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The headless Xtras

Now we come to the more difficult class of Xtra: the headless variety. For the most part, these follow the same rules of installation and bundling as other Xtras—they're just a little harder to put to work because they lack a user interface. Here are some examples:

  • NetLingo provides a great deal of the online networking capabilities of Director 8. We've discussed these capabilities in Chapters 5, 14, and 15. The NetLingo commands are also included in this book's A Lingo Lexicon (Appendix C) and in Director's Lingo Dictionary.

  • FileIO lets you both read from and write to standard text files placed anywhere on the local system. (To get networked text, you'll need to use NetLingo commands, which are described in Chapter 14: Scripting with Net-Savvy Lingo.) Since fileIO is very practical but rather inscrutably documented by Macromedia, we'll focus on this Xtra in a moment.

  • MUI lets you create custom dialog boxes containing check boxes, radio buttons, scrolling text fields, and other elements. This Xtra is even more poorly documented than FileIO, so if you need to use custom dialog boxes, you might consider procuring a third-party Xtra or utility that provides the same functionality implemented through a graphical user interface.


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