Flex 2.0 Primitive Explorer

March 14th, 2007

One of the things lacking in Flex 2.0 is the ability to easily draw primitive objects. Whether it be for style enabled itemrenderers, programmatic skins, or a style enabled rating component like the one included with this explorer as a sample. I’ve abstracted the primitive algorithms into handy UIComponents. Direct access to the static drawing utility class is available.

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Teoti Graphix has just released the first in a collection (FSCollectionFX1) of professional Flex 2 components. What I consider to be the 1st real professional commercial set available for Adobe Flex 2. This collection is feature packed; covering background look and feel, Pallets, Form controls, and containers.

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I’ve updated the Flex 2.0.1 Tree with Spring Loaded Folders code to take care of a couple small bugs, plus added some features. Support for optional restricted operations during both drag and drop (including inheritance support). Optional drag proxy when dragging multiple items. Operation restriction when dragging into originating node (into self).

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Well here is my version of an extended Flex tab navigator. I implemented a proper proxy image for the drag operations. Dragging between navigators (very handy for larger applications). Got your standard close button happening, optional of course (as a style). Click an item in the popup list, if not visible the item clicked becomes the first tab. Drag from the popup list is implemented. Drag and drop into a navigator container places the tab as the first item.

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I’ve decided to both update the sample on the original post, and explain the error in a new post for those that have already downloaded the example. Turns out it’s actually something to remember.

In today’s post Flex 2.0 Tree control with Spring Loaded Folders there was a nasty framework bug. The bug only happens sometimes so it was not detected right away. None the less it is a show stopper for those wishing to use the technique on the tree control.

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Although the techniques described here can be applied in other ways, and on other components; one of the most practical is the tree control.

When dragging items in a Flex application the user is mouse blocked. The left mouse button is used to initiate, and keep alive the drag operation. The tree control being comprised of folders and items posses a particular problem. If the user wishes to drag the items into a closed folder, the user would have to first open the desired destination folder, then perform the drag operation. 

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A couple of people over on Flexcoders have expressed interest in customizing the Flex divider box. As this is something I happened to have played with, I thought I would share it. Styled gradient fill, close and open state button, border colors, and a couple of other goodies.

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Adobe has released the latest and greatest version of the Flex product line. There are quite a lot of fixes and improvements. See below links. The modules frame work is included for larger applications, I’m looking forward to getting my hands dirty with that, as well as the runtime CSS styling, a feature much anticipated. 

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I’ve been working with Flex now for just over a year, starting with Flex 1.5. At the time I kind of stumbled onto it through a blog post (can’t recollect which) and decided to try it out. Though Flex 1.5 was interesting, and the eye candy it allowed me to produce exciting, the price tag was not for the weary. Flex 2.0 however changed all that.  

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