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📄 Contents

  1. You're a Geek, and You're Boring
  2. Installing and Using the Annoying CD-ROM Extras
  3. Yep, It's That Easy
  4. The Reminders
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Installing and Using the Annoying CD-ROM Extras

So you got your hands on Flash MX 2004 and installed it. Good for you. Did you remember to install the FLV Exporter that was on the CD-ROM? No? Go do it now. I'll wait.

The FLV Exporter is a plug-in for video editing applications, such as Adobe Premiere and Apple Final Cut Pro, that enables you to export .flv (Flash Video) files, which can be streamed into the Flash Player using either ActionScript you write yourself (yay!) or any one of the Media components. When you have it installed, create the QuickTime movie (about 3Mb) by downloading the questions.fla file, and open it. Then do the following:

  1. Open questions.fla.

  2. Choose File > Export Movie.

  3. In the Export Movie dialog box, name the file questions.mov and choose "QuickTime Video" from the Format menu. Save it to your desktop. Clicking Save opens the Export QuickTime Video dialog box.

  4. In the Export QuickTime Video dialog box, set the dimensions to 440 x 125, choose "24 bit color" from the Format menu, "Sorenson Video 3" from the Compressor menu, and "44kHz 8 bit Stereo" from the Sound format menu. Then click OK.

  5. When the export is complete, close questions.fla.

Now, we can get on with streaming the video. To do this:

  1. Watch the QuickTime video with the QuickTime Player. It's pretty cool—I made it myself. Don't redistribute it, though—it's copyrighted material.

  2. When you're done, choose File > Export to open the Save Exported File As dialog box.

  3. Choose Movie to Macromedia Flash Video (FLV) from the Export menu and name the file questions.flv.

  4. Click the Options button next to the Export menu, shown in Figure 1, to open the Flash Video Exporter dialog box.

  5. Figure 1Figure 1 Oooooh...options. We like options.

  6. For Encoding Method, choose Best (2 Pass).

  7. For Frames Per Second, choose Same as Source.

  8. From the Quality menu, choose High. This automatically sets the data rate to 660 kilobits per second.

  9. Choose Auto from the Keyframes menu to set the keyframe frequency to 120 frames.

  10. Choose Better from the Motion Estimation menu. All these options ensure the video will look good after being compressed into an .flv file.

  11. From the Bitrate menu, choose 96 kbits/sec (Stereo) so the video sounds good, too.

  12. In the Other section, make sure that the width and height are set at 100%. Your dialog box should match Figure 2.

  13. Figure 2xFigure 2 The FLV Exporter: one cool plug-in.

  14. Click OK to close the dialog box.

  15. Navigate to your desktop and click Save to create questions.flv.

The export process may take awhile. Be patient. In the meantime, maybe you could go fix yourself a sandwich. I could use one, too, since you're up.

When the export is done, and questions.flv is sitting on your desktop, check the file size. The original QuickTime movie is more than 3Mb, but the .flv is only 1Mb. I know. It's cool.

Now it's time for Flash.

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