Archive for the 'Flex' Category

Adobe’s love of shotguns…

Adobe seems to have a love of shotguns, namely pointing it at itself and/or it’s users and pulling the trigger.

***

I’ve been pretty vocal about my dislike for the present CEO. I sold all my Adobe shares (just to make that clear).  And I really think Adobe is doing EVERYTHING it can to kill itself – which is a shame because they have a lot of good products.

So recently on Slashdot there was a discussion of Adobe’s handling of a Photoshop CS5 bug. Where Adobe’s solution is “Pay us to upgrade to CS6”
https://www.adobe.com/support/security/bulletins/apsb12-11.html

Now some might point out the fact that CS5 was released 2 years ago and CS6 is the second version since CS5 (with CS5.5 in between). But let’s consider whether that is legitimate justification.

CS5 was released in April 2010, followed by CS5.5 in April 2011. CS6 was just released this April. Let’s say you bought the top of the line “Master Chief Suite”.  The upgrade cost from CS5.5 is $550, and from CS5 – over a thousand $$$$.

But let’s say you bought Adobe CS5 suite in March 2011. You’re now on the hook for over a $1,000 just to secure your 14 month old software suite.  That’s pretty damn petty IMHO.

I already dislike how tiered Adobe’s upgrade path has become.  Essentially they’ve kept the the high upgrade price while moving to a shorter upgrade cycle. And tiering the upgrade based on the version.  But it used to be that upgrades were available to the last two cycles. And I think it should still be that way.  Instead, Adobe is trying to get $500/year, every year from it’s users.

Why this is bad?  $500/year isn’t bad if you’re an active business with a high production rate.  But it’s very bad if you’re an independent or part time user (ie: many of us with a 40 hour a week day job that DOESN’T use Adobe products) and you just want to stay in the game and stay current with Adobe technology and do the odd job here and there.   It then becomes cost prohibitive; and why is this bad? Because it means people like me will fall behind on Adobe’s technology platform and cease maintaining the skillset,  in other words, shrinking of Adobe’s developer base – and that’s a VERY BAD thing.

Adobe is becoming an extremely greedy company under it’s current leadership; and a foolish one to boot.  I’ve long advocated for the removal of Adobe’s current CEO and a replacement with someone who better understands the present digital world.

SOLUTION: Release a reduced developer edition of CS Master Suite. The developer edition requires that you sign-up as an individual programmer. It gives you a limited license. Full featured, but you can only produce personal or not-for-profit products.   Make it cheap!

This is similar to the licensing that Adobe did with giving away Flex Builder in 2009 to anyone who was unemployed.  That was a REALLY cool thing, and I give Adobe HUGE Kudos for that. 

Adobe’s Flash, although oft criticized has a tremendous amount going for it technology wise. But it’s been mis-marketed, managed, and like Coldfusion is kept from it’s potential.  I truly believe Adobe is going in a direction that will ultimately lead to it’s eventual demise/purchase within a decade’s time. Where as I believe that Adobe if it were to take advantage of certain opportunities in his playing hand could propel itself to a position of near rivalry with Apple and Microsoft.  But so far, I haven’t seen them do ANY of the right decisions they need to do for that.

😦

 

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A friend posted about Code Warm up level challenge

Well, I didn’t have much time. And haven’t free coded in ages. I had an idea but it didn’t work perfectly. Tried to do just a mock-up and even that ran into trouble. (For whatever reason, my Level Up code is broken. It was working 20 minutes ago. But now _levelUp += 1; suddenly becomes 128. Er huh what? Went to debug, but no longer have Flash Debug version thanks to last update.

Anyways, the concept is to get away from all the typical level up bars. I mean it’s almost a guarantee that an RPG is going to use a level up bar or a pie. But why? It is probably the simplest way to convey a level. But it’s definitely not original.

My thought was to use the color spectrum. We know how primary/secondary color circles work. Red, to orange, to yellow, to green, to blue, to purple.  So theoretically you can show a progression via color change.  Furthermore, standard RGB has something like 16,000,000+ colors. So right off the bat you have an XP system that can handle 16 million experience points.

http://easternstorm.net/sassie/colorleveler/ColorLeveler.html

Not sure, whether I would implement a different color shift for a level or if I would have each level go through the entire shift. And use a level multiplier to handle the XP. (ie: Level 1 only needs 1,600 XP.)  Well there you have it, food for thought.

