Simple things: Multiple swfs playing simultaneously = bad

Rats. This is an easy one, but it’s always the simple things. The problem: My flash animation is playing absurdly slow. Go to my Erie Canal interactive map: It’s a travelling bot, that follows a randomly drawn path. In this case, the “boat” should travel along the Erie Canal in a nice smooth fashion. The problem is that it travels slowly, and the movement is jerky and pulsating.

The solution: A simple thing actually. One of my “canal features” (things users can click) is a lock. The lock symbol contained an animation (user rolls over the lock, and user then sees the animation). The animation was playing all the time (as movieclips do). MovieClips play independently of the mainTimeLine and naturally loop. So the solution was to place a stop() on frame 1 to prevent the animation from playing. That’s it.

Simple rule of thumb: Multiple simultaneous animations in Flash is too taxing on the Flash engine/CPU. So try to keep multiple simultaneous animations to a minimum.

Now, if you’ve been working in Flash, you’ve heard this rule a bunch of times. And yet, it still pops up to bite you. Bit me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>