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Thread: why use as3?

  1. #21
    Zombie Coder EvilKris's Avatar
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    Yup Tom I'd say you're somewhat of an authority in the Flash world. You certainly know more than most developers about the guts of AS2 & 3. The book idea is one you should seriously consider. Get a few of the folks here to contribute a couple of chapters and you could have a tasty little bit of passive income. Get a blog out there and stick some google ads on, who knows? Best case you'll end up with Adobe giving you a consulting job.

  2. #22
    hippie hater Cimmerian's Avatar
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    He have one already
    http://www.physicsdev.com/blog/

  3. #23
    Senior Member webgeek's Avatar
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    Books don't pay much if there are lots of authors. Making money on technical books means you keep the number of authors to a minimum. So Tom, it's all you by yourself

  4. #24
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Thanks mates, i´m glad that my posts are appreciated so much by some, makes me feel like i haven´t wasted all those years
    As Cimmerian pointed out i posted on the physicsdev blog a few times. I´d meanwhile like to post way more development related things and case examples but yeah, i didn´t have much time for such things recently, will try to get that sorted out, up to now i usually just posted on fk when a certain topic came up.


    Quote Originally Posted by EvilKris
    Yup Tom I'd say you're somewhat of an authority in the Flash world. You certainly know more than most developers about the guts of AS2 & 3. The book idea is one you should seriously consider. Get a few of the folks here to contribute a couple of chapters and you could have a tasty little bit of passive income. Get a blog out there and stick some google ads on, who knows? Best case you'll end up with Adobe giving you a consulting job.
    Thanks, now stop the praise, you´re making me ashamed
    As i said i intended to write the book together with several people from here but then there´s a quite big organisaton overhead for getting all chapters together and having them be halfway in a continuous coding style.
    Also i don´t know that many game developers who create things in AS3 and are into (and have time for) writing a book.
    I´ll see what i can do regarding the blog and my free time amount
    That said i don´t think Adobe would hire me regarding all the criticism i often post about Flash platform/technologies quirks (if only they´d know i do it because deep in my heart i still love flash despite all the moaning and therefore want it to improve further )

    Quote Originally Posted by webgeek
    Books don't pay much if there are lots of authors. Making money on technical books means you keep the number of authors to a minimum. So Tom, it's all you by yourself

    Haha, when thinking about writing a book my intention wasn´t to make lots of money with it, i just thought it was about time for such a book seeing flash game development focussed books i liked are mostly at least language side outdated and i felt like it was about time for one in the way i pictured it
    Regarding doing it all by myself: Hm, i like that whole collab synergy thing, you know (all besides the term itself )
    Last edited by tomsamson; 12-05-2007 at 04:46 AM.

  5. #25
    hippie hater Cimmerian's Avatar
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    Now thats weird but im seriouslly considering going back to AS2
    Linked Lists, BitmapData rendering, thats fast enough for me.

  6. #26
    Hype over content... Squize's Avatar
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    I'm curious to know, how many people have had to do an as3 project working to a deadline, and did you account for it being in as3 ( ie, cut back on the number of features or increase the development time ) or did you treat it exactly the same as you would a similar project in as2 ?

    What I'm getting at is, how many people would trust themselves to be able to turn around a client project in as3 right now, on time and on budget ( Well, as close as you can get ).

    Squize.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squize
    What I'm getting at is, how many people would trust themselves to be able to turn around a client project in as3 right now
    I've worked almost exclusively in AS3 for over a year now. The idea of retreating to AS2 is nothing shy of a nightmare... I just don't understand how anyone, after more than 20 minutes of familiarization, would still prefer the insanely obtuse way of instantiating visual elements in AS2.

    In estimation, building a project in AS3 weighs in at ~2/3 the development time.

    The one time I did have to build an AS2 project in the past year, however, it was really fun to rediscover that you can get away with ANYTHING. No errors! That's novel for about 2 minutes until you have no idea why things are going wrong. At that point you should start crying and trying to convince your client to pls switch to AS3.

  8. #28
    Hype over content... Squize's Avatar
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    Sorry, you mean you find it's quicker to develop in as3 ?

    Also could I ask if those projects were games or sites / ria ?

