Embedding Sound with Flash, Part I: The Basics
Flash Editor, Player, and File Format
One of the ways to facelift your page is to add sound to it. One of the most (if not the most) popular players for the Web is Flash. Flash is a media player for the Web. In fact, 96% of all surfers in the world have the Flash player. Download the Flash player if you haven't done so already. Flash players can read SWF (pronounced as "swiff") files.
You can create SWF files with Macromedia Flash. Flash is the key to designing and delivering low-bandwidth animations, presentations, and Web sites. It offers scripting capabilities and server-side connectivity for creating engaging applications, Web interfaces, and training courses. Macromedia Flash combines the precision and flexibility of vector graphics with bitmaps, audio, animation, and advanced interactivity to create brilliant and effective Web experiences that attract and engage visitors. Macromedia Flash creates a Flash file (
.fla). You usually work with Flash files until you are done creating the new application. Only then can you create an SWF file to be played on the Web. You cannot use SWF files for further editing with Macromedia Flash, but only for Web playback.
The SWF (pronounced 'swiff') file format was designed especially for delivery of graphics and sounds over the Internet. It was not designed as a graphic format to be exchanged between graphic editors. It was designed as a very efficient delivery format. The SWF file can be generated by the Flash editor, similarly to the FLA native flash format. You cannot simply load an SWF file into the Flash editor for modifications, because you may lose information during the process. The name SWF came from the previous-generation player, Shock Wave.
Next: How to maneuver an SWF file