[thelist] Flash results table

Og Site mindmachine at hotmail.com
Sat Aug 30 22:30:22 CDT 2003

Greetings.  I have done exactly what your trying to do numerous times.  
Everything is quite simple, the only real issue is ensuring the alignment of 
each tables content as the content changes from long to short.  Here are the 
essential steps.

What we will do is place each fields content in an MC.  This MC will contain 
a text field which is a variable, and an invisible button (a button with 
only a hit state and no other content on the other frames).  Based on the 
number of records you display, we will replicate this MC, each time filling 
it with new content from your text file.

Note: this step by step is going to assume some level of actionscript and 
Flash usage.

1.  Create the Mc that we will use to hold the contents of each record.  In 
order to ensure that all content lines up use a different text field for 
each field of information.  Think of this MC as the row, and each of your 
text fields represent the columns.  Save this MC to your library object, 
right click it in the library and set the linkage name to "recordMC".  We 
will use this identifier to load it from the library in our movie.

2. Now we need a frame of actionscript.  We will start with a stop command 
because we can do everything here on the one frame.  By the way, I'm typing 
this from my parents place at the moment so my actionscript references will 
be explained, but I won't be typing the code.  What we are going to do on 
this frame is stop the movie and load the variables from the text file.  One 
of the tricks of loading variables from external sources is knowing when the 
flash player has recieved all of the information.  The most common method is 
to use an on.Data() command which is triggered the moment the flash files 
starts to recieve the requested data.  Inside the on.Data() function we want 
to put an on.EnterFrame().  We do this because although the onData() command 
will notice when information has started to load into the flash environment, 
it does not know when all the needed data has been loaded.  So what we need 
to do put a final variable in the text file, a variable which we will check 
until it has value.  I use a isDone variable at the end of my text files.  
The key is to set the isDone variable in flash to something like "Null", 
then set it's value in the text file to something like "Done".  So we can 
loop with the onEnterFrame() function using an if..then statement.  If 
isDone <> "null" Then delete this.onEnterFrame and continue.  So our movie 
stops, sets the isDone variable to "Null", then requests the variables from 
the text file, once data starts coming in our movie triggers the 
this.onData() function which jumps into the this.onEnterFrame, which waits 
until the last variable "isDone" does not equal 'null' (which means all data 
has been loaded and we can continue).  The next step is to create a for.. 
Next loop.  It should read like this

For i = 1, while i <= your_total_fields
attatch Movie to 'this', using the MC linked name "recordMC", and calling 
the new one something like "recordMC" & i (which will create a new name for 
each of the newly created movies)
// then set the variables in the newly created movie
Set ("recordMC" & i) & ".field1" = value from text file
Set ("recordMC" & i) & ".field2" = value from text file
Set ("recordMC" & i) & ".field3" = value from text file
//then we need to position them, we will do this by multiplying each movies 
Y position by i * the total height of the recordMC
set property Y, 0 + (i * the_height_of_recordMC)

So what happens is, we attach a new version of the original record Mc to our 
movie, then we set the variables inside the newly created recordMC.  Then 
using the height of the recordMC we multiply that by i, which means they 
will list evenly from top to bottom.  Now each of these recordMC's has the 
button in it which you can make do whatever you want.  I realize this is 
quick and dirty, but the idea is there and I'll be happy to provide you with 
source files of work I've previous to help illustrate the system better.

Good luck.. I hope I was more helpful than confusing... I hope ;).

>From: "Mark Joslyn" <Mark.Joslyn at SolimarSystems.com>
>Reply-To: Mark.Joslyn at SolimarSystems.com, 
>"thelist at lists.evolt.org"<thelist at lists.evolt.org>
>To: "Evolt \(E-mail\)" <thelist at lists.evolt.org>
>Subject: [thelist] Flash results table
>Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 14:01:51 -0700
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>I am currently developing a Flash MX application that will display the
>results of three different arrays.  This application cannot use any program
>languages(ASP, PHP, etc.) or connect to a database. Thus, the reason for 
>arrays. (By the way - is using arrays the best solution to simulate 
>The arrays are loaded from an external .txt file. I have explored the
>possibility of dynamically creating movieclips and textFields. I got this
>working correctly, but with all the different depths, targeting where the
>mouse clicked was impossible.
>How can I display the results in a table format (rows and columns)? Also,
>each result would need to be clickable. Are there any good tutorials about
>this out there? I can't seem to find them - all I found was how to import
>HTML tables into Flash - not exactly what I want.
>Any help would be appreciated.
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