and relative positioning
      8m 35s
    5. Understanding floating elements
      7m 9s
    6. Clearing floats
      7m 19s
    7. Using floats to control page layout
      3m 45s
    8. Building structure and assigning IDs
      10m 19s
    9. Applying basic styling to structured content
      11m 14s
    10. Positioning container elements
      11m 4s
    11. Enhancing layouts with background graphics
      11m 48s
    12. Creating faux columns with background graphics
      8m 55s
    13. Creating rounded corners with background graphics
      9m 17s
    14. Building navigation with CSS
      16m 57s
    15. Using Dreamweaver's Browser Check feature
      5m 31s
  5. 53m 22s
    1. Creating properly structured forms
      6m 30s
    2. Creating accessible forms
      6m 41s
    3. Using CSS to lay out form structure
      7m 40s
    4. Creating vertical columns for form elements
      7m 48s
    5. Adding user feedback
      5m 52s
    6. Applying advanced styling to forms
      8m 11s
    7. Client-side form validation
      4m 17s
    8. Validating forms with the Spry Validation tools
      6m 23s
  6. 1h 20m
    1. Understanding the Spry framework
      3m 43s
    2. Defining a data source for use in Spry
      3m 56s
    3. Creating a Spry table
      8m 8s
    4. Using the Spry widgets
      8m 11s
    5. Connecting various data sets
      4m 50s
    6. Understanding Spry widget structures
      7m 1s
    7. Applying custom styles to Spry widgets
      6m 24s
    8. Applying additional custom styles to Spry widgets
      8m 46s
    9. Controlling Spry widget behaviors with JavaScript
      6m 0s
    10. Controlling Spry widget animations with JavaScript
      9m 31s
    11. Creating effects with Spry behaviors
      4m 42s
    12. Hand-coding Spry
      9m 11s
  7. 1h 11m
    1. Creating a base template
      8m 6s
    2. Creating editable attributes
      6m 26s
    3. Creating a new page from a template
      7m 42s
    4. Applying a template to an existing page
      4m 36s
    5. Creating nested templates
      5m 24s
    6. Using repeating regions
      6m 34s
    7. Creating editable and non-editable optional regions
      6m 0s
    8. Using template parameters
      7m 26s
    9. Using template expressions
      9m 59s
    10. Using conditional template expressions
      8m 54s
  8. 54m 40s
    1. Examining XML structure
      2m 44s
    2. Creating an XML document
      9m 9s
    3. Using the CDATA structure
      5m 7s
    4. Creating an XSLT file
      4m 33s
    5. Binding data from an XML to an XSLT document
      5m 6s
    6. Inserting repeating regions into an XSL document
      5m 16s
    7. Creating a client-side XSL transformation
      2m 52s
    8. Styling a remote RSS feed
      7m 29s
    9. Creating a server-side XSL transformation
      5m 31s
    10. Writing XSL expressions
      6m 53s
  9. 1h 2m
    1. Overview of building dynamic websites
      1m 35s
    2. Installing PHP, MySQL, and Apache on Mac
      3m 22s
    3. Installing PHP, MySQL, and Apache on Windows
      3m 54s
    4. Creating a MySQL database
      3m 16s
    5. Defining a testing server and database bindings
      6m 14s
    6. Creating a database recordset
      4m 35s
    7. Adding dynamic content to the page
      5m 14s
    8. Creating repeating regions of dynamic content
      7m 6s
    9. Filtering database records
      7m 39s
    10. Using the Live Preview
      10m 22s
    11. Passing URL parameters
      4m 23s
    12. Dynamically generating links
      5m 18s
  10. 57m 9s
    1. Understanding behaviors
      5m 16s
    2. Installing additional behaviors
      3m 39s
    3. Planning to create a custom behavior
      3m 42s
    4. Examining existing behaviors
      5m 32s
    5. Building a behavior function
      7m 23s
    6. Creating an Action file
      6m 48s
    7. Enabling behavior functions
      9m 1s
    8. Initializing the user interface for a behavior
      3m 9s
    9. Loading behaviors in Dreamweaver
      6m 47s
    10. Testing and debugging behaviors
      5m 52s
  11. 27m 12s
    1. Running reports
      7m 41s
    2. Checking and validating links
      3m 40s
    3. Using cloaking
      5m 42s
    4. Using Check In/Check Out
      4m 3s
    5. Using Design Notes
      6m 6s
  12. 20s
    1. Goodbye
      20s

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