From the Back Cover
The Complete Insider’s Guide to Building State-of-the-Art Components with Adobe’s Flex 4 Platform
“So many Flex books gloss over the details of component development, or focus just on MXML. Mike Jones has bucked tradition and written a book that can actually help beginning as well as experienced Flex developers. Mike covers topics that are not found in other books. This book is not on my shelf, it’s on my desk next to my keyboard.”
--Adrian Pomilio, UX Developer, Railinc Corp., Cary NC
“Finally, a book that covers Flex components from the ground up. I’ve been working with Flex for several years, but I have to admit that I’ve never quite grasped component development fully, let alone their styling, packaging, and distribution. Thanks for this book, Mike; it was long overdue!”
--Stefan Richter, Editor, FlashComGuru.com; Founder, muchosmedia ltd
Using Adobe’s Flex 4 framework, developers can build rich, immersive solutions more easily and quickly than ever. Much of Flex 4’s remarkable power is based on its component-based approach. Adobe provides many components “out of the box,” but you can accomplish even more by building your own. In Developing Flex 4 Components, world-renowned Flex and Flash developer Mike Jones thoroughly demystifies all facets of Flex component development, showing how to quickly create and deliver high-value components to the widest possible audience.
Jones introduces the Flex 4 component architecture, reviews its built-in components, and shows how they can be extended or incorporated into new components. Next, he walks through developing components from scratch, covering issues ranging from events to skinning. Finally, he turns to distribution, introducing best practices for everything from integration to documentation.
Jones draws on nearly 15 years’ experience developing with Flex and Flash. You’ll find extensive sample code, plus dozens of practical tips that are available nowhere else. After reading this book, you’ll be able to
• Set up your Flex and Flash Builder development environment
• Understand key differences between Flex 3 and Flex 4 component frameworks
• Learn how Flex components are typically structured, developed, and rendered
• Leverage ActionScript and MXML to quickly create components
• Implement view states, transitions, effects, and events
• Manipulate and store complex data collections
• Use Flex 4’s FXG and MXMLG to support skinning and styling
• Create components with Flash Professional CS5’s drawing tools
• Integrate components with Flash Builder
• Package components for easy distribution with or without source code
• Streamline implementation with manifests, design view extensions, and metadata
If you’re an experienced Flash, Flex, or AIR developer, this book will help you create any component you can imagine--and deliver solutions others can only dream about.
About the Author
Mike Jones has 14 years of experience developing for the Flash Platform. He was first introduced to Flash (then called Futurewave Splash) in November 1996, by his then Visual Arts studio manager while at a university. Suffice it to say, Flash made sense to Mike, and he literally ran with it and never looked back.
These days, Mike is a Platform Evangelist at Adobe and spends most of his time speaking with customers, presenting, and blogging and tweeting about the Flash Platform. Although developing is Mike’s first love, he never refuses the chance to speak at user groups and conferences about components, the Flex framework, AIR, and the Flash Platform in general.
A regular speaker at Flash on the Beach on topics such as “Flex Development in 60 Minutes” and Flex component development, anyone who has met Mike knows he speaks passionately about these technologies, which is the same passion that has kept him engaged as Flash and Flex have grown over the years. When he isn’t speaking or developing, Mike posts his thoughts and musings on Flash technologies on his blog (http://blog.flashgen.com). He lives in Haslemere, England, with his wife Emma, new baby daughter Freya, and his cat JPeg.