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Web Design in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition by Jennifer Niederst Robbins

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Shockwave for Director

Macromedia’s Director software (which significantly predates the Web) has long been the industry standard for creating multimedia presentations appropriate for CD-ROMs and kiosk displays. Director movies incorporate images, motion, sound, interactive buttons, and even QuickTime movies. In 1996, Macromedia introduced the Shockwave system, which enabled Director movies to be played directly on web pages. While Flash is better suited for the Web, there are some functions that can only be done in Director. Following is a summary of Shockwave’s pros and cons.

Advantages

Shockwave has a number of attractive features:

  • It can use Lingo programming. Because Shockwave can be customized with Lingo programming, it offers functionality—such as the ability to remember user position, keep scores, “know” correct answers, and other games-related functions—that cannot be achieved with Flash. Lingo is a robust scripting environment that offers more control over object properties, list manipulation, and a more efficient development environment.

  • It has good compression. The Shockwave file format offers efficient compression ratios, compressing Director movies to 1/3 to 1/2 of their original size.

  • It has full-featured interactivity. Shockwave brings full CD-ROM-like interactivity to web pages.

  • It uses streaming technology. Shockwave movies begin playing very quickly and continue playing as they download so they can be pseudo-streamed from an HTTP server.

  • It has a well ...

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