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Manual - Working with Menus


Add a Menu to your Project
Designing your Menu
Manipulating Objects on your Menu
Menu Templates
Sub-Menus
Advanced Menus
 
Add a Menu to your Project

We'll continue using the same project as in the first part of the manual, where we added the Open a Document Action to our project and selected a PDF file. Now lets add a Menu to our project, to be opened after our PDF file is opened. Add a Menu to your project by pressing the Add Action button and choosing Open a new Menu. Give the Menu a name and locate the Menu after our PDF file as shown in the image below.

 
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The Menu Action will now be added to our project. Click on it in the workspace and you will be prompted to select a Menu Template. I'll just choose the Blank - 640x480 option to open up a blank Menu. Your window will now look like this:

 
 
Designing your Menu

Along the top of the Menu settings area are the Object Buttons which are shown below. The 12 buttons on the left will add objects to your Menu. The two buttons are the right are used to Duplicate and Delete the selected objects on your Menu. The 12 objects you can add to your Menu are listed:

Button - Used to execute Actions. You can specify up to 10 Actions to be executed when a Button is clicked
Label - Add a text label to your Menu, useful for headings
Image - Add an image to your Menu. Dozens of stock images are included royalty-free, or use your own
TextBox - Add paragraphs of text. You can format the text as well
DropDown Box - Works the the same as a Button, but saves space
List Box - Works the same as a Button, but saves space because it can scroll
Flash - Embed Flash Animations on your Menu
Web Page - Embed an Internet Explorer web page on your Menu
Music Player - Embed a Music Player on your Menu to play MP3 files
SlideShow - Embed a SlideShow of images (with optional music)
Video - Embed Videos on your Menu
Volume Control - Let the user adjust the volume of any music playing in your project

 
 

Let's add a Button to our Menu by clicking the Button Object button. To access an objects properties double-click on the object. In this case double-click on the Button just added and the Button Settings window will open up. Each object has it's own settings window.

NOTE: If you want to add a background image, or adjust the background of your Menu, just double-click on the Menu background. You can set a solid color for your Menu, a gradient, use an image, or generate a pattern.

 
 

Let's have this Button open our PDF brochure now. I'm going to change the Button Text, and add an Action to be executed when the Button is clicked by pressing the Add button in the Actions section. You have the same Actions to choose from as when adding an Action to your project workspace including a few more such as "Exit Menu". New Actions will also be added to the list if you have Flash, SlideShow, Video, Web Page, or Music Player objects on your Menu that allow you to control them. I'm going to add the Action to Open a Document and select my PDF file. I will also remove the Open a Document Action from my project workspace since I'm opening the PDF file from my Menu now. It should look like this:

 
 

You can see the "brochure.pdf" file is now listed under the Main Menu in the project workspace, indicating that the Action is part of the Menu.

 
Manipulating Objects on your Menu
 

Once you have objects added to your Menu you're going to want to adjust them. To move an object just select it with your mouse and click and drag the object. You can resize an object by clicking and dragging on a corner of the object.

You can also move an object by using the arrow keys, and size the object by holding down the SHIFT button and using the arrow keys.

When you have several objects on your Menu you will likely want to align the edges of the objects or space them evenly. To select multiple objects, click and drag a selection rectangle around the objects, or select the objects while holding down the CTRL button. When you have 2 or more objects selected you can use the Align buttons. When you have 3 or more objects selected you can use the Space buttons.

 
 

I'll go ahead and add some more Buttons to the Menu (using the Duplicate button), as well as an Image, a Label, and set the Menu background to a gradient. I'll also make my Buttons larger and align and space them evenly. As you can see a Menu comes together pretty quickly!

 
 
Menu Templates

Another way to create a Menu is by starting off with a Menu Template. You can select a template when you first create a Menu or at any time using the menubar under Menu Options.

You can also save any Menu as a template and add it to your template library for future use!

 
Adding Sub-Menus to your Menu

Adding a Sub-Menu is no different than adding any other Action, just use the Open a new Menu Action. You can create an entire hierarchy of Menus that the user can navigate through, you can even navigate back to existing Menus using the Open an Exisiting Menu Action.

 
Advanced Menus

- Buttons aren't the only objects that can launch Actions, List Boxes and DropDown Boxes can launch Actions exactly the same as Buttons.

- You can add up to 10 Actions to be performed instead of just one. For example you can have a Button open several documents, and update the contents of the TextBox all at the same time. Actions are executed in the list from top to bottom.

- When aligning objects the last object selected is the one the other objects align to.

- To center an object in the Menu select the object, then hold down the CTRL button while selecting the background object. Then press the Align button of your choice.

- You can lock an object to keep it from accidently being moved or sized by pressing the lock button in the top right hand corner of the object settings window.

- Click on the Menu Settings tab to adjust other Menu properties like the title bar text.

- The type of Actions you can choose from are determined by the objects on a Menu. If you add a Flash object to your Menu, you'll notice a few new Actions listed that allow you to control (Play, Pause, Close, etc) the Flash object.

- Actions can be opened into the Menu as well as in a new window. If you have a Web Page object on your Menu and you choose the Action Open a Web Page you can have it opened into a new browser window, or into the Web Page object on your Menu.

- You can add spacing to the items in your List Box and DropDown Box objects by adding blank items.


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