Alaric Cole


6 October 2008



User level


How soon can you learn Adobe Flex 3? With this book's unique hands-on approach, you will be able to tinker with examples right away, and create your own Rich Internet Applications with Flex within the first few chapters. As you progress, you learn how to build a layout, add interactivity, work with data, and deploy your applications to either the Web or the desktop.
Learning Flex 3 offers step-by-step instructions that are clear and concise, along with tips and tricks that author Alaric Cole has gathered after years of using Flex and teaching it to fellow developers at Yahoo! You'll understand how Flex works, how to use the MXML markup language and work with ActionScript, how to deploy RIAs to the desktop using Adobe AIR, and much more.
Whether you're a beginner, or an experienced web developer coming to Flex from another platform, Learning Flex 3 is the ideal way to learn how to:
  • Set up your environment with FlexBuilder and Eclipse
  • Create a new Flex project
  • Use the different design views in Flex
  • Write code with MXML
  • Lay out your Flex application
  • Embed images and graphics
  • Build a user interface
  • Add interactivity with ActionScript
  • Handle user input
  • Move, display, and collect data
  • Add custom components with MXML
  • Add sound effects, filters, and transitions
  • Style your applications with CSS, skins, and themes
  • Deploy applications to the Web, or to the desktop using Adobe AIR
Also included are brief explanations of objects, classes, components, properties, methods, types, and other Flex attributes. You will find that Learning Flex 3 is not only the most complete tutorial for Flex, it's also the quickest way to get going with the latest version of this powerful framework.
The printed book is available through most major online and retail bookstores worldwide, and can be read online at Safari Books Online. For more information visit the O'Reilly store.
Learning Flex 3 © 2008 Alaric Cole. Reproduced by permission of O'Reilly Media Inc. All rights reserved.

Applying behaviors, transitions, and filters

All Flex visual components have a standard set of graphic filters and effects that let you create really expressive applications with minimal effort. Effects are auditory or visual changes to components, typically an animation of some form. Filters are static visual changes such as blurring or drop-shadows. In this chapter, you'll discover how incredibly easy it is to apply visual effects to your components with simple MXML.
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Styling applications

Flex comes with a powerful and extensible framework of components. The framework isn't bound to any one style or look. The Flex components do come with a default look and feel, but you can easily change them using styles. You have the ability to quickly modify specific style properties of individual components or even create styles that can be applied to all components. Using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), you can create reusable styles that let you make major changes to the look of your applications. You can even use custom graphics.
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