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Hour 22. Working on Large Projects and i... > Task: Use the Swap Symbol Technique ...

Task: Use the Swap Symbol Technique as Applied to Code-Data Separation

This task uses a built-in feature of Flash to demonstrate how the motion of an animation can be separated from the symbol being animated. Here are the steps to follow:

1.
Create a block of text and convert it to a symbol called “Holder Text.” Create a Motion Tween. Add some Easing and scale it at the first keyframe—anything to make the motion obvious.

2.
Test the movie. Now, imagine that this is perfect for one section of your site, but you want some other text to follow the same path in another scene. Click the “Layer 1” layer, which should select all the frames of this layer. Now select Edit, Copy Frames.

3.
Create a new scene by selecting Insert, Scene. Click the first frame and then select Edit, Paste Frames. You've just copied everything about the first tween into the new scene. However, you want the duplicate frames to animate a different symbol.

4.
Create another block of text (it doesn't matter exactly in which frame or layer you create it because you'll trash the instance in a minute). Select the text and convert it to a symbol named “Replacement.” Now delete the instance of Replacement onscreen. (Don't worry, it's safe in the Library.)

5.
Now swap out the Holder Text symbol. In Frame 1, select the instance of Holder Text and, from the Properties panel, click the Swap button (as shown in Figure 22.1). This button allows you to exchange the selected instance with a different symbol in your Library.

Figure 22.1. The Properties panel's Swap button allows you to exchange the selected instance with a different symbol in your library.


6.
The Swap Symbol dialog box, shown in Figure 22.2, lists all the symbols in your Library and places a dot by the one currently linked to the instance you have selected. Select the Replacement symbol and then click OK. If there are instances of Holder Text in any other keyframes of your animation, you'll have to replace each of them the same way.

Figure 22.2. The Swap Symbol dialog box provides a list of all items in the Library and a dot next to the one with which you're currently linked.



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