DAT Stuff

Random thoughts and observations from DAT

Flexing

One thing I love about blogs are sites like Technorati that make it easy for others to find blog entries. For example, John Dowdell found my post on Flex. He found my post using Technorati, and I found his the same way. I’m betting we used different search terms to find them, but the fact that one service connected us is pretty cool.

But what I really wanted to write about is Flex itself. I’ve always been intrigued by Flash, but could never justify the cost of the Flash development tools. I’ve looked at OpenLaszlo, which is great for the price (free) but lacks a good graphical development tool. If your idea of an IDE is Notepad, OpenLaszlo may be just what you need. They go one step further with their Eclipse plugin, but all it really provides is coding assistance, not graphical design tools.

I downloaded FlexBuilder 1.5, but haven’t had much time to work with it. With the little bit I have done, I’ve been impressed with the tools. What scares me is the price. What does it cost? Actually I have no idea. If you go to the Flex page and click on “Purchase Information“, you get a page that I interpret as “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it”.

I did see information about a non-commercial license, but it was confusing. It’s actually a non-commercial deployment license, implying that you don’t need it until you are ready to deploy your application. However, the copy of FlexBuilder I downloaded requires a license after an initial trial period, so it may expire before I can build anything.

Maybe I should skip version 1.5 and check out Flex 2 at their Labs site.

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