    Cheers,

    Squize.

  9. #29
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    yes, quicker in as3- much.

    sites/ria- though i approach game development in the same way.

  10. #30
    hippie hater Cimmerian's Avatar
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    The same way?
    And how would you handle, in a game, the unpredictable behavior of the gc so that in few minutes your game dont start to laaaaaaaaaaag eating more and more memory?

  11. #31
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    memory management is important in every single area of software development. there's nothing magical that happens with garbage collection when the application in question HAPPENS to be a game.

    do you think garbage collection in the avm1 is any better?

    i'd also argue that the garbage collector isn't unpredictable, but i guess that can be considered semantics.

  12. #32
    hippie hater Cimmerian's Avatar
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    memory management is important in every single area of software development. there's nothing magical that happens with garbage collection when the application in question HAPPENS to be a game.
    The GC sux with RIAs and sites too,however his weird behavior is more likely to not be seem because with RIAs, sites,whatever, is not always that you have to create and delete new items dynamically very oftem as it is in games
    do you think garbage collection in the avm1 is any better?
    humm...yes
    http://board.flashkit.com/board/showthread.php?t=750382

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cimmerian
    well, then i respectfully disagree. i do not think simply being responsible for tidying up after yourself equates to a worse garbage collector.

    i have a substantial amount of experience in both as2 and as3 development. are you coming from the standpoint of someone who doesn't have much as3 experience? i don't mean that to sound condescending, i'm just utterly bewildered that people involved in serious development of any sort would actually prefer as2!

  14. #34
    hippie hater Cimmerian's Avatar
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    Good you are so experienced, so can you answer my first question?
    How would you solve that
    http://board.flashkit.com/board/showthread.php?t=750382
    problem ?

  15. #35
    hippie hater Cimmerian's Avatar
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    Wait, have you read the link?
    Wasting my time here.

  16. #36
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    As newblack´s comments show there´s also a good chunk of flash platform content creators who prefer the worklow with as3, think its generally saving time compared to previous approaches and wouldn´t want to go back.
    To my experience those are mostly people who either only work on component based stuff or generally come from a more code centric angle, probably from another oop language and therefore often felt like how things could or had to be done in flash in visual creation manner were always weird and messy and the less picky compiler and no strict data typing etc etc were a lack, not offering more freedom and real rapid prototyping abilities.
    Correct me if i´m wrong newblack

    When i started out with Flash in Flash 3 days i was pretty much a greenhorn on coding side so i intially learnt working with flash in visual creation manner angle. Well, much else wasn´t possible in flash 3 anyway
    Anyway, so as flash evolved so did my coding skills, partially due to learning every AS version, but mostly because of having a programming education and working 4 years at a web agency (also working with various other web languages on RIAs before the term RIA was generated) under a boss who was a total oop fanatic.

    So yeah, that made me understand and work in more code centric oop manners.

    I´m used to both ways though and therefore have the feeling that both ways are good for something and both have their strengths and weaknesses.

    For example in a code centric only approach certain things can be coded faster and many things can be dbugged better, on the other side when one needs to use media assets coding all the usage and editing functioanlity for them instead of using a visual ide for such things is in my eyes quite a downside for example. Also if you knew what you were doing in the way more loose and less moany no strong data typing, no compiler moaning times of flash 6 you could create quite complex apps in a very short timespan, it was an ideal solution for real rapid prototyping then.
    That is for example also why languages like lua are more and more used for such things.

    On the garbage collector side people coming to flash from for example java often don´t get what our moaning is about regarding how the garbage collector works in flash 9/VM2 compared to how it worked in older flash players since in java similar "functionality" is the case for a long time.

    To compare stances lets see the main points of argumentation in a nutshell:

    people who moan aboutthe new garbage collector workflow are often not happy because there´s no command like just say delete someObject or someObject = null or for Mcs removeMovieClip or unloadMovie with the functionality they had in previous flash player versions
    (delete still exists but only works for things created as dynamic in first place and nulling an object only works the way you wanted if it doesn´t have active strong bindings/references/eventListeners in the moment you null it, commands like removeMovieClip and unloadMovie don´t exist anymore).
    This forces the developer to watch out more for references/eventListeners and generally have a closer look at ram usage to go sure he uses the ressources well under the new circumstances. Due to that and also the garbage collector generally kicking in for sweeps less often it is strongly suggested to reuse objects instead of constantly creating new ones, using weak listeners etc.

