The Companion Site for the Book ActionScript 3.0 Game Programming University

 
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Looking for examples of Flash games? Try the free Flash games at GameScene.com and the iPhone games at MacMost.com.
Gary Rosenzweig and William Follet introduce the FlashGameU.com Web site and podcast.


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Transcript:
G: Hi and welcome to the first podcast of Flash Game University, http://flashgameu.com. I'm Gary Rosenzweig and with me here is William Follett.
W: Hello.
G: We're going to start off by doing a short series of audio podcasts about http://flashgameu.com, about the book, ActionScript 3.0 Game Programming University by me.

W: And I did the artwork.
G: And Will did a lot of the illustrations. We'll start with, I want to do a series here, I want to talk about the website, and then in future episodes talk about the book, give a little background about myself, and also talk about ActionScript 3, especially as a game development platform. So, in this episode I really just want to talk about the website.
W: Okay.
G: It's http://flashgameu.com.
W: That's right.
G: It's a place for Flash game developers to come.
W: To learn. I mean this is a place of learning.
G: It is an institution, yes. Let's see, we've got a lot of stuff. There's forums, there's a blog and everything. In addition to being this general community, it really starts out as a place about the book, which should be out at the end of August (2007).
W: That's right. It's full of tutorials.
G: Yeah.
W: How to make the games and the concepts behind them.
G: Right. It's an ActionScript 3.0 game programming book.
W: Yeah.
G: From Cue and there's links on the site already to pre-order it. I think August 28th is what http://amazon.com says, when they'll have it.
W: After that, you can look for it in a store near you.
G: Right.
W: I usually see your books in Barnes & Noble.
G: Yeah.
W: That's where I shop for books.
G: Sure. Yeah, I know I've seen them in Barnes & Noble, Borders, independent stores.
W: Anywhere.
G: They're mass distributed through Pearson, which owns Cue.
W: They're everywhere.
G: Right.
W: I imagine you'll get a load of them just for your own bookshelf.
G: No, they only send you ten.
W: Only ten? Okay.
G: Yeah, but well ten, but you know then all of these people, you've got to give some to your parents, and then you give some to like, you know and you'll get one because you did the illustrations.
W: Oh, will you sign it for me?
G: Oh sure.
W: And then I'll sign it for me too.
G: Sure. So, it's about that time, I'm going to talk about in the next episode talk about the book and go into detail about all of the different things, how the chapters work, and what's in the book exactly.
W: Okay.
G: So there's stuff, so you can find the source files, for instance, for the book, obviously, the source code files, .fla's and .as files. And they'll be on the website, they already are on the website actually.
W: So you can see step by step?
G: Well yeah. You don't have to type in all the code yourself.
W: Oh, you mean copy and paste?
G: Yeah, no type. Well no, you can actually open the files in Flash 9.
W: Oh, of course.
G: In Flash CS3. In addition to having that stuff about the book, and also be a section for like errata and stuff like that, like when there's something I want to point out in a chapter, or add to a chapter, or correct, because these books get published quite quickly.
W: There might be a better way of doing it.
G: There might be a semicolon when there should be a colon. You know, you never know.
W: No, no, just a better way of doing it.
G: A better way of doing it. So, there's that. There's also a blog on the site. So, here's what I've got in the past, you know I've written quite a few books and I want to talk about that in episode 3 about the books I've written. So, I get a lot of email from people, you know.
W: Probably a lot of questions.
G: Questions about things in the book, 'How do I do this?' 'I don't understand this, what you're saying here' or whatever. And in the past I've answered them just by responding to that person. That's not very web 2.0.
W: No, it's not.
G: There's no community there, right? It's one to one. And then the same person might ask me the same question a year later and I don't even remember the answer let alone you know what...I have to rewrite the whole thing and look at it again. But if I actually do it as a blog, so somebody emails me a question, they can do it as a contact form on the site, just click on the "Ask Gary" thing, and then I can respond on the website and they can get the answer and then others can share in the answer as well. Because if like two or three people ask me the same question you can bet there's another 30 or 40 that maybe don't ask me the question but are looking for the answer.
W: Or maybe they're too shy to ask.
G: Maybe.
W: They want to know but they don't want to seem stupid by asking, so they'll let someone else.
G: Or maybe they just don't...sometimes it's like 'I don't have time to email and get a response, I need to figure this out now.' But if you go the website and it's like, 'Oh, the answer's right there,' you've got it. So, there's that. There's going to be articles. I'm going to write some new articles, maybe ideas I have for things that didn't quite make the book or new techniques and things like that.
W: That's right.
G: I'll add those to the site.
W: New techniques to make better games.
G: Sometimes there's a fuzzy gray line between blog post and an article. You know blog posts can grow and grow. Well I already have one up on the website about how to create a button the ActionScript 3 way, and that could almost have been an article. But, so there'll be that. There's going to be this podcast and this podcast is going to actually be more than just audio, it's going to be video and audio. So these first four episodes we are going to do are audio, just introducing things about the website and the book and myself. And then I'm actually going to be putting video tutorials there. So, I'll be doing screen captures as I talk you through a technique in ActionScript 3. So, this podcast will be a multimedia podcast that will just grow and change in different directions.
W: Are you using Flash in anyway to do this podcast?
G: No, no. The podcast itself, of course, has to be QuickTime. That's how podcasts work.
W: Not even Flash video?
G: No, you'll be able to actually view them, we'll be using http://blip.tv to do it. So, you'll be able to view them on the website as Flash video of course. So, there's that. There's also forums. There's a community forum. So, if you don't want to ask me a question, but want to ask the community a question, you can go ahead to the forums and post it. That could be really useful to get multiple opinions on different things, get quick responses, because on forums people ten to respond very quickly.
W: Meet people and let people know who you are.
G: Exactly. So, there's already forums there that you can post to, and you can be a part of this community, which I hope will grow here at http://flashgameu.com.
W: A member of the student body.
G: Yes, a member of the student body, or maybe perhaps if you've participated enough, a member of the faculty.
W: That's right.
G: I don't know if we can drive this metaphor really far.
W: We could.
G: You can join one of the student organizations.
W: I'm really holding myself back, I can't tell you.
G: Yeah, I know. Our football team this year is not quite, but we're hoping to draft a good quarterback.
W: The Flashkins.
G: I hope everything cross breeds. Like I hope maybe an "Ask Gary" question turns into a podcast or a forum post gets featured on the blog or in an article and things go back and forth. As the dean of Flash Game University I plan to help make that happen. To keep adding more and more to the site as time goes by and everything. That's really all I want to say about the website. Get things going, start posting to the forum, start asking me questions, and in our next episode I'll talk more about the book. We'll talk to you then. Bye.
W: Bye.