7 Replies Latest reply on Aug 7, 2006 4:19 PM by twistedpancreas

    Recommend me a AS2 book.

    twistedpancreas Level 1
      Can anyone recommend a designer (who isn't a Actionscript genus, but knows the basics) on a good book that teaches AS2 in a sensible and step by step way?

      Covering things like arrays, random numbers, and anything at that level.

      Or is it not appropriate to ask here?
        • 1. Re: Recommend me a AS2 book.
          Level 7
          twistedpancreas,

          > Can anyone recommend a designer (who isn't a
          > Actionscript genus, but knows the basics) on a
          > good book that teaches AS2 in a sensible and
          > step by step way?

          I can tell you books that have made sense to me. ;)

          > Covering things like arrays, random numbers, and
          > anything at that level.

          To my thinking, those *are* the basics, so if you need those explained,
          that's fine -- nothing to be ashamed of -- but it leaves me wondering what
          your comfort level is, then. What do *you* consider the basics you already
          know?

          > Or is it not appropriate to ask here?

          Perfectly fine to ask. This is the ActionScript forum. :)

          One of the most significant breakthroughs for me was when I realized how
          to best approach the ActionScript Language Reference. It seemed so huge, I
          often found myself thinking, "Jeez, where do I even begin?" But a large
          portion of it all falls into place when you understand that just about
          everything in ActionScript is an object, and that objects are defined by
          their (usually) namesake classes. Movie clip symbols -- the ones you draw
          and convert to movie clips -- are defined by the MovieClip class. Dynamic
          and input text fields are defined by the TextField class. Buttons, sounds,
          arrays ... you name it, they're all defined by classes. Generally speaking,
          classes describe three facets of the object: its properties, methods, and
          events. Properties are the attributes an object has; methods are the things
          it can do; events are the things it can react to. For the most part, one or
          more of these categories is described for every class in the ActionScript
          2.0 Language Reference.

          So if you're dealing with a movie clip, look up "MovieClip class" in the
          Language Reference. If you're dealing with a text field, look up "TextField
          class," and so on.

          That will take you through arrays, and even random numbers (the
          Math.random() method of the Math class).

          See if these three articles give you a good start (link below), then
          write back and give me a feel for what your comfort level is with
          ActionScript. We'll see what book(s) might make the best sense to you.

          http://www.quip.net/blog/first-time-here/


          David Stiller
          Adobe Community Expert
          Dev blog, http://www.quip.net/blog/
          "Luck is the residue of good design."


          • 2. Re: Recommend me a AS2 book.
            Level 7
            twistedpancreas wrote:
            > Can anyone recommend a designer (who isn't a Actionscript genus, but knows the
            > basics) on a good book that teaches AS2 in a sensible and step by step way?

            You might want to take a look at "Foundation ActionScript for Flash 8".
            Disclaimer: I'm one of the authors, so am highly biased. However, it's
            designed for complete beginners with ActionScript, and takes you to a
            high intermediate level. It's the fourth edition of a book originally
            written by Sham Bhangal, and brought right up to date. More details here:

            http://foundationphp.com/flash8_as/

            --
            David Powers
            Adobe Community Expert
            Author, "Foundation PHP for Dreamweaver 8" (friends of ED)
            http://foundationphp.com/
            • 3. Re: Recommend me a AS2 book.
              twistedpancreas Level 1
              Thanks guys.

              Looks like my AS knowledge is less than I thought.

              My background is mainly from a design and animation point of view, but I have used Flash from around Flash 3, but just using basic code for navigating with buttons, or setting up print buttons, or having code to setup browser sizes, etc, etc....

              So it looks like I will probably need to start from the start, because, David Stiller, you're article was very informative and has begun to get my left side of my brain working again :)

              So hopefully that will help you, help me, to find the right book :D

              Thanks so far!
              • 4. Recommend me a AS2 book.
                WebXperience Level 1
                Don't know if this would be of interest to you or not. But since you mentioned that you come from an animation background, try "ActionScript animation." I recently purchased the book and I am being blown away by its content. Go to a Barnes & Noble or some other bookstore and browse through the pages and see what I mean.

                Also, I don't know if your using Flash 8 or are still like me using Flash MX 2004, two books that were really helpful to me were "Flash MX 2004: Hand-On Training" and "Flash MX 2004: Beyond the Basics." I believe there are Flash 8 versions out too. Also, everything I've ever tried from the TRAINING FROM THE SOURCE series, published by Macromedia Press has been great and the lessons and sample exercises were really good.

                Well, 'nuf said. Hope this helps. Have fun reading!
                Take Care!
                • 5. Re: Recommend me a AS2 book.
                  Level 7
                  twistedpancreas,

                  > So it looks like I will probably need to start from
                  > the start, because, David Stiller, you're article was
                  > very informative and has begun to get my left side
                  > of my brain working again :)

                  Thanks! To my thinking, you should aim for a book that was written
                  recently and covers ActionScript from an object-oriented approach. If you
                  search online, you may, for example, find the temptingly titled "Flash MX
                  ActionScript for Designers," which seems perfect for someone like you,
                  right? The thing is, this book was good in its day (2002), but the text
                  covers ActionScript that is now two versions old. It uses on() and
                  onClipEvent() for buttons and movie clips, which may seem good on the
                  surface, but isn't the *current* way to ground yourself in the language.

                  > So hopefully that will help you, help me, to find the
                  > right book :D

                  I've known David Powers for a while, now. He's very knowledgeable about
                  Adobe products, and Flash is no exception. You may very well find his
                  "Foundation ActionScript for Flash 8," which he posted himself in reply, a
                  good introduction. This book was originally written by Sham Bhangal, whose
                  "Flash Hacks" book I own and appreciate.

                  You may also want to consider "Object-Oriented ActionScript for Flash
                  8," by Peter Elst and Todd Yard. Yard co-authored a separate book with
                  Keith Peters, who wrote the book WebXperience recommended, "Foundation
                  ActionScript Animation: Making Things Move!" I own the animation book,
                  too, and love it -- but I really think you'll get more out of the Peters
                  book if you ground yourself in a general programming reference first.


                  David Stiller
                  Adobe Community Expert
                  Dev blog, http://www.quip.net/blog/
                  "Luck is the residue of good design."


                  • 6. Re: Recommend me a AS2 book.
                    twistedpancreas Level 1
                    Thanks, someone on another forum also recommended me "Essential guide to actionsript 2" by Coolin Moock

                    Would this be ok for a beginner or are you're suggestions more on track?
                    • 7. Re: Recommend me a AS2 book.
                      twistedpancreas Level 1
                      OOOh weird, multiple posts coming from everywhere!!!

                      What happened?

                      Ok so I might go with David Powers "Foundation ActionScript for Flash 8", now to find an Aussie distributor :)

                      Thanks guys