As promised in the last post, I’ve uploaded an open source library coded by myself and a few friends. The library is intended for Actionscripters creating Flash experiences who prefer to work in Flex Builder or FDT. If you think the Flash CS3 coding environment sucks, then this library is for you!
Here is a high level overview of the current utilities
I’ve wrote several posts about this, but I feel like I haven’t even scratched the surface of how cool building Flash experiences in this way is. The basic gist is that you create your assets in Flash CS3, export them in a SWF, with the symbols with the export as actionscript linkage property set and a custom class name set. You then load them into your Actionscript project in Flex Builder using the AssetLoader class (only one line of code to load one or more SWFs). Once loaded you access the symbols via the AssetFinder class, which returns them as MovieClips. Using this method, you can dramatically reduce the size of the initial loading of your Flash experience, since you can load SWFs as you need them. You can also enforce a strict separation of visual assets and application control. No matter how the buttons change as long as their frame labels stay the same and the symbol is exported under the same class name your code doesn’t have to change at all. Also, since your project is based out of Flex Builder, you can use Subclipse as a version control app directly in your coding application! The FLA’s can be just a small part of your total project, and can be version controlled as well. For really small projects this is probably overkill, but for a medium to large size experience you’ll find the extra effort involved to set up a project in this way pays dividends when the inevitable torrent of changes or bugs come along at the eleventh hour.
This library was written by a good friend of mine and fellow member of this open source project, Zach, and it contains classes that help extend the Sprite class and wrap the MovieClip class. Basic functionality is automated such as buttons, build in and out sequences, and it even can chain multiple build in or out sequences. Most importantly it works in conjunction with the AssetLoader and AssetFinder and is intended to act as a wrapper for MovieClip assets loaded in from external SWFs.
To download the library, just click:
in your favorite SVN utility (Subclipse is the shit if you’re using Flex Builder or FDT).
If you would like to contribute, submit a bug, submit a feature request, or just yell at someone, just shoot me a mail at crebstock [at] gmail [dizzot] com.