Teach Yourself VISUALLY Flash 5
||Author: Sherry Willard Kinkoph|
List Price: $29.99
Our Price: Click to see the latest and low price
Publisher: Visual (01 November, 2000)
Sales Rank: 93,780
Average Customer Rating: 4.11 out of 5
Customer ReviewsRating: 5 out of 5
An excellent book for beginners
This is a book for someone who knows absolutely nothing about Flash 5, like me at one time. It has a lot of cool and colorful images that show you the step by step processes of creating an animation. This book was a life saver in a class where I could not understand the professor who was teaching me Flash. However, by using this book I was able to get a better understanding and knowledge of the program. I was able to complete several class assignments with the help of this book. But be clear this is a book for beginners only. If you want to go more in depth on the capabilities of Flash 5, you must get a more advanced book.
Rating: 4 out of 5
Need to learn Flash quickly?
If you need to learn Flash to complete a project quickly, you'll like this book. It provides a nice visual layout to give you a screen-by-screen walk-through of Flash. Even better, it actually numbers all the steps occurring for each screen.
The book explains how to work with objects, layers, symbols, instances, imported graphics, animation, sound, video, events handling, and other types of interactivity.
I would've preferred that the 'Importing Graphics' section was placed at the beginning, because I rarely build objects *within* Flash. Also, the rollover effects are rather simplistic. There is not enough information about building events-based effects. For example, what if you have several menu buttons and you want each button to show 2 different behaviors when you roll over the button with the mouse? What if you want a more complex animation associated with each of those behaviors? These are common practices, and yet, the book does not go into that level of detail. Still, aside from these shortcomings, this book will probably help you come up to speed quickly on the basics.
Rating: 3 out of 5
"Flash in small bites" good for beginners.
Small Bites: This book is one of a series of Teach Yourself Visually books, each with the tag line "Read less, learn more." Its audience seems to be those who suffer from Fear of Flash, or are spooked at the idea of the Internet or multimedia in general. Information is doled out in bite-sized chunks, as tool operations, panels and processes are patiently explained (sometimes in excruciating detail). It doesn't try to be a reference book, or a must-read for animation gurus...it is designed to be a painless introduction. If you want to learn intricate ActionScripts and interactivity, you'll need to look elsewhere.
Like the other books in the series, the top of each page is elaborately illustrated with slick (if often soul-less) 3-D renderings.Some of these illustrations are helpful, and others are gratuitous and overly cute, obvious space fillers designed to plug holes in the format. Each page bottom is reserved for screen shots and step-by-step instructions.
Information is presented in logical order, and Flash terms and definitions are explained well. The 13 chapters will take most beginners around an hour or more to complete. The Animation Terms Appendix is too short, but what there is of it is good.
Downside: The book would be a better aid for the beginners it's aimed at if the publishers offered some downloadable online files. Nothing beats dissecting files when you're a Flash novice. And, with no mention of Photoshop, Fireworks, ImageReady, Dreamweaver, or the Mac OS anywhere in the book, it's as if the author thinks Flash exists in a vacuum in a Windows-only world. Even browsers, the delivery vehicle for most Flash animations, are given very little ink. It may be that auxiliary programs, alternate OS keyboard commands, and core concepts are tough to wedge into this format. In that case, an author should ask if the format is the tool or the master.
Bottom Line: All in all, this book is a good choice for beginners who want to learn Flash basics with minimum stress. You won't master the program with the book, but you will get a solid foundation in the tools and processes. But you may not get a firm grasp of Flash's core concepts...the chunk-by-chunk approach is better at showing the trees than the forest. Consequently, some beginners who finish this book may end up feeling like a kid who has finished the classroom portion of Driver's Education, but has little behind-the-wheel experience.
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