It is amazing the amount of work that can be done in such a short space of time sometimes, like the past two days I am not sure how I have managed to squeeze so much in. What is frustrating about it though is what little there is to show for it.
The final presentation for this project is tomorrow…or technically today as I type this to be honest. What is worrying is that it is only in the last few hours that I have managed to get a prototype up and working, well sort of.
To explain I spent most of the weekend trying to get my head around Flash, it got to a point that I was fixated on this one issue of not getting the button to click through to the frame I had specified in the code. As usual the error lay in the way I was expressing the code, it was not quite in the right order. It was then that I discovered that CS5 has this nice little handy feature called code snippets, and this is what has made the prototype come together.
It is also in the last two days after picking up a book from the library that I was going about this project from the wrong angle. Within the book there was four chapters dedicated to creating a simple four page interactive story book. It was fairly basic, but the code and the mechanics could have been bent for the purposes of this project. Yet it is done purely in code, mainly by creating the different pages as movie clips and and then calling them to the stage as and when they are needed in the code. This is however over my head and the time I had left to try and do this was not enough, so I tried to at least get a prototype working with one of the story lines available.
Unfortunately I have made the final file too wide for this current blog layout, so please go here for the original.
This is been created by placing things frame by frame then using basic button code to get it going form frame to frame, which is not what ActionScript 3.0 has been designed for as it does not like navigating time lines it seems. It is also not possible to create the whole project idea this way…or at least it would not be wise to create the whole project this way. As just keeping track of everything was hard enough when trying to ensure one storyline worked, also it would be a very bloated file, and not a good use of the program.
There was a surprise program that was considered briefly which is Flash Catalyst, which again I discovered a little too late, it is very similar to the older versions of Flash, in part by hiding most of the code under the hood. I should have used that for the prototype, but I was having difficulties importing the assets and did not have time to familiarise myself with it. However it is worth bearing in mind and is something that might be worth getting to know for use later on.
Anyway most of today has been spent ensuring that I have all, or at least most of, the write up in a presentable format. Not only to use tomorrow in the presentation, but also for the hand in – I found a way to use Word in a similar way to PowerPoint so I didn’t have to duplicate work as such. This was purely done due to the lack of time I have found myself with from spending too long in Flash. It also means that I can show I have actually done a lot of prep work for this, so I may not have the tech working, but I have the idea and the research fleshed out to a point where I can still convey the idea effectively.