Chapter 17. Timelines

In Chapter 14, we examined the behaviors used to manipulate layers. Timelines also allow us to manipulate layers (and images) over time. Timelines are a Dreamweaver convenience used to generate dynamic HTML (DHTML), as the combination of JavaScript, HTML, and CSS is often known. Timelines depend heavily on layers and therefore require Version 4.0+ browsers, and some features work only in Internet Explorer. However, over 95 percent of web site visitors use 4.0+ browsers, and most of those use IE4+ browsers.

Timelines Panel

Each frame of a timeline represents a moment in time, akin to a frame in a video; timeline frames have no relation to the HTML frames and framesets discussed in Chapter 4.

Timelines are manipulated in the Timelines panel, shown in Figure 17-1. To open the Timelines panel, use Window Timelines (Shift+F9).

The Timelines panel

Figure 17-1. The Timelines panel

A single HTML document can contain multiple timelines (use the Timelines pop-up menu in the Timelines panel to switch between them). The time axis runs from left to right; higher frame numbers represent later points in time. The playback head , shown in Figure 17-1 as a red rectangle and vertical line, indicates the current animation frame.

You can animate objects over time by adding them to the animation channels in a timeline. The duration of each object animation is indicated by an animation bar, which ...

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