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Information on how to learn Flash is prevalent, but it can be frustrating to understand how to make an entire working web site using this unique technology. Here's a course that cuts through the clutter and offers practical tools for creating a dynamic web site, even for first-time developers. In Creating a First Web Site with Flash CS4 Professional, veteran Flash instructor Paul Trani simplifies the process of integrating animation, video, audio, and user interactivity to create a site that is dynamic and appealing. The goal of this hands-on workshop is to teach web site-building skills for today’s demanding interactive industry. Exercise files accompany the course.
ActionScript also allows you to use one button and have it do different things. Let me show you what I'm talking about. If I go to the Portfolio section, I have two buttons here. This Forward button and a Back button. So if I click this Forward button, it loads in this portfolio02.jpg, regardless of how many times I click it. Back button does the same thing. It just opens up, loads in portfolio image 1. I basically want to have a dynamic variable in here that loads in different images and not just one. So each time I click on the button, it's going to load in a new image. So that's going to mean creating a variable and adding or subtracting from that variable.
So I'm going to close this test file. I'm going to go to my Timeline; I'm going to scroll down to the Portfolio section. I'm going to double-click on this content_mc and double-click again to enter the Portfolio movie clip Timeline. At the top of that movie clip, we can see in the Timeline panel, we have this ActionScript layer, and first frame is where my ActionScript is going to live. I'm going to go to Window, down to Actions. So here is what's already in there. We have these functions. So this next image function loads in portfolio02. This is what you would call hard-coding a link.
So that's what's going on here. Same thing with the Back image. It's loading in portfolio01. So that's what I need to change, I want this to be 02, 03, that sort of thing. The way to do that is creating a variable. Now variable is going to be that container that holds some sort of value, whatever it is. And in this case, my variable I'll have to start with the word var. It's going to be called imageNumber.
So the container is called imageNumber0 and inside of this container it's going to contain a number. So I'm telling Flash numbers going here and that's it. So the number that's contained in here initially is going to be 1. So to the right of the equal sign is the value. So this is known as a name value pair. So now that we have this imageNumber equal to 1, I want to use this variable name right in here, actually explicitly on this number. So I'm going to replace that too with couple plus signs allowing me to add imageNumber. So I need to make sure this variable name is exactly the same as this.
So this allows me if I have a plus sign on either side of this variable and quotes around these strings, then it's going to give me the equivalent of the number 1. Let me undo that. All right, I need to do one more thing, because it's going to continually load in portfolio image 1. So within this function, I want to add to the imageNumber and I can add to the imageNumber by typing in there imageNumber and then two plus signs and this does the equivalent of-- let me add a comment here-- add a number to the current value, more or less. So we're adding to the current value +1.
All right, current number is going to add 1, so it's going to be equal to 2, then it's going to be equal to 3, and it's going to load in that into our ImageLoader. So let's go to Control > Test Movie. Click on the Portfolio section, let's click this Next button, click one more time, oh, and it is working. There we are in the last image.
So if I go in my images folder, you can see it's loading in all of these images, just exactly the way I wanted to work. Now the issue still is this Back button. If I click on it, it's always going to load in that image. So let's modify that function. Let me close my test file, move this Actions panel up, and I want to do the same thing, I want to subtract 1 from the current value.
So whatever imageNumber is, subtract 1 from it is what this is doing. I am going to replace this number 1 the same way I've replaced number 2 up above and that's by adding imageNumber. All right. That's all I have to do. imageNumber. That looks good. That looks good. I'll check the syntax. It says there are no errors. So let's go ahead and go to Control > Text Movie. Portfolio section, Next, Next, and then Back.
We can see that it works great, and you can see how powerful that is, changing something that's hard-coded to a variable makes this so much more powerful in both cases. So really, variables are really the backbone of anything that you write in Flash or with any programming language.
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