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Chapter 13. Building a Code Library > Homemade Components

Homemade Components

In the preceding chapter, you learned how to use the second-generation (V2) components. They’re useful, and you’re likely to see even more handy components published over time. Although this chapter doesn’t attempt to deconstruct the UI components, you will see how modest components that you build yourself can be very easy to make and useful throughout your projects. If nothing else, this section walks you through the first steps in making any component.

Designing a Component

Like any project, building a component starts with design. First understand what a component is: a movie clip for which initial values are assigned—by the author using it—via the Parameters tab. Any movie clip can have contained variables, but each instance starts with the same initial values for those variables. Obviously, you can refer to a clip’s instance name to change its variables using ActionScript, but sometimes it’s more convenient for authors to set such variables in a similar manner as they set properties—right in the Properties panel.


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