What Is Flash

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's November 2001

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What is Flash Flash, developed by Macromedia, is used to design and deliver low-bandwidth animations, presentations, and Web sites with high-impact and vector-based animation. Flash also gives people the ability to import artwork using whatever bitmap or illustration tool they prefer, and to create animation and special effects, and to add scripting capabilities and server-side connectivity engaging Web interfaces, applications, and etc. The content is saved as file with a .SWF file name extension which is compact, efficient, and designed for optimized delivery. Flash is resizable file format that is small enough to stream across a normal modem connection.

According to an independent study cited by Macromedia, 97.4 percent of Web users will be able to view it with the Flash.

Installing Flash To actually create Flash content, you need to own a copy of Macromedia Flash (~$300 USD full 4.0 version and ~$400 USD full 5.0 version) or you can download your free, 30-day trial of Flash at Macromedia website (http://www.macromedia.com/software/flash/trial/).

Installing Flash on either a Windows or a Macintosh computer: 1. Insert the Flash 5 CD into the computer's CD-ROM drive.

2. In Windows, choose Start > Run. Click Browse and choose the Setup.exe file on the Flash 5 CD. Click OK in the Run dialog box to begin the installation.

On the Macintosh, double-click the Flash 5 Installer icon.

3. Follow the onscreen instructions.

4. If prompted, restart your computer.

Note: To view Flash content online, you don't need to install Flash but need the free web browser plugin to view the shockwave (*.swf) file. To view a downloadable, self-executable version (e.g. *.exe, *.sit), both Flash and plugin are not required.

What you should know to use Flash To effectively use Flash for instructional purposes (or just to design an amazing web page) you should have...

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