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Designing Your Web Site to Be Modular

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This chapter is from the book

It's possible to create a huge Web site entirely with one giant Flash file. However, separating the site into modular segments has distinct advantages. Just to name a few, you can load portions of the site as needed (instead of making every visitor download everything), several team members can be working on the same site simultaneously, you can update portions of the site as they change instead of having to reedit one master file, and you can create different versions of the site for different languages by just swapping out portions with language-specific content. There are other reasons why modularity is good, but it comes down to efficiency, your productivity, and the user experience.

This hour covers several ways a Flash site can be modularized as well as some of the issues you'll need to consider in deciding when and where to modularize.

In this hour you will

  • Learn how the loadMovie Action lets you play one movie inside another or display an external .jpg image

  • Learn how the loadSound Action lets you play external .mp3 sounds

  • Learn the benefits of and how to use Shared Libraries

  • See how scripts can be stored outside the Flash file using the Action #include

Although the technical issues covered this hour are not particularly difficult, the Flash features discussed are strict and unforgiving. After you get the features covered this hour to work, it's fine. The difficulty comes in deciding the appropriate use of such features. That is, it's easy to learn how these features work, but it's more difficult to decide when to use them and where to use them. For each feature, you'll first learn how it works and then look at practical uses.

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