The Xara Trompe L'Oeil Room  May 2001
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Creating a Glass Interface with Rollover Buttons

The past several weeks have witnessed a Renaissance of sorts in the Xara X Conference on the TalkGraphics site. One visual challenge after another has been posed by visitors to the site and the Xara community has risen to the challenge time and time again with often new and creative solutions to the challenges.

One such challenge posed by philendry (not his real name) asked how Xarans would create a brass or chrome disc. That challenge was quickly met. During the coarse of the thread, I created a glass disc which received much comment and many of you questioned how such a realistic disc was created. In an attempt to better the glass disc effect, I created a glass interface, which is the subject of this month's Xara X tutorial.

In this tutorial, we will not only recreate the look and feel of thick glass, we will also create glass buttons with mouse over effects, and we'll let Xara X do the heavy lifting and create the necessary web pages and HTML and JavaScript for us. I don't think you will be disappointed.

NOTE: You will need Xara X for this tutorial. If you don't have Xara X, click here to go to the Xara home page where you can download a Free 30-day trial copy.

No, there is nothing wrong with your monitor! The falling snow effect is one of dozens of really cool effects available at the new Xara Modules page. Now you can add wizzy new elements (like snow) to your web site, even if you are not an artist or can't write a line of JavaScript. Some of the cool Xara Modules include: password protection, visitor counter and visitor tracking (get the poop on who is visiting your site!), button bars (if you still haven't mastered Xara's new Nav Bar Tool), Smart Photo, which automatically color corrects, optimizes and resizes JPEG and GIF photos, banners, a host of awesome JavaFX effects like the snow shown here, and a lot more.

The best part is it's easy. No kidding. Go to the site. Sign up. (It doesn't cost you a dimeónot that I could determine at any rate). Check out the nifty samples of the different modules. And then upload an image or images into your online personal folder, and do all the tweaking on Xara's site. The interface couldn't be easier. And when you love the effect you have created, or have selected the perfect module for your site, press a button and Publish the effect.

You will be presented a one or two line script, which you copy and paste to your HTML document, and when you upload your Web page to your server, the script points to Xara Online and displays your cool effect.

And that is all there is to it. Try it out and let me know what you think.

©2001 Gary W. Priester
Tutorials are for private use only. No text or images may be used or reproduced in any form (except as tutorials) without the express written permission of the author.