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Great Intro to Actionscript 3.0
on 20 August 2008
For a programmer with some knowledge of programming in any language, ActionScript 3.0 Cookbook provides a great introduction to Actionscript.
The teaching method used is a hands one with the emphasis on doing examples rather than abstract theory. The examples cover a thorough and broad range of programming project requirements likely to be faced by any ActionScript 3 programmer e.g xml, web services, socket programming, sending and loading data,to name a few.
The first 2 chapters, 'Actionscript Basics' and 'Custom Classes' provide an excellent introduction to Actionscript 3. Basic programming tasks such as looping statements, timers,etc are covered with detailed examples.
ActionScript 3.0 Cookbook also introduces the preferred IDE for testing and working with Actionscript, 'Flex'. This is a major advantage to a beginner in AS 3.0 and Flex. A simple trace example introduces you to the entirely code based Flex IDE with its runtime environment and Flex debugger quicker than any theoretical description of Flex and 'trace'.
Advantages of using Flex should be immediately apparent.
By the end of chapter 2, 'Custom Classes', the reader should have a good enough foundation in Actionscript to duck and dive into the following chapters to test their well explained examples according to their interests and code requirements. Of particular interest to me were chapters and examples on 'Storing Persistent Data', 'Local Shared Objects', cross scripting, and communicating with other movies. Many examples show alternative approaches to the same project.
Though 'ActionScript 3.0 Cookbook' was first published in 2006 and refers to the Flex 2.0 IDE, Flex is currently at Flex 3.1, any reader interested in Actionscript 3.0 and Flex cannot but gain by acquiring their copy. Joey Lott, Darren Schall and Keith Peters, authors, are to be congratulated for their excellent work in providing us with an invaluable reference tool for Actionscipt projects.
20 August 2008