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I've been seeing a lot of buzz about Flex lately and I'm getting more and more interested. From what I can tell, it is or is becoming the preferred platform for cross-platform development. I'm looking for advice on getting started. I've looked around and there appear to be several open source development environments. What do the TechHui Flexers use?

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From what I can tell, it is or is becoming the preferred platform for cross-platform development

I agree. I think Flex and Silverlight are the future of RIA.

Its definitely worth it to spring for Adobe's Flex Builder, which is basically a plugin that runs in Eclipse. There are a number of recommended books and other resources in the TechHui Flex Developers group.

I would read up on the Cairngorm Microarchitecture. TechHuian Bruce Kim has written a nice open source Flex framework you may want to check out. For an example of an amazing Flex app check out local company Sprout's SproutBuilder.
Thanks for the quick response! I saw a reference to the Cairngorm project earlier today. After I have gotten a clue, I'll download the trial of Flex Builder. I'll look into all of these resources for sure.
IntelliJ IDEA provides a little Flex support (code completion, navigation, refactoring). It's not WYSIWYG like Flex Builder, and I haven't used Flex yet, but I like IDEA's support for other web technologies (JavaScript, HTML, CSS, JSP, Java, etc), so you might find it a better fit depending on your architecture, especially if you like to get into your code.

http://www.jetbrains.com/idea/features/javascript_editor.html#flex
Marc Hughes wrote a simple datagrid that supports direct input. The last time I gave it a spin it showed promise but was a bit buggy (which he admits to in the docs.)

I also remember a commercial Flex component shop showing off a JTable like grid with pluggable editors at the Web 2.0 expo but the name eludes me. If I think of it I'll post again.

Haken said:
Hi,

I'm interested in developing something with Flex also. Do you know if there are data grids that'll allow one to do entries? All the examples I've seen so far do not allow entries.

-Haken
I'm dabbling in Flex, haven't landed any work that requires it but I sprung for Flex Builder 3 ...
Cool, I'll have to check it out... in one afternoon I built a MobileMe Gallery app that read in the RSS feed and parsed it, etc... very similar to the flickr demos with the transitions, etc. Of course for me, most new technologies are the same. I get up and running on the simple stuff quick but then you use it for a real project and all of a sudden the sharp edges show up... Rails was the same experience for me. Once I deviated from the beaten path and went off into the weeds it was not fun anymore =)

Haken said:
Same here. I was amazed at how quickly one can build something with it right out of the box without ever seeing Flex before. Check out the restaurant widget on my profile. Took about a day's work spread over a couple of weekends. When I have the chance, I'm going to fix some of the bugs and improve on it so that it'll be more interactive.

dote said:
I'm dabbling in Flex, haven't landed any work that requires it but I sprung for Flex Builder 3 ...
Cool stuff Haken, is the data coming from a db? XHR? Or flat file?

Haken said:
Same here. I was amazed at how quickly one can build something with it right out of the box without ever seeing Flex before. Check out the restaurant widget on my profile. Took about a day's work spread over a couple of weekends. When I have the chance, I'm going to fix some of the bugs and improve on it so that it'll be more interactive.

dote said:
I'm dabbling in Flex, haven't landed any work that requires it but I sprung for Flex Builder 3 ...
Cool site! Let me know of you need more web dev/design volunteers to help out =) Sign me up! He he he

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