    On the upside the garbage collector now takes up less runtime performance (as it kicks in less often for example) and the new setup avoids circular referencing related issues.

    Overall on the garbage collector functionality point i´d like it if they kept the current Garbage Collector setup but still also have api commands which allow one to mark an object for instant delete from ram (no matter if it had references or not etc). As it is to me its a definitive downstep in usability for the developer and makes content more error prone and prone to use more system ressources.

    Regarding movieclip functionality i think its nice to have added and render events etc available if one wants to use them but if not the old workflow of beeing able to access a child mc inside an mc right away should be brought back. I also think even if one sets strong references/event listeners to a child movieclip and then changes the framehead to a frame where the child should be gone (blank keyframe in that layer) the child mc should be deleted from ram.
    There are various examples i could list for Movieclips which are in the same vein, overall MovieClips just need their old functionality back.

    Regading AS3 istelf i think it would be way more useful for non oop experienced people if the flash ide code editor and the debugger would be better.
    On syntax/api side it would help if there were wrapper commands which are set up more in an easy to use way for non oop people (and which wrap together several usual AS3 features). Sure one can code such a simplified bundle api oneself but yeah, therefore the one who does it should already know AS3 propperly, so..
    Last edited by tomsamson; 12-05-2007 at 01:40 PM.

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cimmerian
    Good you are so experienced, so can you answer my first question?
    How would you solve that
    http://board.flashkit.com/board/showthread.php?t=750382
    problem ?
    WOW. niiiiiice. Although you do not do me the honor of answering my questions, I'll offer more than I already have with yours. Firstly, I don't use MovieClips, so take some of this with a grain of salt... I'm assuming. The issue comes from exactly what I pointed out- reference. Because MovieClips aren't magically being created or attached, their instantiation is a little more in your own hands. By virtue of its timeline, you're not removing all references by setting a pointer to null. By calling stop on the MovieClip, I believe all references are removed- feel free to correct me on this.

    For the record, I did answer your first question- the same way I handle memory management in RIA development. My cosmic flaw was assuming you possessed the powers of inference.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cimmerian
    Wait, have you read the link?
    Wasting my time here.
    No, I took the time to cut out the link you posted in quoting you, but did not read the link.

  18. #38
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    No, calling stop on a MovieClip just makes the playhead of the mc stop.
    And what´s with all the anger in the discussion, calm down before you post, people.

  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomsamson
    As newblack´s comments show there´s also a good chunk of flash platform content creators who prefer the worklow with as3, think its generally saving time compared to previous approaches and wouldn´t want to go back.
    To my experience those are mostly people who either only work on component based stuff or generally come from a more code centric angle, probably from another oop language and therefore often felt like how things could or had to be done in flash in visual creation manner were always weird and messy and the less picky compiler and no strict data typing etc etc were a lack, not offering more freedom and real rapid prototyping abilities.
    Correct me if i´m wrong newblack
    right to a certain degree- i started with all visual flash stuff- MovieClips, with bizarre frame loops nested 4 children deep controlling unrelated assets was my introduction to code. I got to work at a great game design firm and focused on reusable programming... and haven't looked back. Flash is GREAT for rapid prototyping- but its usefulness is inversely proportionate to the complexity of the application being developed.

    Quote Originally Posted by tomsamson
    Regading AS3 istelf i think it would be way more useful for non oop experienced people if the flash ide code editor and the debugger would be better.
    On syntax/api side it would help if there were wrapper commands which are set up more in an easy to use way for non oop people (and which wrap together several usual AS3 features). Sure one can code such a simplified bundle api oneself but yeah, therefore the one who does it should already know AS3 propperly, so..
    I think this is a great idea. I don't so much hate the Flash authoring tool aso much as the idea of coding in its editor.

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomsamson
    And what´s with all the anger in the discussion, calm down before you post, people.
    Cimmerian got saucy; I merely reacted!

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