Studio: Action Palette

Actions provide a way for an artist to create interactivity in a presentation without scripting. Actions listen for an event to occur on an element (or, due to event bubbling, on any descendant of the element), and when it occurs they cause an effect in the presentation. This effect may be a direct modification of the presentation (tell a component to switch slides, change the color of an element).

Creating Actions

An action is defined by five attributes:

  • The element that the action is attached to (the "home element").
  • The element that the action is listening to (the "Trigger Object").
  • The event that the action is listening for (the "Trigger Event").
  • The element that the action will control (the "Target Object").
  • The handler to invoke on the target element (with possible additional parameters).

To create an action, first choose the slide and home element that the action is attached to. Actions may be non-master, taking effect only on a particular slide. For your sanity, we recommend attaching the action to either the Trigger or Target object.

Second, click the New Action button in the Action palette. An action will be created and selected, with its properties set to default values. Modify these properties in the bottom half of the Action palette as appropriate.

Managing Actions

Actions may be deleted by clicking on the action summary at the top of the Actions palette and pressing the Delete key, by choosing Delete Action after right-clicking on an action sumary, or by selecting the action summary and clicking the trash can icon at the bottom of the Actions palette.

Tip: it is possible to have an action visually selected at the same time as Studio thinks that a different palette (for example, the Timeline palette) is actually accepting keyboard input. If you press the Delete key, you might want to double-check and ensure that only the action was deleted, and not the element that was selected in the Timeline palette.

Copying Actions

To save time, you may copy and paste an action to a different element instead of creating a new action on that element. You must do this using the Copy Action and Paste Action context menu entries for the action summary. (If you use ctrl-c and ctrl-v you will end up copying and pasting the entire element that the action is on.)

The values of the Trigger Object and Target Object properties for the pasted action depends on the Type chosen when picking the objects:

  • If the type is Absolute Reference then the same element will be used in the pasted action.
  • If the type is Path Reference then the element will be resolved relative to the home element for the new action.

For example, consider an action on element A that has A as the Trigger Object. You then copy and paste the action to element B. If the Trigger Object was specified with an Absolute Reference, the new action on element B will still be using element A as the Trigger Object. However, if the Trigger Object was specified with a Path Reference then the new action will use element B as the Trigger Object.

This seemingly-complex system allows the sophisticated artist to quickly copy and paste actions to multiple elements with a minimum of editing on each new action.

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