Unit 3.  The Working Environment (II)



The Timeline represents a simple mode of visualization. It consists of two parts:

1) The Frames that are limited by vertical lines (forming rectangles)

2) The Numbers of frames that allow us to know the assigned number of each frame, its duration and when it will appear in the movie.

Moreover, there are some tools on the bottom to work with Onion paper and its information about the Number of current frame (1 in the image), the frame Speed (12.0 in the image) and the Time of the movie (0.0 in the image).

On the definition level, the Timeline represents the succession of frames in the Time. The Flash movie will be only the frames that appear on the Timeline one after another in the order established by the same Timeline

In order to know more about the Timeline and the different types of frames that exist visit our Advanced Page

The Layers


The concept of the Layer is basic to manage Flash efficiently. Because of its importance we will dedicate an entire unit to it. Even so, let's see a great characteristics of the layers.

A Layer could be defined as one independent movie of only one level. That is to say, one layer contains its own Timeline (with endless frames)

The objects that are at one Layer share a frame and due to this fact they can "get mixed up" among themselves. Frequently it could be interesting, but other times it is convenient to separate the objects in order that they do not interfere among them. For this, we will create as many layers as necessary. Furthermore the use of many layers gives place to a good-ordered movie and of easy use (for example, it is convenient to fix the sounds at one independent layer called "Sounds"). We will see the advantages and disadvantages of using layers in the Unit 8.

The Working Area

The Working Area consists of numerous parts, let's see them:

The most important part is the Stage, we will draw and fix different elements of our movie. The Stage has very important properties, due to the fact that they coincide with Document Properties, in order to access them, right-click on anywhere on the Stage with no objects and then on Document Properties:

Dimensions: They fix the size of the movie. The smallest size is of 1 x 1 px (pixels) and the biggest one is of 2880 x 2880 px.

Match: It causes the coincidence of the movie with the selected size

Background Color: The color selected here will be the one of the entire movie.

Frame Rate: Or the number of frames per second that appear at the movie.

Ruler units: Unit used to measure the quantities.

Make Default: This button was added in this version of Flash, allows to store the properties of the current document and to apply them to all the new created documents from this moment. These properties could be changed from this panel whenever you wish them to.

In order to practice these operations, we advise you to do Exercise Change Properties of the Movie


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