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on 16 July 2007
From page 1: 'This book assumes that you have obtained a copy of Flex Builder 2 and have succesfully installed it on your computer.' Then it continues by using (just) Flex Builder.

This is an unpleasant surprise for the vast majority of ActionScript users used to Flash, not Flex Builder. Adobe sells Flex Builder 2 at $499. Flex Builder is a combination of the Flex SDK and Eclipse, both Open Source and free to download. This raises the question as to why Flex is so expensive. You'll never find out from reading this book. Maybe we'll have to buy another book from Lott, 'Programming Flex 2', first?

Apart from this, there are too many 'dumb' typo's in this book - in contrast to the just two you'll find in the online errata - something you wouldn't expect from long-time serious publisher O'Reilly and an Adobe Developer Library book. Specially in computer code, every character counts, every developer is painfully aware.
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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.

Colm Brazel

20 August 2008
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on 25 May 2008
This book isn't what it seemed (at least what it seems to me).

It is an introduction to programming with ActionScript in Flex Builder 3. It may still be useful for those working in the free SDK and in Flash, but that isn't its focus and it doesn't discuss those tools. It also assumes you're working in pure ActionScript, so Flex authors (surely the biggest contingent using Flex Builder) will have to adapt as well.

But the things that annoyed me was the lack of real recipes here. To me cookbook should take a competent programmer and show best practice in common, but non-trivial areas.

Firstly, most of the recipes in the book are trivial. Things like "you need to iterate over the items in an array" - solution "use a for loop". or "you need to carry out an action conditionally" - "use an if statement". Most of the recipes just point to one or two API functions. That may be ok if you're completely new to actionscript - but in that case you'd want a proper guide that walked you throug the tech - the question and answer format isn't helpful if you're going through in sequence.

And secondly, the work isn't that well edited, and the solutions to some of the few more sophisticated problems are not optimal for performance.

I wouldn't recommend this book. It seems to not know who its audience is, and fall between the cracks.
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on 28 June 2010
I must confess I was not aware of the Cookbooks format, but I definitely loved it.
This book explain the basics of actionscript 3 at the beginning and goes further to more complex fields at the final pages.
I was looking for a good receipt to work with actionscript, javascript, php and xml, and I found it in this book.
Moreover, the great theoretical base on object oriented programming delivered by this book is good and sufficient to whoever needs to start on such a field. The authors summarised it in its essence and did not disperse on unnecessary details.
I'm very happy with the book.

The only thing against the book is the fact that it is too focused to a precise tool (Flex Builder 2.0). But even that is not a big problem because the tool is available for trial in adobe site, so, anyone desiring to try actionscript 3 may be using that trial version.
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on 20 May 2013
Often it has got the solution to the problem you are having. Although: If you want to do anything with the microphone, this is not the book to buy - this is the time, there it is a bit old. Other than that, I really love it.
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on 20 October 2014
good product. good price.
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on 7 February 2007
This is a nice introduction which will help you to improve your understaning of ActionScript 3.0

You don't need to read from beginning to end. Just browse through the topics and read the chapter that you are interested in.

It is explains how ActionScript 3.0 is different from 2.0 and examples are simple which makes reading through easy.
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