Marching on and gearing up
Spring melted away, Summer sizzled, Fall slipped away and now we are at Winter’s doorstep. I
only know this because all of my local stores have been decorated with Christmas stuff for the
last 3 months
The Apache Flex team has been getting into the groove and moving things forward. As of
the 13th of November, the “Apache Flex SDK Installer” has been approved and posted to
the website, work on Apache Flex 4.9.0 is progressing nicely, and steps are being taking to
graduate as a top-level Apache project.
Apache Flex Highlights from October
- Lots of bug fixes are being committed. 40 bugs were submitted by the community, and 25 were fixed by both the community and Apache Flex committers. Most of the other tasks are longer-term “issues” that will take some time.
- Continuing work on the new compiler. Expect to see more shortly as everybody gets their heads around the new Falcon compiler.
- LOTS of additional tests have been written for Mustella, our testing suite. To run a full test suite it takes HOURS. More tests are coming all the time to help us make sure we don’t break your existing apps as we move the platform forward.
- The Apache Flex SDK installer was approved. This allows you to have a one-click (plus a few other clicks to accept the license agreements) install of the current SDK, in a format that you can use with your favorite IDE (including Adobe Flash Builder and JetBrain’s IntelliJ). More about that below.
- The Apache Flex 4.9.0 SDK is in the works and progressing nicely. You can check out the “in development” version at https://svn.apache.org/repos/asf/incubator/flex/sdk/branches/develop/
- Apache Flex, in addition to many other topics were talked about at 360|MIN in Las Vegas. A few of our committers attended. You can grab the videos from this conference (along with other 360 Conference videos) at http://www.360stack.com/session-videos/
- Justin Mclean and Bertrand Delacretaz made the long trip to Europe to represent Apache Flex at ApacheCon Europe. Justin did a great presentation on what Apache Flex is, and where it fits into the Apache model.
About the Apache Flex SDK Installer
The Apache Flex SDK Installer AIR application provides an easy, single-click installation of the
Apache Flex SDK and all its dependencies. This will make it suitable for working with IDEs
such as Adobe Flash Builder, FDT, IntelliJ IDEA, FlashDevelop, etc.
The application downloads the following:
- Apache Flex SDK
- The AIR SDK (Windows vs. Mac) based on the current platform
- Adobe Flash Player playerglobal.swc
- Open Source Media Framework (OSMF)
- Adobe Text Layout Format (TLF)
Optionally, the application will download these files if the user wants:
- Adobe BlazeDS
- Adobe Embedded Font Support
The application ships with an auto-update functionality that will prompt the users to upgrade to
the latest version when a new release is made available.
In the upcoming releases of the Apache Flex SDK Installer, we are planning on adding a
number of cool features including:
- Support for numerous locales including English (UK), English (Australia), Greek, Dutch and Portugese
- Ability to switch between Apache Flex SDK and Flash runtime versions
- Faster installation and MD5 verification by using Worker threads
- Built in support to the brand new Mavenizer/Deployer utilities
An installer badge is available at http://incubator.apache.org/flex/utilities.html#installerBadge
If you have a blog or a website, you can copy-paste the html code snippet on your sites. This
will help promote Apache Flex and give more end-users very easy access to the Apache Flex
SDK. They will be able to get setup and start coding within minutes.
Please post directly on the email@example.com mailing list for any feedback or
feature requests you may have.
How can I help?
Find a bug and smash it!Take a look at the bugs that are currently open at https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/FLEX.
Download the source code, and fix one. Generate a .PATCH file and attach it to the bug. We
all benefit from bugs getting closed, and this is the easiest way to do it. We have been marking
some bugs in JIRA as “Easy” so community members can get their feet wet. Many of the easy
bugs have pretty good description on how to fix the issue.
Tell your friends!
Projects at Apache have no marketing budget. We rely solely on word-of-mouth and social
marketing. Drop in on a user-group meeting, if one is near-by. Start telling us if you are using
the SDK in production, and how it is working for you.
Join the Apache Flex mailing list!
Have other community members do the same. Participate and lend your expertise where you
There are two mailing lists — one for people who want to help improve and contribute to the
SDK (flex-dev) and one for people who make applications with the SDK (flex-users). At this
time most of the discussion is happening in flex-dev, but we expect a lot more to be happening
on flex-users soon
About ‘Open Spoon Foundation’
The Open Spoon Foundation was setup by the Adobe community in 2011 to capture the collective
experience of those individuals implementing solutions on the Flex framework and to apply that
knowledge in a constructive manner through defect patching, feature contribution and addressing
aspects of the framework that limit extensibility. Spoon has a membership of several hundred and
growing (a number of who are Apache Flex committers and PMC members).