Text plays a big part in many Flash projects, and you can put it there in a few ways. As explained on Text Questions, you can use the Text tool to create text fields and then alter the text’s appearance using the Properties panel. But if you want your text to undergo changes over the course of an animation, you need the power of ActionScript. This chapter shows you how to use ActionScript to edit, format, and manipulate text fields as your animation runs. First, you need to know about font embedding, to ensure that your audience sees exactly the typefaces you specify. Then, to edit text on the fly, you’ll learn how to add and remove characters from strings of text. The remainder of the chapter explains how to create text fields using ActionScript and how to format and animate text.
When you create your Flash masterpiece, you use the fonts installed on your computer. Dozens of fonts show up in the Properties→Character→Family list. Franklin Gothic or French Script, anyone? Whenever a program like Flash needs a font, it gets the font description from the file on your computer. Font files mathematically describe the outlines of each character. Flash uses this description to display type at all different sizes, just like resizing a vector image (Adding an Imported Sound to a Frame (or Series of Frames)).
When your project is finished and you publish it, you create an SWF file (Publishing Your Animations