Migrate from Flex 2 to Flex 3 beta

30 06 2007

post very good post for migrating flex 2.0 to flex 3.0 beta. i.e DataProvider APIs are no longer on the list classes. For example, you can no longer say myList.getItemAt(index). Instead, say myList.dataProvider.getItemAt(index).

read in more details





Your RIA should be a RIA!!!!

28 06 2007

Any RIA [Rich Internet Application] developer should respect the word “Rich”. A RIA should have richness which can increase an application’s business values. In context of RIA, richness menses greater UI design, innovative navigation, user friendly inputs, optimized downloading, and quality feedback to user. All these elements impart great richness to the application and results into a joyous experience for both, the client and the user.

The paragraph, above, says nothing new. All of us know these facts and that’s why we are in RIA domain. But the thing is, do we really follow this kind of an attitude while developing an application?

Here, let me try to figure out few aspects which can really bring smile on a user’s face.

Spend special time to understand navigational flow

This is very important aspect for RIA – “navigational flow”. Which control shall we use to provide better navigation – Accordion, Tab Bar, Toggle button bar, Link bar or Menu bar. This depends on your application and the layout you have created.
In some cases, you have to think beyond these components. Let’s say you have to create checkout functionality of the shopping cart. This checkout form has seven steps to follow.

Now, which component will you use?
Accordion? Nope that will takes much of UI space.
TabBar ? hmmmmm……………. No that will not give the feel of sequential steps.
ToggleButtonBar ? it has the same problem as TabBar.
Which navigation control should you use. . …………….

Simple answer you have to create your own stepper component which may look like the image below.

The moral of the story is, think beyond the flex frame work to provide innovative navigation. Believe me that makes so much difference in a client’s satisfaction

Respect your UI designers and creative people

Generally the very first step of any application development is a mockup design. At that time you will find your “UI designer” busy with an image editing tool like Photoshop or Fireworks. Once through, he will approach you with some kind of designs, which you think are not feasible to develop using the flex frame work. For example the UI designer may come up with something like following component for providing help, warning or instruction.

At first look, you may simply refuse this idea by saying like, “we can just put tooltip over here. So please design accordingly.”

Rather then saying No to creative idea, you should say, “Hmmm. Let’s do it.”

Keep the targeted user, in mind

One day I was creating a small e-learning application for children of the age group of 10 years. I had created very cute navigation with collapse functionality. I had just put “<<” and “>> ” kind of icons on collapse button with width and height of 10 X 10 pixels. Suddenly our CEO passed from my desk and reviewed that navigation part.

He gave me suggestion to create 30X100 pixel buttons and write “CLOSE” and “OPEN” on the buttons. I said why? It was easy to understand by the means of the icons. He told me, as an IT person I knew this is “collapse menu button”, but a 10 to 15 years child would never know why this button was and what it meant 🙂

Signs convey a lot of things, in a very salient mode

Use icons where ever your application requires.

Icons sites

Get inspired from other applications

Before create any application we should spend time to see other, applications, UI designs, how they done this.
Below is the links from where you can get inspired

More on UI design and usablity
Read “Creating Effective RIA Interfaces” article of gSkinner.





10 + 2 unbitable reason why flex not “silverlight” in current scenario

26 06 2007

My friend Anand bloged 10 + 2 unbitable reason why flex not “silverlight” in current scenario.

Ted Says:

1. Flex is available today and works.

2. Flex 2 is viewable in 85+% of web browsers, Flex 2 SWF files run in Flash Player 9.

3. You can use any HTTP Server and any backend technology (.NET,JAVA,PHP,Ruby,CF, Python) with Flex via XML, SOAP, Sockets, ZLIB, Etc.

 read whole article and boost up your self to work in flex






New Orange theme online

25 06 2007


Juan updated
www.scalenine.com and included my new orange theme check it online.

Thanks Jaun 🙂





mx:Spacer tag can save your valuable time

25 06 2007

I have seen many developers who are spending time to just adjust their UI elements and controls. They give hard code values , put invisible containers and so many unreasonable tricks. Flex Frame work already has very smart guy call <mx:Spacer> who will be addressing this issues.

 

Scenario 1

 

 

Scenario 2

 





Explicit support for Module base application

25 06 2007

Imagine if your application has 1000 or more pages with high end graphics and animation. You must think about performance. The simple answer is module base application.

Module, It was really great feature of “flex 2.0.1 hot suffix 2.0 SDK” but in flex builder 2.0 was not having explicit support for Module based application. Therefore we have to make separate modules, compiling report.xml, then recompile all the modules ….. ohhhh that was really frustrating process.

But now flex 3.0 has explicit support of module based application. That means flex builder itself will handle all this process. Here I have tried to explain how flex builder 3.0 supports modules.

 

Create Module more easily

To create new module just right click on your project and select new module. It will ask you name of the module. There is one other combo box with label of optimize size for application. Now this is some thing really good in flex builder 3.0. This feature will generate report.xml file and optimize your application for selected application.

This action will add tryThisOut.mxml module to your project.

Tip

If you are creating 100% liquid module which should fit in to your module loader container, then you have to use percentageWidth and percentageHeight properties of module class. Check below image

Now when you press ctrl +b or press “Build all buttons”, it will generate tryThisOut.swf file in your output folder. Then after you can load this module wherever you require.

Manage modules

Flex 3.0 adds modules to project when you create new one. But if you want to copy and paste module from other project to your current project you have to add manually. To do that just right click on current project on navigator window then after click on property button at the bottom of the pop up menu. You will find module link on open dialog box. There is one button “add” on right side. You can simply add module. You can also edit existing module from the same window.

Debug modules

You have to just allow modules for debugging by clicking on enable debugging modules. That will allow you to debug your modules

Hope this will help you.

Find more about modules @ https://bkflex.files.wordpress.com/2007/06/modular.pdf

Rock on module 🙂

Add [27-06-2007]

Optimising Modules

Don’t use the classes that have been compiled in the application in the module. Compile without them as they are not needed.

You can use the link report to identify modules that you don’t need.

 

 





Another great Flex teacher :-)

25 06 2007

here is the new resource of flex tutorials. it has great tutorials.
Another great Flex teacher