I recently worked on a very cool Flash project for Truman State University’s new website redesign. They wanted to have a photo slideshow on the homepage that could be dynamically created through a web form. Basically anyone can upload a photo, a caption and a link to the website/story corresponding to the headline/photo. When this form is submitted, the slideshow will automatically include the photo with caption/link
Here’s a breakdown of what we had to use/implement:
- Flash Actionscript which creates dynamic movie clips.. including code that would set a drop shadow, embed the correct font and set the placement of the text on the photo
- A corresponding XML file that Flash pulls info from… this file also specifies the length of each slide, and how slow the fading occurs
- An ASP email form/upload script which dynamically creates an XML file by first storing the data in a database
This is truly what Flash is meant to do. It isn’t meant to make meaningless welcome pages. The next generation of Flash is to incorporate ASP, PHP, Databases with it. No more of these pointless animations and all-flash websites.
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