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Basic Actions in Depth

In Flash, basic actions actually take you far beyond the basics, allowing you to create powerful interactivity with little effort. In this section, we'll show you how to use Flash's Basic Action set to turn your movies into multimedia extravaganzas.

In the following section on actions and their values, we use the terms expression and evaluate frequently. These require a brief explanation. You must set parameters for most of the actions in Flash to make them function the way you want. For example, the Go To action, which you'll learn about shortly, requires that you identify a frame to go to by frame number or label. You can enter an exact value, such as 25, or you can set the value of the parameter based on the value an expression evaluates to. Let's say you needed to specify the frame number to go to. Instead of simply entering a value of 25, you entered something like 18 + 7: The latter is an expression—in other words, an equation or phrase that evaluates to, or equals, a specific value (in this case 25). Using this expression for the parameter's value would cause the Go To action to go to frame 25 just as if you had directly entered 25. Expressions can take many forms and can evaluate to many types of values, including numbers and text. There are many reasons why you might want to enter an expression rather than an exact value, but let's just say for now that by using them, your movies can take on a life of their own. For more detailed information about expressions, see Chapter 12, "Using ActionScript for Advanced Interactivity."


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