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Flash Inquiries

Perplexed On A Few Issues Concerning Flash Movie.



4:46 pm on Dec 21, 2000 (gmt 0)

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I have spent the last few weeks to develop an intro to my company's website. I've posted this same question in Flash Kit's site, but haven't received any response. I'm hoping somebody here works with Flash a bit and can offer some feedback.

I'm having trouble with the publishing aspect of the movie. I kinda went overboard on the size of the movie, however still trying to get it tweaked to optimal despite itself.

The URL to view is:


I'm working from a 133 Mhz machine with a cable Internet hookup. The movie is kinda jumpy on my machine, but smooth for the most part. On faster systems with cable or DSL, it seems to play great.

A few problems that I need insight for:

1. The preloader is supposed to be animated with the logo revolving and three dots appearing and looping in succession during the download (Loading...). I have the action script set to start playing the movie after the 500th frame. There is no animation to the preloader and cannot figure out why for the life of me. Can't see any reason for this to not be working.

2. On a AOL browser, the part of the movie that isn't supposed to show outside of the "frame" does during the tweening sequence for the sailboat and "rising ocean" part. For example, the setting sun is seen outside of the boundaries of the frame when it shouldn't.

3. Any advice as to whether it is wise to increase the time the preloader holds off starting the movie. It is already set for 500 frames. I'm seeing that the movie is still not playing well in certain parts and feel the increase will fix this, but don't know how long it will take for a 56k modem'd machine to finally start playing the movie...with a cable modem, I wouldn't know.

I'm sure there are other little glitches, but don't know what they are until told from other viewers during testing. I figure it can't be that bad for my first Flash, but would love to hear as much criticism of it as possible. It would help avoid alot of wasted time in the future:-)

12:00 am on Dec 23, 2000 (gmt 0)

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jgervais - You're not getting ignored, nobody is available right now that can answer your question. There's a good deal of talent and experience among the moderators and I brought your post to their attention in the mods forum. Many are away for the holidays. I also asked my daughter to see if she could help, she's fairly familiar with Flash. She says it'll involve several hours of research for her, and it's time she doesn't have right now. Best we can do so far... sorry
7:21 pm on Dec 23, 2000 (gmt 0)

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Hi jgervais- I'm the one my father (above) told you about. To me, flash can be a very complicated program. I don't get to use it everyday, so I find that I have to relearn things when I go back to the program. My suggestion is this: contact Macromedia support. They have helped me out of several jams and taught me a few tricks.
And one final thing, you should probably reduce the length of your movie. It seems too long and you may lose some of your audience.
6:37 pm on Dec 30, 2000 (gmt 0)

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You seem to be faily well educated in Flash. That is a very good presentation and if it even runs on a 133 you are streaming the symbols and tweens far enough apart. Excellent :). The "if frame is loaded command" should be set to 500...you already knew that. The next command should be "goto and play" ..specify what movie to play and the frame.
The aol thing? Got me.

You might consider tracing the logo bitmaps to vectors and do a change lines to fills and then optimize. It MIGHT decrease some file size..but check to see if it does. This will help it scale better (w/o jaggies) and help streaming.
The Movie is fairly long...I obviously like flash but there are alot who dont. You might make the movie a "Commercial" i.e. optional and not force the user to sit thru it (ala Jakob Nielson).
Actually it's one of the better uses for Flash that I've seen for a company site.
Keep tweakin...Flash ain't easy,Dude.


7:29 pm on Dec 30, 2000 (gmt 0)

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I want to thank everyone for the replies and advice. I got kinda carried away with putting this together. Was having too much fun at first:-) I agree that it's a bit too lengthy and I'm in the process of shortening it now.

I'm still perplexed to why the preload animation is not working. It appears before the main movie for the 500 frames I have it set for, but all you are seeing is the logo and none of the minor text animation I have with it. It is just showing a static page. What I can't figure out is, I see no reason why there is no animation for what little I put in.

Bone, the action scripting is as you said it should be. Why is there no animation to the preloader? I also agree that maybe I need to convert the bitmaps to vector again. What was weird is, I did have a vector image in for the logo as it enlarges and drops to the bottom before the sailboat sequence. However, it ran on my 133 extremely slow. I assumed that it was because processing a vector to enlarge like it is consumed more resources, so went back to the bitmap image. However, maybe I should try it again after I shorten the movie.

Again, thanks for the replies and look forward to any other feedback you might have. I'm also looking forward to putting it online once it's straight. Happy Holidays, Everyone!

Jim Gervais