It was fun to code even though I kept finding myself hitting hurdles. That is until I hit the += bug.  Seriously, WHAT THE HECK am I doing wrong. Source code is available. It’s probably some stupid typo or goof. Having been coding ActionScript in a while. Rusty.
More info over here on the code warmup…

http://codewarmup.jessefreeman.com/

One week until 360|Flex in D.C.

If you’re a Flash/Flex developer, or interested in finding out what all this “Flex stuff” is all about. I highly recommend attending 360|Flex Conferences.

360 Conferences put on a great conference, there is tons of information and learning, and great community.  While Adobe MAX has more awe and wow factor. I actually found myself craving 360|Flex’s smaller more intimate community feel.

How to enable CNTRL-T tab in Flash

We’ve all been there.  Casually browsing online, viewing some Flash powered site. We see something and we want to Google or Wikipedia it. So we hit CNTRL-T.

Brain Crash!  Nothing happens and it seems like our brain is just hanging there in a suspended state waiting for the event to complete – but it never does.  Finally some try/catch error handling in our brains goes something like this.

Try CNTRL-T
Catch (failed to launch tab)
If Flash
Go Duh!
Click URL Bar
CNTRL-T

It’s always bothered me as I do not understand why this is so. Yes, I understand Flash is sandboxed. But come on…usability. Can’t anything be done?

Yes! Sort of…

Below is code to facilitate creating a new tab window. It’s not the prettiest solution, nor is it a complete solution. But blast it – it’s a START!

First you will need to listen for the “applicationComplete” event. Place the following code in your <s:Application> tag.

applicationComplete=”appCompleted()”

Next create a <fx:Script> tag and place the following code inside:
import flash.events.Event; //Imports Event class.
//On application complete event adds a listener to stage which listens for the key stroke down event.
private function appCompleted():void{
stage.addEventListener(KeyboardEvent.KEY_DOWN, monitorKeyStroke);
}
//Function called on key stroke down event. Evaluates keystroke, if CNTRL-T, launches a new tab.
private function monitorKeyStroke(event:KeyboardEvent):void{
if((event.charCode == 116) && (event.ctrlKey == true)){
ExternalInterface.call(“function newTab(){window.open()}”)
}
}

***

Please note, I have not evaluated this on the Mac platform now that I no longer have access to an OS X machine.

Did your Flash Bulder 4 Beta Expire

If you go here, you can enter a valid Flex Builder 3 license and get a license code to extend Flash Builder 4 Beta

https://freeriatools.adobe.com/flashbuilder4beta/

(Wish I knew this fact 2 months ago *LOL*)

Unemployed? How about a free Flex Builder license?

Adobe is offering for a limited time a personal license for Flex Builder for those that have fallen on hard times (ie: unemployed).  The license is intended to be for learning only, and no production, but I am fine with that.  When the time for production arrives, the $$$ for a license should shortly follow.

https://freeriatools.adobe.com/learnflex/

First off, I have to say a heartfelt thank you to Adobe. Adobe you rawk!

Being one who is currently unemployed, and wanting to further my skills. I found myself getting concerned with the upcoming expiration of my trial edition of Flex Builder.  This just eliminated one significant area of stress.

Inaugural meeting of SVFUG

We will be having our first meeting of the Susquehanna Flash/Flex User Group (SVFUG) next Tuesday, January 27th @ 6:15pm.

SVFUG is a community group for sharing knowledge regarding Adobe Flash based products and auxiliary tools catering to the York/Lancaster area.  Each meeting will usually have 1-2 sessions at varying educational levels and differing topics.  We will also be providing pizza/soda during a break.

I know a number of individuals have already expressed interest in furthering their knowledge of Flash and/or programming. I wanted to give everyone an opportunity to attend.  This is a great opportunity to learn, and potentially, to network with others in our community.

If you are interested (and live in the area), I suggest you click here, create an account at groups.adobe.com, and join SVFUG at the following link

http://groups.adobe.com/groups/f8d9c4add8/summary


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