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Flash CS3 Professional Beyond the Basics
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Working with form variables


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Flash CS3 Professional Beyond the Basics

with Todd Perkins

Video: Working with form variables

Now we're going to talk about sending URL variables in our form. If you're following along I'm working in 04_URL_Variables.fla in the Chapter 07 folder in the Exercise Files folder. Now, if you're familiar with html forms, you may know exactly what URL variables are, but if you're unfamiliar with html forms, that may sound like a very foreign, a very confusing term. Basically URL variables refer to the information that a form sends. For example picture somebody on a website filling out a form, they fill our their name and their e-mail and comments and they click the Submit button to send the form in an e-mail.
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  1. 3m 30s
    1. Welcome
      1m 20s
    2. Getting the most from this training
      1m 20s
    3. Using the exercise files
      50s
  2. 15m 28s
    1. Managing digital assets
      4m 9s
    2. Creating custom keyboard shortcuts
      5m 1s
    3. Creating custom color swatches
      3m 41s
    4. Creating a custom template
      2m 37s
  3. 14m 38s
    1. Working with variables
      3m 41s
    2. Using functions
      3m 30s
    3. Working with events
      2m 11s
    4. Using event listeners
      2m 42s
    5. Working with arrays
      2m 34s
  4. 29m 41s
    1. Understanding dynamic text fields
      2m 37s
    2. Loading text from an external file
      6m 42s
    3. Reading HTML from a text field
      5m 29s
    4. Applying CSS with ActionScript
      7m 0s
    5. Applying external CSS to a text field
      7m 53s
  5. 45m 27s
    1. Masking dynamic text
      4m 59s
    2. Dragging the Scroll Bar
      7m 3s
    3. Calculating a scroll percent
      5m 20s
    4. Setting scroll boundaries
      4m 9s
    5. Connecting the ScrollBar to the text field
      2m 55s
    6. Easing the text with the ScrollBar
      4m 12s
    7. Scrolling the text with buttons
      2m 38s
    8. Animating the scrolling text with the buttons
      4m 26s
    9. Setting boundaries for the scrolling text
      4m 26s
    10. Easing the text using the buttons
      1m 37s
    11. Connecting the ScrollBar to the Scroll buttons
      3m 42s
  6. 20m 46s
    1. Organizing a complex object into layers
      1m 51s
    2. Duplicating MovieClips
      1m 29s
    3. Undocking the timeline
      1m 20s
    4. Animating a complex MovieClip
      4m 36s
    5. Creating an animated Hinge effect
      5m 13s
    6. Creating complex animations
      6m 17s
  7. 28m 1s
    1. Controlling objects with buttons
      4m 6s
    2. Understanding frame labels
      3m 25s
    3. Using buttons to navigate labeled frames
      2m 30s
    4. Nesting code within MovieClips
      5m 8s
    5. Adding sound to the application
      2m 34s
    6. Adding drag interactivity to the robot
      6m 1s
    7. Animating the dragged robot
      4m 17s
  8. 20m 3s
    1. Understanding components
      2m 30s
    2. Using components to setup a form
      3m 45s
    3. Setting up the form to send an email
      3m 38s
    4. Working with form variables
      6m 11s
    5. Skinning components
      3m 59s
  9. 27m 40s
    1. Using transparency in a video
      4m 16s
    2. Working with embedded video
      3m 38s
    3. Animating a VideoClip
      2m 53s
    4. Creating an advanced animation with video
      2m 40s
    5. Working with the bitmap data class
      3m 37s
    6. Working with the bitmap class
      1m 40s
    7. Copying the video to create a reflection
      1m 35s
    8. Reflecting the video
      2m 42s
    9. Enhancing a video reflection with a mask
      4m 39s
  10. 1h 38m
    1. Viewing the finished MP3 player
      1m 45s
    2. Understanding the project flow
      2m 52s
    3. Preparing to build the MP3 player
      5m 11s
    4. Understanding classes and packages
      5m 32s
    5. Creating the MP3 player class
      9m 59s
    6. Loading sounds from external files
      9m 20s
    7. Accessing ID3 tag information
      6m 11s
    8. Controlling sound playback with Play and Pause buttons
      11m 3s
    9. Changing tracks
      12m 1s
    10. Displaying the current volume
      9m 33s
    11. Changing the volume
      6m 40s
    12. Wiring the progress bar
      8m 4s
    13. Building the progress bar slider
      10m 4s
  11. 5m 36s
    1. Making Flash movies accessible
      1m 49s
    2. Adding a name and description to your Flash movie
      52s
    3. Accessibility and text fields
      2m 55s
  12. 12m 2s
    1. Understanding Flash Mobile
      35s
    2. Exploring Device Central
      1m 45s
    3. Updating Device Profiles
      1m 7s
    4. Creating a Flash file from Device Central
      2m 7s
    5. Creating and testing Flash Lite applications
      2m 48s
    6. Downloading the Flash Lite player for Windows Mobile
      1m 44s
    7. Getting a Flash Lite application onto your phone
      1m 56s
  13. 27s
    1. Goodbye
      27s

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Flash CS3 Professional Beyond the Basics
5h 21m Intermediate Dec 06, 2007

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Through several hands-on tutorials, instructor Todd Perkins shows how to best build dynamic, streamlined sites using Flash CS3 Professional. Learn how to create custom keyboard shortcuts, apply advanced text techniques such as animating scrolling text with custom easing controls, and using advanced animation techniques. Flash CS3 Professional Beyond the Basics covers many challenging features, including adding complex interactivity to a Flash CS3 project and getting Flash content on a phone. Exercise files accompany the tutorials.

