The Xara Trompe L'Oeil Room November 2001

to download a Zipped HTML version of this tutorial

Creating a Custom User Interface.

I am using PNG (pronounced Ping) files for this month's tutorial. PNG files are supported by newer Browsers but not some of the older ones. If you have a problem seeing these files please let me know by responding with the form on page 13. I'm using PNG format because it produces a smaller file size with slightly better image quality than GIF images.

In addition to the main tutorial (previewed above) there is a mini-tutorial for creating non-rectangular buttons, the technique for which, I discovered upon completing the main tutorial.

Rather than tell you what this month's tutorial is about, I'll let the Book Flipper from Xara Modules tell you. (You will need to be connected to the Internet to see the cool effect). As you can see, 99.3% of the finished cartoon face is comprised of beveled shapes. And even though there are a lot of steps in this tutorial (about 45 I think), it is easy enough for new users to tackle and yet challenging enough for experienced users too.

The Book Flipper animation is one of 9 Xara Modules in the Photo Edits and Effects collection. You may have seen the snow falling on the palm trees image a few months ago, this is another part of the same collection.

I created the effect (constraining myself to only flipping in one direction—there are about 9 different directions in which the page can flip) in about 5 minutes. No kidding. It's this easy:

  1. Upload the images you want to use to the Xara Modules site.
  2. Select Book Flipper > Create > New.
  3. Add the images you want to use and determine which way the images will flip (or use the default setting as I did).
  4. Save and Publish.

Xara Modules gives you a line of script which goes into your HTML page, and which plays the Java Scripted action when your visitor visits your web page. I think you can probably think of at least a dozen creative uses for this and some of the other 8 cool effects.

All modules come with a free 15-day trial period. If you don't like the effect, you don't pay for it (of course you can't use it after 15 days if you don't pay for it). Each module runs under $3.00 US per month or $29.00 a year. If you buy the entire package of 9 effects, however, you pay only $4.95 US per month or just $49.00 a year. You save this much not having to pay for these tutorials alone! And, I need not remind you who makes these free tutorials free. Eh?

So do me and yourself a favor and pay a visit to the Xara Modules site. There is some really cool and fun effects that will add spice to your web site.

©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.