Cool Stuff with the Flash Platform - 08/25/2010

Posted on Aug 26, 2010

Before I start, let me introduce this new series of blog posts/roundups I am starting by saying that if there is such a thing as too much reading then I read too much. In keeping up with hundreds upon hundreds of blog posts and other resources, I tend to see some pretty amazing stuff being created by the Adobe developer community. Luckily, part of my new role as Web Community Manager for Flash Platform within the Learning Resources group here at Adobe is to keep up with how the community is using and writing about Flash Platform products. This is the first in what I plan to become a regular series of posts covering some of the recent posts or articles that stood out to me (as in these were my personal favorites, not necessarily endorsed by my employer). Please, if you have something you’d like me to share, feel free to email me, post in he comments or dm/reply to me on Twitter.

Cool Mobile Stuff
With the official release of Flash Player 10.1 on Android and the pre-release of AIR for Android, there seems to be a growing number of posts from the community as well as Adobe bloggers covering that topic - as well as a lot of interest in reading this topic.

One of the coolest demos I saw recently built with AIR for Android was picked up by most of the mainstream tech blogs including Engadget. This application, built by Christopher Caleb is a GPS system designed to look like the X-Wing targeting system from the original Star Wars. The GPS even plays movie sounds coinciding with your navigation.

Focusing more on Flash for Android, Todd Anderson of Infrared5 (coincidentally enough, creators of the Star Wars Trench Run game) released a set of open source ActionScript components, under the name as3flobile, designed to be optimized for use on mobile devices. They specifically take into account the use of gestures for navigation.

Jesse Freeman has been a consistent author for a number of publications on mobile development and this week had an excellent comparison of the Nexus One vs. the HTC Evo on ActiveTuts. This video specifically highlights the differences in touch screen and other functionality that you may often miss when developing on emulators. Though, on the topic of emulators, Pete Freitag had a tutorial showing how to set them up.

Michaël Chaize, Adobe Flash Platform Evangelist, shared a video and some code of a sample application he wrote that shows how to use the microphone and also accelerometer in AIR for Android. He records your his voice into the microphone and then encodes that as an MP3 that can be saved and downloaded. He also recreates the “blow into your microphone” trick common on Nintendo DS games like Mario Kart.

Cool Flex Stuff
Speaking of Michaël Chaize, he also wrote an interesting Flex related post showing how you can create your own custom preloader bar using an animation created with Flash CS5 that he uses inside Flash Builder.

Cool AIR Stuff
One of the official announcements of interest was the release of Melrose on Adobe labs. Melrose is a marketplace for Adobe AIR applications that can distribute these to multiple stores.

Another official announcement was the release of the Adobe AIR Launchpad which is an AIR application that facilitates the creation of AIR projects and even install badges. Adobe Technical Evangelist, James Ward has a video showing off the features. While it doesn’t yet support HTML/JavaScript AIR applications, the reviews I saw on Twitter and elsewhere were incredibly positive, so its worth checking out.

Nate (couldn’t find a last name) released a new open source project called Transmission that is designed to be a bridge between Java and AIR. As many of you know, Merapi was designed for the same purpose but Nate says he wanted to take advantage of the native processes available in AIR 2 to make the whole project much easier to use but also familiar to Merapi users.

Cool Flash & ActionScript Stuff
Last week was FITC in San Francisco and from what I could see, the most chatter surrounded a project by Joa Ebert called JITB that translates ActionScript into Java bytecode to run at nearly the same speed as native Java. Joa has a video on that post of it in action.

Another new project that stirred a lot of discussion this week was from Paul Taylor, who created tinytlf which is a very lightweight and modular text layout framework. Paul also released a post showing how tinytlf will handle advanced layouts. He plans on speaking about this at the upcoming 360|Flex in D.C.

Finally, the just released Adobe Edge had a number of fantastic articles, but, given that I am toying with game programming for AIR on Android, I found this article by Emanuele Feronato on the PushButton game engine to be intriguing.


Paras Sheth Brilliant post. Really nice.

Did you miss NativeApplicationUpdater for AIR?

Posted By Paras Sheth / Posted on 08/27/2010 at 1:56 AM

Brian Rinaldi Thanks! I actually did have that on my list but somehow it didn't get into this post so thanks for adding it.

Posted By Brian Rinaldi / Posted on 08/27/2010 at 4:22 AM

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My name is Brian Rinaldi and I am the Web Community Manager for Flash Platform at Adobe. I am a regular blogger, speaker and author. I also founded RIA Unleashed conference in Boston. The views expressed on this site are my own & not those of my employer.