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Flash Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools Paperback – June 22, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0596006457 ISBN-10: 0596006454 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 498 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1st edition (June 22, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596006454
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596006457
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 5.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,060,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"If you've yet to appreciate all that Flash is capable of, or are a seasoned Web programmer looking to learn some new tricks, then Flash Hacks is a must read. .. If you are resonable familiar with the program, Flash Hacks is both easy to follow and massively informative." PC Utilities - Issue 54

About the Author

Sham Bhangal is an author of and contributor to numerous books on Flash and ActionScript, including Foundation ActionScript for Flash MX, Flash MX Designer's ActionScript Reference, and Macromedia Flash MX Upgrade Essentials.


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Customer Reviews

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This book is about coming up with new ideas for your Flash web designs, ActionScript, and Flash content.
calvinnme
Flash Hacks cover Flash MX, MX2004, and MX Professional 2004 as well as ActionScript 2.0, so it's got the latest tools and techniques.
Midwest Book Review
This is a good book to thumb through from time to time if you need a little inspiration or want something new to work on.
Scott Valentine

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Scott Valentine on November 18, 2004
Format: Paperback
Have you seen the Hacks series from O'Reilly? Great stuff! I've yet to be disappointed with this series. While most of the information does not really qualify as a hack in the traditional sense, meaning you are not mucking with the actual API or backed of the tool, the books are chock-full of little workarounds, fresh attacks on old problems, and some incredible tips that most users won't have found on their own.

Sham Bhangal delivers 100 excellent tips on using Flash MX 2004 and Professional. I think my absolute favourite is Hack #61, Amit's Dials. This little gem shows how to create some interactive controls for tweaking visual and dynamic effects during the authoring process. The idea is to build the basic functionality of your effect through scripting, add these controls so you can fine-tune the effect, and copy the settings back into the script for permanent hardwiring. There are tons of uses for this tip alone, and it's not complicated. The beauty of this hack is in the fact that it's something most, if not every, designer and developer should know about, but very few use. The time and frustration savings are immense.

But the book is overflowing with things like this. Tips on optimizing and working within performance constraints; deciding when to use math versus traditional animation; caveats and gotchas and hidden bits of wisdom... It's in here! How about adding speech synthesis to your Flash application? Need an autocomplete function for a text field? How about tapping into some undocumented ActionScript? Well, keep reading - you'll find all of that in Sham's book.

The greatest value of Flash Hacks is the insight from someone who has been with Flash for a long time.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By peter sgouros on April 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is a member of the Hacks series published by O'Reilly, a series

of books noted for their ability to answer the perennial "gee, I wish

I could..." problem. (though for most people this would be phrased a

good deal less politely. At least it was for me when I was learning Flash)

This book is no exception. I have been

using Flash myself since about version 4 and while I don't spend all

my time with it, I have developed a talent for finding hidden features

and methods in a variety of platforms and programs, and still I was

impressed by a number of the techniques outlined in this book. There

are some which I have, as yet, not really found a use for, but there

are a few that have answered some of the lingering questions about

things that I have always found very silly about Flash.

The book covers Flash MX 2004, though many of the features are not

limited to that version, and where they are the author has made this

very clear, in fact the author has kindly translated some of the code

examples to earlier versions of actionscript where necessary and/or

possible, (well, flash 6 anyway.) The organization of the book is

also a point in its favor as a reference work for the "alternatively

trained" professional. Where many manuals and instruction books are

arranged by tool, this book is organized by result. This is a boon to

those of us who, having a problem with (for example,) sound, will go

through the manual for all the elements to do with sound functions,

only to find that the bit that we needed is covered under UI.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By W Boudville HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 20, 2004
Format: Paperback
Flash is to making web multimedia as Photoshop is to editing static graphics. And like Photoshop, Flash has a devoted coterie who swear by it. But even such fans may find new, nifty things in this book. One might even suggest that such a group is the audience that might benefit the most.

So I started thumbing through the book, to see what caught my eye. [Obviously, your needs will differ.] One method was the construction of a speech synthesiser. Bhangel gives a simple, ingenious way to make a poor man's synthesiser. The sound quality does not match that of commercial synthesisers, like IBM's or Dragon's. But there is a homebrew ambience to this hack that some will find attractive.

A related hack uses a recent improvement to Flash. Finally, there is a way for the end of the playing of a sound to invoke a callback. In other words, you can now synchronise another operation to start after the sound ends. The lack of this has greatly hampered the interactive use of sound in Flash. The author then gives a hack of a lip synching animation. Cute!
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Jack D. Herrington on August 9, 2004
Format: Paperback
The art of making a great Flash movie is all about taking a restricted set of graphics tools and using tricks to make it look as if amazing things are happening. And about finding a way to do that in a small movie that loads quickly. This is no easy feat and it boils down to finding innovative solutions. This book comes with one hundred of these innovative solutions. And if you are a Flash developer it's well worth the money to get these unique techniques wrapped up in this tight form. I strongly recommend this book for any Flash developer.
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