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MAX 2008 Sneak Peek: ActionScript 3 as a Server-Side Language

While I wasn't able to make it to MAX this year, I did follow Serge Jespers and Andrew Shorten's live blogging of the keynotes and the sneak peek session. Lots of amazing sneaks revealed tonight, but by far the best announcement for developers (in my opinion) was ActionScript 3 as a server-side language. I had actually blogged about how I wish this would be released back in July, 2007.

What does this mean for developers?

From what I read in the live blog, it allows you to write ActionScript 3 which runs on the server by defining a .sas file containing your AS3 code. In the same file you can also define code to run both on the server and in the client by setting a runat variable: runat="client" for client side code and runat="server" for server-side code.

As you can see in the photo above, pulled from the live blog feed, you can run ActionScript code on the server from within your normal client-side application code. If you can't quite make it out, the photo is showing MXML in Flex Builder.

And in this photo you can see how ActionScript can be embedded within HTML, just like PHP, etc. Notice how both client and server-side code allow calls directly to databases with an executeQuery() function, passing in an SQL statement.

I'm eager to hear more about this, but from what I can gather, unfortunately not much else was mentioned at the sneak peek session. Nothing on Adobe Labs yet, either. As more details become available, I will certainly be sure to blog about them.

Update: Looks like it is coming with the next release of ColdFusion server, codenamed Centaur, which makes a lot of sense. Some additional details can be found over at this blog post.

How to Fix the WordPress Upload Issue with Flash Player 10

If you work with WordPress 2.6 or before and have recently installed Flash Player 10, then you probably realized that the upload dialog box has stopped working. This is due to a security update the Adobe made in the latest version of the Flash Player.

I have seen a lot of people complaining about this (and Adobe has responded really well and explained their solid reasoning), but the fix is actually really simple and takes only two minutes to install. Just download the ZIP file mentioned in this blog comment on WordPress.org, copy the included files over your current installation, and you'll be all set. The fix includes a new version of SWFUpload, which is used on the WordPress upload page in the admin panel.


I just launched a quick 5 minute project:


As a developer, I get this question from clients all the time, so I thought it time to create a simple service where I could send them to check.

In the future I'd like to have the site automatically test to see if the version reported from SWFObject is the same as the latest version, and if not, provide a link (or better yet, Express Install) to the latest version. However, I'd prefer to not have to keep the latest version number updated by hand, so if anyone knows where I can find an official data feed (RSS, a simple text file, etc) of the latest general public release version, please post in the comments.


Logobama – The Barack Obama Logo Creator

LogobamaCreated by the guys (or Pirates, as they prefer to be called) over at Substance, Logobama lets you upload a photo to create a custom Barack Obama logo in sizes to fit user icons for Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, YouTube, Digg, LinkedIn, Flickr, and others.

This is a great example of how to use various services, such as Flickr, to fit your simple mashup needs -- just like David and Shaun spoke about at FITC Hollywood a few months ago. Great idea, fellas!

Adobe Acquires Buzzword

According to Ryan Stewart of Adobe, it was announced this evening that Adobe has acquired Virtual Ubiquity, and thus their product Buzzword. For those who may not know, Buzzword is a complete word processor and document sharing application written completely in Flex. Virtual Ubiquity has an informative blog post about the acquisition as well.

Congrats to Dave Coletta and team! It is great to see Flex RIAs taking off and to know that all the resources available to Adobe will be put behind this amazing product.

Flickr Adds crossdomain.xml to Image Server

This morning Flickr finally added a crossdomain.xml file (located here) to their image server. No more setting up a proxy on your server to access the bitmap data of Flickr images!

More details can be found on the Yahoo! Flash Blog.

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