Archive for January, 2011

Drop-down menu/ComboBox coding

January 26, 2011

I managed to get a working preloader, I was hoping the preloader would have helped speed up the scroll time but when on the web it still seems to scroll at quite a slow pace. I will be looking into that further but for now I want to focus on the user-input elements. In AS3 they have a variety of code snippets that can be dragged into a flash document. I am experimenting with the ComboBox interface. The default menu will need to be redone into the style of the rest of the project and the actionscript will need to be customized to my needs.

I found this adobe tutorial that will hopefully help in understanding what code needs to be implemented. Adobe ComboBox Tutorial

The next step after getting this down is to create a tallying system which works in the background to collect correct answers and output a score at some point. Also randomizing which questions will be asked has to be looked into as well.

<—- Example

Here is a link to a question asked about a score counter. I will need to look into this as well to collect user inputs. Link Here

Coding Progress

January 25, 2011

The project has been coming along nicely and I have a working prototype. I will be posting the progress in steps so the development will be easy to track. Right now I have got the scrolling effect working and button navigation is also functioning. I should be able to create a working archive of information at this point which is great news. I’ve tried to copy over a working preloader but for some reason it pauses the file. I’ll have to rework that part of it.  My next step is to get the user input and randomizing code up and running. I will be posting my progress online.

http://ysdn4004-f10w11.wikispaces.com/mike_demoflash

Scroll Code Prototype

January 12, 2011

I have started creating some of the original code for the scrolling menu. I’ve used basic mouse coordinate tracking to get the scroll effect to work. Next I will try to keep it contained within the frame as well as stopping the motion when the cursor leaves the frame.

Check out the prototype progression at the following link:

http://ysdn4004-f10w11.wikispaces.com/mike_demoflash

User input code exploration

January 12, 2011

I have been looking through examples and tutorials for user input. Here is an example of a working quiz game structure that stores your score while you choose from 10 randomly chosen multiple choice questions. http://www.gothlyfe.com/games/season2quizgame/

Here’s a tutorial that was somewhat beneficial in at least showing some layout options for the quiz aspect. http://www.vineyardesigns.com/tutorials/flash/quiz/index.shtml

That quiz game was made entirely in ActionScript 2, which I can manipulate and understand completely. The issue with using it is that I would really like to get to an intermediate level with ActionScript 3. Ideally I would like to learn the new coding language but getting a working project done on time is also very important to me. I’m going to try to hang in there a bit longer with the new code and at least take comfort in knowing I have a plan B if it all goes terribly wrong.

Here’s the format I am currently trying to capture. The finished project should include three initial options (names pending):

  • “test your knowledge” -allows users to view quiz questions one by one (as many as they want) with immediate answers.
  • “expand your knowledge” -allows users to navigate through the answer cards to learn more about the topics.
  • “speed round” -randomly generates 10 questions in a row, percent results are revealed when all the questions have been answered.

Quiz Format

January 12, 2011

Over this passed week, I have been looking at different interfaces for user input. I want the style to be well organized and reflect the feel of the overall project.

Here are some of the ones I came up with:

I have also been looking into code for the user inputs as well as more on scroll code. I have to break it down into parts so I understand each line of the code I am using.

Knowledge Testing

January 5, 2011

Based on suggestions from today’s in-class critique, I will be exploring different methods of boosting the engagement of my project by increasing the interactive component. I will be trying to make the experience more game-like and test users on their knowledge before providing them with the information held within the database. The information already is quite trivia-like so this change should be very beneficial to bringing the project up to another level. I will begin by seeking out various ways to receive input commands to make the database function as seamlessly as possible.

Here are some links I might be exploring:

Namestorming

January 5, 2011

On the design side of things, I’ve been working with the name of the database. It won’t be too dominant in the project but it is still important to have a title. It will most likely only appear once on the preloader introduction page of the database with a brief description of the project and somewhere on the poster output as well.

I was originally working with:

Here is the new identity I have created:

I feel like this title better represents the “at-a-glance” concept of learning something simply and quickly. I also feel that this better incorporates the aesthetic of the database itself and gives you a preview of what you will be viewing.

Scroll Code Exploration (2)

January 5, 2011

Now that I have a better understanding about Actionscript3, I have looked at every scroll image tutorial I gathered in my previous post in greater detail. Parts of the code make a lot of sense and work in the way I imagined they would so I will have to take aspects of them to use for my project.

Unfortunately all of the examples I have managed to find are for image galleries and call on external XML files to populate the flash file. In my case I will not be using photos and I was expecting to create and include the vector symbols within the flash file rather than in an external XML. Having a folder of images may work for under a dozen images but for this database, I will have to work on tweaking the code to work in this new way.

I may only be able to take inspiration from existing code and have to create it entirely from scratch which could be beneficial for future work. At least I know if I have to resort to loading external images, I will be able to have a fully working database.

ActionScript3 Tutorials

January 5, 2011

This is an update on my coding progress. I have become more comfortable with Actionscript3, Here are some helpful tutorials that have helped me better grasp the coding language. 

Tutorial Review: The tutorial was very basic at points and the actual code learned will most likely not appear in my final piece but this tutorial definitely helped me get a sense on how to phrase functions and has allowed me to better imagine how to approach coming up with my code.

I also viewed this tutorial about creating simple buttons, although very basic, I now know I will be able to control the timeline in AS3, instead of just AS2 (which is very buggy in CS5.) Now once I get the scroll code working, people will definitely be able to click the icons and view the at-a-glance information.

Scroll Code Exploration

January 2, 2011

I have decided to further pursue actionscript 3 in flash. The initial tutorials I have looked at have been intimidating but I am hoping to get some working code shortly. Also I have tried some AS2 that has usually worked for me in the past but for some reason it does not work on my current computer system. (pc cs3 -> mac cs5)

Here are some of the tutorials for scrolling images I have been looking into:

• http://www.ultrashock.com/forum/viewthread/122686/

http://active.tutsplus.com/tutorials/effects/create-a-responsive-xml-image-scroller-in-actionscript-3-0/

http://activeden.net/item/zoom-horizontal-image-scroll-menu-as2-and-as3/127108
http://www.republicofcode.com/tutorials/flash/imagegallery/