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Media Life Keyword

<MediaLife N>
<ml N>

    Switch to override the default time that DMDX buffers media. N is the number of items to keep this media in memory for.

    By default if a piece of media (<wav>, <jpeg>, <bmp>, <dv>, or <sa>) is not used again in the next item DMDX releases the resources used to load that piece of media (an N of 1).  If an item file however repeatedly uses that media but with intervening items this keyword can be used to extend the time before DMDX releases those resources. Originally this was not included because I figured that the disk cache that win32 automatically maintains would keep load times trivial, however if an item file requires a really demanding <delay> parameter <ml> can lower the minimum delay that might otherwise be possible. Using this keyword will lower Preparation A times after the media has been used once, it will not affect the preparation B times however.

    Under certain circumstances it may be desirable to specifically stop DMDX from using resources from one item to the next (say you're using digital video and Direct3D and your video hitches weirdly the second time it's used) and here you use a media life of zero to specifically prohibit DMDX from reusing this frame's resources (assuming you're using DMDX or later).

    Should you wish to preload bitmaps without displaying them you can put %0 in the frames like this:
0 %0 <ml 1000> <bmp> "bitmap1" /
%0 <ml 1000> <bmp> "bitmap2" /
%0 <ml 1000> <bmp> "bitmap3" /
"Loading Images";
    Should you wish to pre-load bitmaps without a message for the subjects the <SkipDisplay> keyword could be used like this:
    0 <sd> <ml 1000> <bmp> "bitmap1" /
<ml 1000> <bmp> "bitmap2" /
<ml 1000> <bmp> "bitmap3" ;

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