Topics include:
  • Customizing Flash CS3 and managing assets Working with ActionScript variables Understanding dynamic text fields Adding interactivity to dynamic text Animating a complex MovieClip Using buttons to navigate labeled frames Working with components Exploring advanced audio and video techniques Creating accessible Flash content Understanding Flash Mobile
Subject:
Web
Software:
Flash Professional
Author:
Todd Perkins

Working with form variables

Now we're going to talk about sending URL variables in our form. If you're following along I'm working in 04_URL_Variables.fla in the Chapter 07 folder in the Exercise Files folder. Now, if you're familiar with html forms, you may know exactly what URL variables are, but if you're unfamiliar with html forms, that may sound like a very foreign, a very confusing term. Basically URL variables refer to the information that a form sends. For example picture somebody on a website filling out a form, they fill our their name and their e-mail and comments and they click the Submit button to send the form in an e-mail.

The URL variables are the information held in the Name text field, the e-mail text field, and the Comments text field. What we do need to its connect that information and send that to our file that's going to process our form and send an e-mail, and that's how we get information from a form into an e-mail. So let's select frame one of the actions layer and open up the Actions panel by pressing option F9 on the Mac or F9 on the PC. One very effective way to attach URL variables to a URL address is to use the URL variables class.

What I'm going to do in our variable section below line 2, I'm going to create a new variable. I'm going to call this variable variables and this represents our URL variables. The datatype is going to be URLVariables. Flash actually has a class just for managing URL variables. We'll set this variable equal to a new instance of the URL variables class. The URL variables class is a dynamic class just like the object class. That means you can create your own properties and values with an instance of the URL variables class.

This is very useful for sending form information, because often a script that processes your form and sends an e-mail wants certain named values in order to send the e-mail properly. For example, your script may require you to send a variable called subject and that would include the information that's in the subject of the e-mail being sent. Let's take a look at how to create that variable next. Go to the next line. Type variables.subject, notice I'm not getting any code hinting because this property does not exist, I'm creating it right now.

I'll set it equal to "Information sent from a Flash Form"; So now this value's connected to our URL variables object. Let's go to the next line. Another thing the form simply asked for is the recipient of an e-mail. So I'll type variables.recipient equals and I'm just going to give the generic name of "you@yourdomain.com"; Remember it's a string value cause this is an e-mail address.

So now we've connected the recipient variable to our form variables. The next step is to take the values that are inside of the text fields in the form, when the user clicks the Submit button and attach those values to our variables object. At the top of the sendForm function, type variables.name. This can be something that's also required or may be optional for your form mail script. Set that equal to name_txt.text; And this will be equal to whatever is inside of the name text field.

On the next line, type variables.email. We'll set that equal to email_txt.text; The last property we'll set is comments. So let's go down to the next line and type variabless.comments = comments_txt.text; Now we have two more steps left. First we have to specify a way that our URL request is going to send form variables.

So let's go down right below where we set the value of the URL equal to a new URLRequest, type url.method = URLRequestMethod.POST; Now there's two different methods for sending variables and one is called Post and one is called Get. Post is a little bit more common, but again as specified by your Web server host or your form mail script, you may need to use different URL request method.

But if you don't know you're typically safe with going post here. So let's go to the next line. And now we need to connect our URL request to our form variables. Type url.data = variables; and that connects all of our form variables to our url request. Now if I sound unusually excited about this, it's because this way is fairly simple compared to creating a form in html. Unless you're using a tool that writes all the code for you, when you create a form in html, you have to take all of the form variables and do special encoding on those variables to make sure that they're acceptable to send in html form.

All you have to do in Flash is create properties of whatever values we want on a URL variables object and associate that object with our URL request, and then when we run our navigateToURL function and pass in URL, all the values are encoded properly. Flash is doing all of the encoding of our URL behind the scenes. And if URL encoding is unfamiliar to you as well as html forms, don't worry about it. Just know that Flash is actually doing a lot of work behind the scenes that you would have to do if you were to create the same form using html.

And there you have a form that you can use to send an e-mail. You'll simply have to adjust the address to link to the script that processes the form and sends the e-mail, and you may create different properties on your URL variables object. And that would all be specified inside of your form mail script. And there's a look at how to create and send your form using components.

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