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Chapter 9. Creating Menu Effects > Creating Scripted Menus

Creating Scripted Menus

One of the most common uses for Flash, besides animations, is the capability to make highly dynamic and interactive navigation systems to present content (such as for websites or CD-ROMs). Although you can easily build a navigation system using some JavaScript and dynamic HTML, you can run into various different browser incompatibility problems, or your menu may not work at all if a person doesn't have JavaScript enabled. Additionally, Flash lets you build presentations that are more creatively designed than those built with other technologies. There are animation and effect possibilities with Flash that you cannot replicate using JavaScript or DHTML.

In this chapter, you build a menu using ActionScript and look at how to embed fonts in a dynamic text field, how to use global variables, and how to use Flash's drawing application programming interface (API). Most of the effects in the menu are created by using ActionScript, instead of motion tweens. Even if that sounds complicated, it is actually much easier than adding the effects manually using motion tweens on the Timeline. It also lets you customize the effects later on to suit your own menus. These advantages might become more obvious during the tutorial.


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