10-31-2010 02:23 PM
You can find tutorials in all of these places:
and of course:
There are plenty more out there but this should give you a good start. There are also a few books that are worth your time, Colin Moock is excellent at explaining actionscript.
11-01-2010 03:07 AM
Thanks for this info! Hope to really get started soon!
11-02-2010 09:34 AM - edited 11-02-2010 09:35 AM
I forgot to mention a few of the best websites for actionscript ( facepalm )
Excellent resource for tutorials:
( this one changed the direction of my career, in a great way, about six years ago )
A few forums:
11-02-2010 02:48 PM
Currently, the Adobe technologies appear to be an alphabet soup of lots of different things which is very confusing to an outsider. I am a mobile developer but I have no clear picture of how different (and how related) Flex, Flash and AIR are. There also seem to be a LOT of books aimed at designers and I dont find the "visual" tools intuitive at all.
Can anyone recommend resources by programmers for programmers (rather than designers) ?
11-02-2010 03:08 PM - edited 11-02-2010 03:09 PM
Actionscript 3 is an OOP language that is used to write anything from simple framescripts ( a simple stop(); that is placed in a timeline keyframe in the flash ide ) to fully developed enterprise applications that are visible in a flash plugin environment. Actionscript is the language that programs flash.
Flex is a framework written in Actionscript 3 that is used to help speed up application development ( just like php is a language and code igniter is a framework for php ).
The flash plugin environment that I alluded to earlier can be shown in a browser or an AIR application which, for the sake of simplicity, is a cross-platform desktop version of a flash plugin. Does that clear anything up? I know it can be a little confusing, but I am trying to shed a little light, not confuse people.
Two books geared towards programmers rather than designers are:
11-03-2010 09:02 PM
One good place to start can be Lynda.com. While it does cost real money, it is very helpful especially if you are having a hard time with the Adobe alphabet soup.
In fact, Lynda's introductory videos (which are usually free in the sampling spirit) are sometimes good resources.
11-03-2010 09:07 PM
Found these websites and posted them as tutorials as well in a separate post....
11-03-2010 09:33 PM
This should help.
Adobe Flash Player
Adobe Flash Player is a browser plugin or Active X control that has a much richer object model and rendering engine that allows developers to include more highly expressive and interactive content in web applications. To include this richer content, you create you a SWF file (a compiled bytecode file that Flash Player can render) using some developer tool and then reference this SWF file in your HTML page. When the HTML page is parsed by the browser, the SWF file is downloaded and run by Flash Player in the browser window.
Adobe Flash Builder
Adobe creates many tools for creating SWF files, including Flash Professional, Flash Builder (formerly Flex Builder), Flash Catalyst, and more. Each tool caters to different developer and designer skill sets. Adobe Flash Builder is an Eclipse-based development tool targeted at developers. With this IDE, you use the Flex framework to create SWF files. Flash Builder accelerates Flex application development by providing intelligent code hinting and generation, refactoring, compile-time error checking, interactive step-through debugging, and visual design for laying out and styling user interfaces.
Flex is a free, open source framework comprised of a library of ActionScript classes (ActionScript is the scripting language for the Flash Player) and executables to help you more quickly and easily develop, compile, and interactively debug applications. The Flex framework includes classes for over 100 extensible components, including UI controls (buttons, list boxes, sliders, steppers, data grids, charts, and more), containers (VGroup, HGroup, Panel, Form, and more to help you build adaptive application interfaces), managers (for styles, drag and drop, focus, popups, cursors, browser history and deep links, and more), remote procedure calls (HTTP request, web services, and remote objects), formatters, validators, and utilities.
ActionScript and MXML
You create Flex applications (SWF files built with Flex) using two languages: ActionScript and MXML. ActionScript is an inheritance based object-oriented scripting language based on the ECMAScript standard. MXML is a convenience language; it provides an alternate way to generate ActionScript using a declarative tag-based XML syntax. When you compile an application, the MXML is parsed and converted to ActionScript in memory and then the ActionScript is compiled into bytecode, your SWF file. Although you never have to use MXML, it is typically used to define application interfaces (for layouts, the MXML code is usually more succinct and understandable than the corresponding ActionScript would be) and ActionScript is used to write the application logic.
The rich Internet applications built with Flex run in the browser with Flash Player and have all the benefits of browser-based applications, including anywhere access, easy deployment (no installation necessary), simple updating, and consistency across all operating systems and browsers. They also have all the limitations of browser-based applications, including no offline access and the confines of the browser's security sandbox which keeps them from interacting with the user's computer outside the browser window.
In order to get the best of both worlds, Adobe introduced Adobe AIR, a cross-operating system runtime and set of tools that enable developers to deploy HTML, Ajax, and Flash Platform applications (SWF files) to the desktop. The Flash Platform is what Adobe calls its entire family of technologies used to create, run, and provide data to SWF files including the client runtimes, tools, frameworks, servers, and cloud services. An emerging design pattern for applications is to deliver a browser-based version for all users and a desktop version for more active or power users.
You can use Flash Builder to create both web and desktop applications with Flex. If you create both types of applications, you can also share code from separate library projects. When you compile a Flex application for the desktop, you get a SWF and an XML file (called the application descriptor file) which has information about things like what the container operating system window should look like, what icon should be used for the application on the client computer, and more.
During development, it would be inconvenient (to say the least) if you had to install the application on your computer every time you wanted to test it. Instead when you test an application, Flash Builder launches a tool called the AIR Debug Launcher (ADL), which allows you to run the application without installation. When ready to deploy, you use Flash Builder, which uses a tool called the ADT (AIR Development Tool) to create either a release build consisting of an AIR package file (which includes the SWF file, the application descriptor file, assets, and more) or a native application installer (for the operating system the ADT is running on, for example a DMG on a Mac, an EXE on Windows, or a DEB or RMP on Linux). This is the file you must distribute to your users. When you export, you must also associate a digital certificate from a trusted agency to sign the application since it will install on the user's computer with full permissions and have capabilities for interacting with their operating system. (Of course, you should only ever install trusted applications to minimize the chance they may contain any harmful code.)
In order to install an AIR application, users must have the AIR runtime installed which is the cross-operating system runtime used to install, manage, and run AIR applications. To provide a more seamless install experience for users so they can install the application from a web page (instead of having to to download and install the AIR runtime and then download and install the AIR application), Adobe provides a default HTML file and badge.swf file which provides a template for letting users click a badge (a framed customized image button) that checks and installs the runtime if necessary and then installs the AIR application. If you go the Adobe AIR Marketplace, you will see this is how all the applications are delivered. If you package the application as a native installer, the installer checks for the required version of the AIR runtime and downloads and installs it first if necessary.
With that, you are now up to speed on Flash Player, SWF files, Flash Builder, Flex, ActionScript, MXML, AIR runtime, and AIR files.
Here is the source....