Chapter 19. Testing and Debugging Your Animation

The odds are against you. When you’re designing an animation and writing ActionScript code, there may be several ways to do it and have it come out right. Unfortunately, there are many more ways you can do it wrong. Maybe you chose a motion tween when you meant to choose a shape tween, or you added content to a frame instead of a keyframe. In ActionScript, a tiny error like using a capital letter in the wrong place or misplaced semicolon can ruin everything. The more complex your project is, the more errors you’re likely to encounter.

The only way to find—and fix—your mistakes before your audience sees them is to test and debug your projects. Yes, troubleshooting can be tedious, time-consuming, and not nearly as much fun as designing and creating a brilliant animation. But if you approach troubleshooting as solving a puzzle or a mystery, it can be fun. Furthermore, Flash Professional CS5 comes with some pretty powerful testing and debugging tools to you help you find and squash those bugs.

Throughout this book, you’ve seen examples of testing an animation using the Control→Test Movie option (for example, Figure 19-5). This chapter expands on that simple test option, plus it shows you how to test animation playback at a variety of connection speeds. And if you’ve added ActionScript to your animation, this chapter shows you how to unsnarl uncooperative ActionScript code using Flash’s debugging tools.

Testing Strategies

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