Oh my Gawd… using Adobe Flex™

17 01 2008
I’m not sure why, but learning Adobe products just seems harder than Microsoft ones.
I’d guess it’s the lack of good documentation on the web. Lord knows, Adobe do try; they have eSeminars on the subject for God’s sake.
Nevertheless, I’ve taken on the role as Flash developer in a new position and I’m focusing pretty heavily on Adobe’s product Flex™. If you aren’t aware, Flex is Adobe’s framework for writing RIA. Chiefly, it is like designing a Windows program for the web. The advantage is of course, portability. The application will run in every operating system supporting Flash Player 9 (including OS X and Linux). You can use their Flex Builder app, which is an IDE built on the open-source Eclipse framework,and is somewhat comparable to Visual Studio. It’s handy, but there are still operations for which you will need the command-line compiler (runtime CSS for example). Currently, Flex Builder 3 Beta 4 is out on Adobe Labs and it’s worth a fiddle. Just don’t expect much comprehensive help from the available files.
For me, I’ve taken the Safari Books Online approach. A product like Flex is quite new and finding books on the subject can be taxing. Safari Online has the advantage of access to new publications way before they see the printing presses.



2 responses

18 01 2008

You can also find resources available in the many User Groups out there too. As a User Group Manager, I find presentations from the most basic ‘Intro to building an RIA’ to our most recent presentation on Mapping. There are a lot of great online resources as well, but you are correct, they are not as popular as some of the Microsoft resources. Check out http://www.flex.org for more info.

19 01 2008

Tis true that Adobe are trying hard – I just find it that much harder getting specific help with actionscript problems than let’s say, .NET ones.

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