In this special issue, we’ll be looking at a broad range of ActionScript programming topics – everything from the very basics of programming to specialised subjects such as serializing data and manipulating XML. So whether you are a new ActionScript programmer or an old hand, we hope you will find something of interest.
My own interest in ActionScript began with the development of Amethyst, the Visual Studio Flash Platform IDE from my company, SapphireSteel Software. Having been a programmer for almost 30 years, in languages ranging from Smalltalk to C#, I was initially sceptical about using ActionScript. I assumed that it was just a simple ‘scripting language’ – the sort of thing you might use to dash off a few lines of code but not to develop a project of any complexity. I soon discovered that my assumption was incorrect. ActionScript 3 is a powerful Object Oriented language that has the added advantage of being tightly integrated with Flash. In fact, my company has now developed some major applications in ActionScript. The current version of the Amethyst IDE includes a drag-and-drop Flex 3 and 4 design environment. Currently we are developing a new drag-and-drop designer which will provide similar features for non-Flex Flash applications. All of this coding has been done in ActionScript. Many thousands of lines of ActionScript!
This special issue gathers together a number of my ActionScript programming columns to explain how ActionScript can be used for creating Flash, Flex and AIR applications. If you are new to ActionScript, begin with my series on ‘Starting ActionScript Programming. If you want more of a challenge, you may want to read my guide to programming an adventure game.
ActionScript is a great language. I hope this special issue will help you to use it more productively – for both business and pleasure.
10 Amethyst The Flash Platform in Visual Studio
12 Introducing Amethyst A first look at the core features of the Amethyst Professional IDE
- Adventures in Flex
16 Flex 4 The Problem with Children
22 Flex 4 Parental Concerns
- Actionscript Programming
26 Objects and Associative Arrays Why an ActionScript Object is like a Dictionary
30 Create an Object- Handler Class
36 Writing A Better Object
- Adventure Game In ActionScript
42 Adventure Game In ActionScript
46 Serializing Objects
50 Object Hierarchies
54 Deploy To Android
60 Interacting with Game Objects
- Adventure in Actionscript
64 Putting XML ToWork
68 A Flex FAQ Browser
72 Adding Categories To XML
- Actionscript in Action
76 Starting ActionScript Programming
96 Amethyst Puts Flash In Visual Studio But can it compete with Silverlight?
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