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Random thoughts on Flash Remoting:

This is where I get to ramble when I feel like it. Kind of like a blog, but it's not a blog. This is a blog. ;-).

98 posts.

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OOP Sacrilege in Flash MX 2004

Wednesday, October 29, 2003 2:43:46 PM

I posted a new editorial article giving a few thoughts on the new components in Flash MX 2004.

"One of the first things a programmer learns is to reuse code. One of the first things an OOP programmer learns is to build objects that are encapsulated. Encapsulation is an easy principle to understand, and should be thought of as the Prime Directive when you are programming using OOP. . .Macromedia must have skipped that class. . . .(more)"

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Site updates...RIA links

Thursday, October 23, 2003 10:22:26 AM

I've made a few minor changes in the site and plan to add some more features. One feature, suggested by Marc Garrett, is to add a section of links to successful RIAs that use Flash Remoting. If anyone has any links they'd like to share, send them to me at tom AT flash-remoting.com or put them in the comments here and I'll post them.

One of the other changes I made was to stop blocking Netscape 4 from the site. I think that developer who still uses Netscape 4 to browse the web is probably doing so for reasons other than convenience. . .to be honest I don't know what the reason would be. In any event, NN 4 will get basically a text-only page.

I've also started adding a few live FR examples, like the Amazon search on this page and the Community MX feed on this page.

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Interesting blog item about RIAs and Flash Remoting

Tuesday, October 21, 2003 10:25:30 AM

Sean Voisen posted a blog entry today that talked about using Flash Remoting in enterprise-level applications. It is a good read: http://voisen.org/archives/flash_mx/000341.php. This was one of his comments: "I won’t go into exact detail on what the application is or what it does, but suffice it to say that it’s big. Real big. Thousands of ActionScript files big. It’s a project that would have been impossible (or at least very time-consuming and difficult) without the advent of Flash MX and Flash Remoting." I couldn't agree more.

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Using Java methods in CF.query

Monday, October 20, 2003 8:33:12 PM

There do not seem to be too many people using Server-side ActionScript (.asr files) in Flash Remoting, but it's a shame because it's a cool language that is based on ECMAScript and has access to the Java language as well.

One thing you won't find in the documentation about Server-side ActionScript is how to access individual fields from the result of a CF.query() call. It is not documented, but a query object returned by a call to CF.query() is related to a java.sql.resultset, and as such, you can use methods of the resultset on it. I did a little poking around today, as prompted by a question on the Flash Remoting forum, and came up with a few examples. By parsing the result on the server, you do not have to return a RecordSet object to Flash if all you need is one value. The undocumented methods are highlighted.

// The following functions use the Northwind database

// getID() gets the max id on the Products table and returns it as an integer

function getID() {
  var theSql = "SELECT Max(ProductID) as MaxID ";
  theSql += " FROM Products";
  var theRS = CF.query({datasource:"Northwind", sql:theSql});
  // The next line moves the record to the first row in the resultset
  theRS.first();
  // We return the MaxID field by using getInt(fieldname)
  return theRS.getInt("MaxID");
}

// This function uses getString() to return a string value

function getProductName(productid) {
  var theSql = "SELECT ProductName ";
  theSql += " FROM Products WHERE ProductID = " + productid;
  var theRS = CF.query({datasource:"Northwind", sql:theSql});
  // The next line moves the record to the first row in the resultset
  theRS.first();
  // We return the ProductName field by using getString(fieldname)
  return theRS.getString("ProductName");
}

// This function uses getString() again, but iterates through the results
// and packs the strings into an array.

function getCategoryArray() {
  var theSql = "SELECT CategoryName";
  theSql += " FROM Categories";
  var theRS = CF.query({datasource:"Northwind", sql:theSql});
  //Create an array and give it a zero element
  var theArray = new Array();
  theArray.push(["Choose a category"]);
  // The next line moves the record to the first row in the resultset
  theRS.first();
  // Now we use the recordCount property of the resultset to create the loop
  for(var i=0; i < theRS.recordCount; i++) {
    // Grab each CategoryName using getString and pack into the array
    theArray.push(theRS.getString("CategoryName"));
    // Use the next() method to move to the next record
    theRS.next();
  }
  return theArray;
}

// This function simply returns a list of all undocumented properties

function getCFQueryProps() {
  var theSql = "SELECT min(productid) ";
  theSql += " FROM Products";
  var theRS = CF.query({datasource:"Northwind", sql:theSql});
  var theArray = new Array();
  theArray.push(["**Properties of CF.query**"]);
  // Loop through all visible properties (and methods) of query object
  for(i in theRS) theArray.push(i);
  // and sort for display
  theArray.sort();
  return theArray;
}

See the example in action here and download fla and asr files zipped here.

The book has a few examples on using SSAS to manipulate files and directories, send and retrieve emails, among other things. The directory list example is here.

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New Remoting article

Thursday, October 16, 2003 9:22:42 AM

Paul Newman has a new article at Community MX that uses Flash Remoting to do searches on the Community MX content. The article talks about some of the problems he had dealing with the Flash Pro components. The completed project is a Dreamweaver MX extension that works as a floating panel in the Dreamweaver programming environment.

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