Author Archives: killerspaz

Mixing Flash and Flex

I was recently asked to give a presentation at our local Flash user group, Flash Dallas.
I didn’t have as much time as I would have liked to prepare, but I felt it came out pretty decent.

This is a quick post to throw up the slides, and a link to the presentation.
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A Plea to Developers and Markets

-or- How not to cruddy up our Markets…

Yeah… This is a rant guys… If you don’t agree, tell me – but take rude comments elsewhere. Comments will be open for as long as I can tolerate it (assuming anyone comments at all).

Get ready for a long read – and a lot of personal frustration; this won’t be pretty…
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MobileNumericStepper, and MobileLabelStepper

As Flex 4 (and in this case particularly Hero [v4.5]) works its way into the public, we continue to see components that aren’t there yet. Sometimes they do exist, but haven’t been optimized for mobile (this also has some ambiguity as to what that fully entails).

In the interim, we have to fend for ourselves and build custom components… Well, that’s not always all that fun, but also not always that bad!

I’ve done the dirty work, and created a MobileNumericStepper, as well as a MobileLabelStepper as a parent to it.

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Flex Serialization

There’s a few good use-cases for serialization; for me the first and foremost is the performance combined with ease of use.
In AIR we have SQLite access, or in a bad case we can write some format to a file and recover it later somehow via parsing. But why? That’s a lot of work… And it’s not the fastest approach either.

And what about if we’re doing a browser application that we want to save a state of something, but don’t want to host the storage and write a web service to handle data?
We don’t have stealth access to the filesystem directly, which makes it hard (errr, impossible) to silently store things on behalf of the user.

We can actually tackle both easily using serialization.

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AS3/Flash Geolocation API

I was playing with the Geolocation API, and have been having the hardest time getting it working. It would activate the GPS on my device (a Droid2), but would never trigger any updates and hit my breakpoint.

I knew this had to be something I was doing, because I’ve seen it working, have examples of working source, and can’t get it to work on my device…

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Entering the Tablet Ring: PlayBook, from RIM

As a current Flash/Flex developer, I’m constantly looking for new toys that will allow me to publish products to their platforms – and we just got a new contender.

The PlayBook – a tablet forthcoming by way of RIM, a business-centric renowned mobile device company, and is looking at developers to help catapult their product into the limelight.

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Flex 4 Skin States

While there’s plenty of information about skinning your Flex 4 component, I haven’t found a whole bunch of information on how to get them to talk together. In most situations I would consider this bad practice, however there is often a need for identifying properties set on your component from your skin in order to display certain aspects properly.

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Access to the Stage in Flex

I recently was working on an application, and needed to listen to KeyBoardEvent dispatches from the stage. This isn’t usually that much of an issue, except when your component needing to listen to these Events is created as part of the application creation process.

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You didn’t hear this from me, but HOW TO RIP MP3s FROM A WEBSITE

Ok, I probably shouldn’t be posting this, because I’d be pissed if someone ripped my content. But, this trick has served me some extraneous effort in ripping MP3’s or even other formats from certain websites (*cough* Grooveshark *cough cough* Pandora *cough*).

This approach works for everything from websites loaded in the browser using HTML5 or Flash, to custom applications (Adobe AIR, desktop applications, etc.).

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Scale to Fit (or Zoom to Fit)

This is a seemingly trivial task, but attempt to tackle it and you’ll quickly find yourself scratching your head wondering what the hell you’re doing…

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