AS3 Classes on GitHub

Just wanted to give a quick note that I’ve put some of my classes up on GitHub. That is the best way to keep track of some of the code as I’ll probably be updating that more than the blog when I make small changes. Feel free to fork or whatever it is people do with Git 🙂

Flash Game Development by Example Mini Review

When you think of where the Flash Platform is headed you’re undoubtedly talking about gaming. With the new Molehill stuff coming upon us and the ability to do crazy 3D stuff in the Flash player there’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that the platform is going to be a serious contender when it comes to games not only online but on mobile devices as well. Molehill doesn’t only mean 3D however and you can certainly develop some great 2D games that run really well on these devices as well. I’ve never been much of a game developer as my focus has always been mostly on creating interactive online sites/experiences so when I got hold of a copy of Flash Game Development by Example I was pretty happy to see that it outlines 9 different game types and walks you through creating them from start to finish.

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AS3: Drag a Clip Along an Arc

View Example
Download Source

A while ago I was creating a video player for a project that needed to have the scrubber sit on an arc and be draggable. I asked around on Twitter if anyone knew of something that had this type of functionality already built (because it seems like something I shouldn’t have to write from the ground up) and someone pointed me to senocular’s Path class. It seemed promising and turned out to be the perfect class I needed to make this work. I included the class in the download files just because I wanted to make sure all files are provided but if you’re going to use this make sure you grab it from his site as it’s probably the latest version and all credit goes to him for making the class.

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AS3: SoundManager v1.4

UPDATE 1/14/11: As pointed out in the comments by a few users, I just fixed a bug that didn’t allow you to replay a sound once it was played for the first time. Sorry about that. Please keep testing and sending in reports!

View SoundManager Documentation
View SoundItem Documentation
Download TweenLite (needed to run example files/SoundManager)
Download Classes & Example Files

The SoundManager has been the most popular item I’ve ever posted on this blog and I got a lot of e-mails through the years asking to update/make changes to it and also some really good feature requests as well as people actually putting in features and passing them back to me. Admittedly I don’t add very many sounds to my projects but it’s always been a goal of mine to go back and update the SoundManager since it is so popular (and I’d like to put more sounds into my own work). About two years ago I had a ton of e-mails from users with bugs and requests which I meant to implement. Unfortunately I went through an e-mail migration and I ended up losing a lot of those e-mails (sorry, so if you don’t see your changes and you e-mailed me, please send it again). Since then I’ve gotten some more e-mails and when I had time to put a new version together I did. I actually updated the classes three times and went back and forth on a bunch of issues but finally came up with this version which is pretty solid.

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What To Deliver A Flash Developer

Flash developers are usually the last line of defense (meaning that we are the last ones to touch the project before the client sees it) and there is a lot of pressure put on us to deliver a polished product. At the point we start, chances are the deadline has already been stretched due to hang ups in the process before we ever see what we’re about to get ourselves into and being organized and receiving well-organized assets/direction is the key to success. Ideally, you should really bring the developer in during the kick-off meetings as it will ease the process down the line and make everyone’s lives easier. Even with the list below, it’s always good to explain to the developer during the early stages your vision and concept for the site, the animation style, demographic, and similar items that will aid during the process of development. Sadly, this usually never happens and we’ve got to buckle down and micro-manage everything to make sure all systems are go.

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Tip: Output Trace Statements Through Terminal

Recently I’ve been using the technique found here for outputting trace statements to the terminal when viewing your sites in a browser and it has worked flawlessly for me. I’ve been doing a lot of projects lately that include database integration so they have to be run in a staging environment and tracing in the Flash IDE is not an option.

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Server Issues Resolved

My HUGE apologies for not realizing the site was down. I was mostly connected to the internet through VPN for the past few weeks as I was finishing a large project remotely for Razorfish and I just figured the issue was with the VPN connection until I tried to go to the site one day when I wasn’t on VPN. I spoke with MediaTemple about the issues and they pointed me to my .htaccess file. It turned out that was not the issue and the issue was what is outlined here. Thanks a ton to that article and now the site should be up and running correctly. PLEASE if you see anything wrong with the site e-mail me and let me know. Thanks and my apologies.

AS3: Collection, ValueObject, & Iterator

View Collection Documentation
View Iterator Documentation
View Value Object Documentation
Download Classes & Example Files

A while ago I blogged about converting Collection and Iterator classes to AS3 since storing data in ValueObjects has become a regular practice in my coding. I really like how VOs are strongly typed and how you use a Collection to hold all the data together nicely. I am working on a project right now that allowed me to see even better uses for these things so I added a couple of simple (but helpful) methods to my Collection class (most notably the ability to add an item at a specified index as well as output the data currently existing in the collection easily) and created a base ValueObject class that allows you to easily output the data in that VO.

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Tip: Convert An Object To A Class By Name

Have you ever had to convert an object into a class based on its name? If you’ve got a string representation of the object (like its class identifier from the library) you can convert it to the data type that you’d like. All you have to do is use the handy little method called getDefinitionByName().

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Tip: Tools To Document Your Code

I got an e-mail the other day from someone asking about what tools he can use to document his code. I had written a reply to him but I was using webmail and it froze up on me. I was able to, just in time, copy the reply over and saved it for later where I can reply when I got home using my regular e-mail program. Unfortunately I deleted the e-mail on accident and apparently it was from someone named Carlos.

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