O’Reilly news

"Flash Hacks": How to Be the Flashiest Kid on the Hacker's Playground

July 9, 2004

Sebastopol, CA--"Flash lets the creative community explore what the Web can be: a cartoon network, a game platform, an OS-style environment for connected applications, an electronic art gallery, a video chat, a collaborative multi-user environment, a remote meeting room, an MP3 music player--or pretty much anything you can dream up," writes Colin Moock in the foreword to the new Flash Hacks (O'Reilly, US $24.95) by Sham Bhangal. "Flash is pervasively flexible, a veritable hacker's playground." And with the tips in this book up their sleeves, developers can play hard and be extra cool.

Flash is the most popular application for delivering multimedia over the Web. "Flash authoring is all about creativity, in both design and coding, and pushing the envelope of what is possible," says Bhangal. "I hope this book inspires the uninitiated to try Flash and those who know Flash to appreciate it anew."

Flash Hacks is for designers and scripters who want more than the average Flash user--to explore and experiment, unearth shortcuts, and create practical and useful tools. It's for those who challenge themselves to come up with fun and unusual things to try on their own as they use Flash technology to create compelling web content, expressive user interfaces, and rich applications for the Internet. And it's for anyone who consistently aims to achieve the seemingly impossible with the highly hackable Flash.

Covering Flash MX, Flash MX 2004, Flash MX Professional 2004, and ActionScript 2.0, Flash Hacks is packed with one hundred clever hacks and inside tricks--tried-and-true techniques and tools as well as completely original ideas--including:

  • Scripted and timeline-based visual effects, such as ripple and text effects
  • Advanced page-turning animation, particle effects, and simulating 3D
  • Flash speech synthesis and lip-synched animation
  • Performance and optimization tips for graphics, sound, text, video, and ActionScript
  • ActionScript tips galore, including how to find undocumented commands
  • Creating browser-friendly sites and using CSS within Flash
  • Protecting content from thievery
  • Readers needn't be Flash experts to put these creative tips and tools into immediate action (although they'll certainly look like experts when they do). They just need an adventuresome spirit, a desire to make their work faster, better, and more thrilling, and a passion for coming up with fresh and engaging ideas for Flash web designs, ActionScript, and Flash content.

    Additional Resources:

    Flash Hacks
    Sham Bhangal
    ISBN 0-596-00645-4, 466 pages, $24.95 US, $36.95 CA
    1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

    About O’Reilly

    O’Reilly Media spreads the knowledge of innovators through its books, online services, magazines, and conferences. Since 1978, O’Reilly Media has been a chronicler and catalyst of cutting-edge development, homing in on the technology trends that really matter and spurring their adoption by amplifying “faint signals” from the alpha geeks who are creating the future. An active participant in the technology community, the company has a long history of advocacy, meme-making, and evangelism.

    Email a link to this press release