FLEX | 360 Atlanta | Day 2

Johnny Boursiquot – AIR Infrastructure to manage licensing maintenance and monetization of AIR apps

This is important information as more and more apps ar looking at using AIR to make apps. Discussion on how he’s deployed for large corporations including Avaya, Honeywell, Seagate and others. We need to be thinking about how to license the apps we make!
He’s promised a version of his slide show here: Developers Pierinc

Renaun Erickson – QTIndexSwapper H.264

The flash player now supports H.264 format video files! This is great but one problem is the meta data is placed at the end of the file and therefore the video can’t be accessed until it is fully loaded to the end. The metadata (moov) needs to be loaded before the play knows how it’s indexed. Renaun showed a technique he’s been playing with. He has an AIR app that will move the meta data to the beginning of the file for viewing during progressive download! He also talked about other meta data, like album art, and stuff, he’s promised more links to be posted on his blog
So far, here’s the source at Renaun’s site
More info posted about H264 and Flash by Dave Hassoun at Adobe’s Developer Center

Andy Edmonds – Scrutinizer

Discussing the psychology of vision (fovea and peripheral). We discussed how better design relates to a sites efficiency. Andy showed a couple videos from stomperNet (which can be found at the Going Natural 2 page or stomperNet’s youTube channel) and showed a demo of the Scrutinizer AIR app which is available for free beta download at About.StomperNet.com . Scrutinizer is a browser which forces you to see the internet how your eyes see it, rather than how you brain puts together what your eyes see. It has a layer which blurs the rendered html page, and also a layer which desaturates the colors, which modifies the page as you are looking at it. The browser attempts to show you what you are looking at, but importantly it disconnects your vision from your eye, using instead the mouse so you can actually look at your peripheral vision. Like the “squint test”, where you squint your eyes to see the general overview of a page, this page is blurred to only show the most dominant designs. An interesting tool hat can be used to improve site designs and efficiency.

Doug McCune – Open source Flex community projects

A great discussion about projects and opensource communities. Doug loved to point out that you can take two open source libraries and mash them together to make your own thing.
A few places to find open source code: google, flexbox, ria forge, and a growing number of personal blogs
An example was FlexSpy (basically a debugger that runs live in your flex app) in which Doug added his own part to the existing open source code to monitor all event listeners in addition to all the debugging features already existing in flexSpy.
A highly recommended plugin for flex (eclipse) is subclipse, which adds svn repository, checkout source as flex library project, build swc, add to your build path…
List of open source libraries discussed: (I’ll try to add all the links later)
Big open source libraries for as3 and flex: flexLib (now including flexMDI), minimalComps, AsWing, openFlux
Graphics Libraries: Degrafa (declarative graphics framework – lets you write graphics in mxml tags), Singularity (Jim Armstrong’s math library), AlivePDF (create pdf in actionscript).
Physics engines: Actionscript Physics Engine (APE), Box2D and Motor 2 (both more of an as3 feel) (almost the same), FOAM (note that with physics engines there are differences between the particle based and rigid body based engines.)
3D: PaperVision 3D (most popular3d engine), Away3D (was a branch of papervision, but is now seperate), Sandy, wow (3D physics engine)
Flex specific uses: Alex Uhlmann’s Sandy distortion effects library, Tink’s PV3D transitions..
Tweening (moving an object property from a to b, set something with a transitional effect): Tweener, KitchenSink (MosesSuposes.com)

The Summarizing moral: Don’t reinvent anything, but don’t trust other peoples code blindly. Give credit where credit is due, and contribute back to the community.

James Echmalian – Enhancing Flex Presentations with Bitmap Technques

Bitmap data is just a 2D array of pixels with 4 channels (red, green, blue, and alpha).
Bitmaps are a view of a bitmapdata class, inheriting displayObject properties (height width, scaleX, scaleY, rotation, visible…) but bitmapData and bitmap are not the same thing.
Image – loader – loads an image out of an external file using loader, converts formatted data into display objects automatically.
Image – display – wraps a bitmap, is a flex component, has properties, styles controls…
Demo source to show bitmap editing will be on site ech.net/360flex2008 and ech.net/blog contains all source and annotated slides.

Special thanks goes out to all the Flex|360 Day Two Speakers!

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