The Library is the repository of all recurring elements, known as symbols, that are placed as Instances within a Flash movie. Imported sounds and bitmaps are automatically placed in the Library. Upon creation, both Buttons and Movie Clips are also stored in the Library. It’s a smart practice to make nearly every item within a Flash movie a symbol, and to develop every item within a Flash movie from component symbols.
The Library is also a true window, not a panel. As shown in Figure below, the Library Window (left) Window➪Library is not the same as the six default asset Libraries (right) that are accessed from the Menu at Window➪Common Libraries. However, they are related. When you choose Window➪Library, you open a Library specific to the current movie, while Common Libraries are available whenever Flash is open. Choose Window➪Common Libraries to open the submenu of Common Libraries that ship with Flash. The Libraries menu is the one menu over which the user has real control. That’s because in addition to the Library items that are placed there in the process of a default installation of Flash you can place your own items there, too.
The default Libraries contain a selection of buttons and symbols to get you started. These are located in the Libraries folder of the Flash application folder. (And when you’re tired of them, you can remove them!) To add your own buttons, symbols, or libraries for specific projects, first save them in a Flash file with a descriptive name, and then place that Flash file in the Libraries folder within the Flash Program folder on your hard drive. Because these default Common Libraries have such obvious names, we won’t waste valuable pages to describe them here. They are Buttons, Graphics, Learning Interactions, Movie Clips, Smart Clips, and Sounds.
The Library window is specific to the current movie, while the other windows, known as the Common Libraries, are available whenever Flash is open.
Working with the Library
Every Flash movie has its own Library, which is used to store and organize symbols, sounds, bitmaps, and other assets such as video files. As shown below, the item highlighted or selected in the Sort Window is previewed in the Preview Window.
If the item selected in the Library is an animation or sound file, you’ll see a controller in the upper-right corner of the Preview window. This Preview Stop/Play controller pops up to facilitate previewing these items. It’s almost equivalent to the Play option that’s found in the Options menu. The Options menu is accessed by clicking the Options triangle, which is located at the upper right of the Library window. As shown below, the Library options pop-up menu lists a number of features, functions, and controls for organizing and working with items in the Library.
The Library window as viewed in Normal state.
Library window and the Options pop-up menu Library items can also be moved between folders by dragging.
Selecting New Symbol, Duplicate, or Properties from the Options Menu launches the Symbol Properties dialog, shown below. Use this dialog to give the symbol a unique name and assign it a behavior (as a symbol type graphic, button, or Movie Clip). However, if the Properties Option is chosen for a sound asset, then the Sound Properties dialog appears.
The Library deployed in Wide State with the waveform of a sound shown in the Preview window.
Symbol Properties dialog (top), and the Update Media dialog (bottom)
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Understanding The Flash Framework
Exploring The Interface: Panels, Settings, And More
Using Tools For Navigation And Viewing
Working With Selections And The Pen Tool
Working With The Drawing And Painting Tools
Working With Text
Exploring The Timeline
Checking Out The Library: Symbols And Instances
Drawing In Flash
Animating In Flash
Using Bitmaps And Other Media With Flash
Designing Interfaces And Interface Elements
Understanding Sound For Flash
Importing And Editing Sounds In Flash
Optimizing Flash Sound For Export
Understanding Actions And Event Handlers
Navigating Flash Timelines
Controlling Movie Clips
Sharing And Loading Assets
Planning Code Structures
Creating Subroutines And Manipulating Data
Understanding Movie Clips As Complex Objects
Sending Data In And Out Of Flash
Understanding Html And Text Field Functions In Flash
What Is Generator?
Revving Up Generator
Working With Third-party, Server-side Applications
Working With Raster Graphics
Working With Vector Graphics
Working With Audio Applications
Working With 3d Graphics
Working With Quicktime
Working With Realplayer
Creating Full-motion Video With Flash
Creating Cartoon Animation With Flash
Planning Flash Production With Flowcharting Software
Working With Authoring Applications
Publishing Flash Movies
Integrating Flash Content With Html
Using Players, Projectors, And Screensaver Utilities
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