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Chapter 3. INTERFACE DESIGN FOR DEVICES > CREATING STANDARD COMPONENTS FOR DEVI...

CREATING STANDARD COMPONENTS FOR DEVICES

No matter what you are creating for devices, at some point, you will need a “standard” component of some sort. Whether you need a radio button, checkbox, slider, or drop-down menu, creating and perfecting the infernal little thing will take up too much of your time. Any time you have to reinvent the wheel, it’s a painful experience; thankfully, you don’t have to do it now. On the web site for this book, (www.flashenabled.com) is a full set of components that are made just for devices. Download them now and then come back and learn all about how to use them!

Understanding Smart Clips

All the other components you’ll create for devices are Flash 5 smart clips. If you are unfamiliar with smart clips, the idea behind them is actually quite simple. Smart clips are just normal movie clips that have a visual interface for setting variables that live within them. Although they are simple, they provide an extremely easy mechanism for configuring reusable components.

Smart clips do have drawbacks, though. Specifically, methods that are defined within a smart clip are not immediately available in their parent’s timeline. This is because a smart clip’s code runs after that of its parent timeline. As long as you keep this limitation in mind and don’t try to access methods within a smart clip immediately, you shouldn’t have trouble.

For more information on creating and working with smart clips, check out the Flash Exchange at www.macromedia.com/exchange/flash/.



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