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Well, I’m attempting to learn to make flash but (so i’ve been told) it is a lot easier to learn actionscript from books than it is to learn it from the web. Does anyone have an good suggestion for books?
I bought the “Flash Bible” mainly out of curiously. It’s pretty good, covers most stuff. Books will make you remember better since your foreced to type the script instead of copy and paste, but can be tedious of course.
I can’t really say ones better then the other, there both interesting ways of learning.
The book is good for reading when your away from your computer bored with spare time and want to learn.
I like Essential ActionScript by Moock. He just came out with a 3.0 version, but I use 2.0 and it’s really good. The Flash ActionScript Bible is really nice too, great for reference (this appears to be a companion to the Flash Bible Eggy mentioned, though I’ve never read that one so I can’t comment on its usefulness. But if it’s written as well as the AS Bible, them I’m sure it’s great [and one of the authors is the same, so I’m guessing it is]).
I think that books are good to start out. Once you feel comfortable, then the web is indispensable. The problem with the web is it’s really hard to find the very basics and most anywhere will assume you have some knowledge.
Flash CS3 (9) is actually the newest version but go ahead and get 8 if you can get a good deal on it. If you’re a student though, there are some excellent places to find fantastic prices on the newest version though (and Photoshop, etc.).
8 and 9 look pretty much the same, although I only got a chance to try out 8 for a few days. The only major difference from what I have seen between the two programs is that AS3 is introduced in Flash 9.
Actually, the development environment for Flash 9 has been changed a lot. Some for the better, some for the worse.
Flash 8 might be the way to go for beginners though. There are more resources and its easier to learn AS2. Only start AS3 and Flash 9 if you want to jump into the latest and greatest. Though the upside to Flash 9 is you can still create Flash 8 content with it.
Much like you masta, I’ve also been trying to teach myself Flash in my spare time. I purchased a copy of Flash several weeks ago (because I was buying Photoshop and Illustrator anyway and I figured that I may as well get the Design Premium pack for just a little more).
Anyway, I’ve been going through older books written for Flash 8 and various tutorials I’ve found online for additional AS2 techniques, and they have all carried over very well to Flash 9. Sure, there are a few differences here in there with the location of various menus and such, but most of the meat and potatoes of the program seem to be in roughly the same location.
Like I said though, I’m no expert with Flash like arcaneCoder is, but from my limited experience over the past few weeks, there is no problem using the tips and techniques that you’ll pick up from books and tutorials with Flash 9 – as long as you make sure that you make your files using AS2 instead of AS3. Of course, I’m just delving into the most basic stuff at this point, but it doesn’t seem too difficult to pick up at this point.
luckily for me, writing code is the least of my worries. It comes naturally to me for some reason. I currently know a great deal of java programming and from the little I have learned, I figured out it is alike in a lot of ways, such as System.out.println() turns into trace() or instead of actually putting a specific data type on a variable (i.e. String word, int number, char letter, etc.) you can just type a variable name. I think, once I get the hold of AS2, I will be able to easily jump into AS3, the only problem is the fact that I’m horrible at animation, lol. I recently also bought the Flash Bible and so far that is helping me out a great deal. I find it quite comprehensive, eventhough its a little hard to jump into (the size is almost intimidating).
ArcaneCoder, I noticed you quoted me about flash bible (in the sticky). Just wanted to add a correction – I had seen Eggy’s comment and gotten mixed up. The book I meant was Flash 8 ActionScript Bible by Joey Lott and Robert Reinhardt. I hadn’t realize there was a Flash Bible and a Flash ActionScript Bible. As I’ve never read the former, I feel disingenuous giving a recommendation for it. Sorry about the mix up.
Note: I’ve also edited my post above, but wanted to add this here so you’d be more likely to see it.
As for the AS Bible, it’s a great reference tool. It covers nearly every aspect of AS in great detail. It really complements well any “learning” book as it helps fill in any gaps you might come across.