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Working with Shockwave

As you've learned, a Shockwave movie is a Director movie converted for playback in a Web browser. Another notable feature: A Shockwave movie file includes all internal casts but can't embed external casts, which must be provided separately in the Shockwave format. (Director's Publish command creates Shocked external casts for you automatically, in addition to the other Shockwave-related files.) Any linked cast members, such as QuickTime movies, must also be provided separately.

After you create a Shockwave movie, you must embed it in an HTML file so that a Web browser can play it. (Web browsers can't open Shockwave movies directly. Director can create the HTML file for you automatically, with all necessary tags (Figure 2) to display the movie in a browser. You also can use a program such as Dreamweaver to insert a Shockwave movie and to further customize the HTML document for other content on the Web page.

Figure 2

After you create a Shockwave movie, you embed it in an HTML file so that a Web browser can play it. Director's Publish command can generate such a file for you automatically.

While users watch your Shockwave movie, they can right-click (Control+click, on the Mac) the browser window to display a context menu that contains various playback commands (Figure 3). The available choices are determined by the playback settings in the Shockwave tab of the Publish Settings dialog box.

Figure 3

Right-click (Control+click, on the Mac) in a browser window while a Shockwave movie is playing to display a context menu with various playback commands. (Noisecrime's GTA, created by Noisecrime)

A Shockwave movie's data is compressed to help minimize download times. Shockwave movies also are protected, in that they lack the data that would allow users to open and edit them in Director. Shockwave movies can be viewed in a browser when the Shockwave Player has been installed, or they can be played back by a projector or another Shockwave movie. A Shockwave movie can't embed the player, so you can't make a stand-alone Shockwave movie, like a projector file, that runs all by itself.

 Tip

• Some people create Shockwave versions of their movies even if they plan to distribute them on disk or other non-Internet means. That's because Shockwave movies offer the convenience of being compressed and protected.

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