This chapter explores visual effects that can be applied to your Flex applications. Fades, glows, resizes, animations, and so on are all examples of visual effects that are available to you within the Flex framework. Visual effects are important components of your development toolbox because they can add additional levels of interactivity, "sex appeal," and "stickiness" to your application's user experience.
In the most basic of senses, an "effect" is a perceptible change to an object. This definition doesn't provide much information by itself, so let's look closer at what it means to be an effect. A perceptible change to an object can really be anything; it can be movement, resize, fade, color change, blur, or even an audible sound. Flex effects are classes that allow you to easily control these perceptible changes over time. The controlled changes over time create animations, which in turn allow you to augment your applications with enhanced interactivity.
Effects are often essential to the user experience and can be the differentiator in the style and stickiness of an application. Stickiness refers to the ability of your application to keep users engaged. Properly designed effects can help make your application more engaging and fun to work with, even if it doesn't handle a "fun" topic.
All Flex components that extend from
UIComponent can have effects applied to them through triggers. Triggers allow you to trigger an effect when an ...