Daniel Dura

All About the Adobe Flash Platform

Archive for July, 2002

Its alive!

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After much frustration using the Amazon SOAP API, I have finally got Flash talking to it (albeit in a round about way).

What I chose to do was to use Cold Fusion MX components and Flash Remoting to talk to Amazon. I created a component in Dreamweaver to talk to the web service. The CFMX component then sends the data returned from the service to the Flash movie for processing.

Here is the trick: When talking to the Amazon API, you can not just invoke the function through the proxy with a couple of parameters that are strings. You must create a new structure in Cold Fusion and then pass that structure to the service.

For example:

myStruct = newStruct();
myStruct.asin = “12345678″;
myStruct.keywork = “Flash”;
// etc…etc…

Well, the backend is working and I should really be getting into the design phase, now that I hve all the results stored in objects. If you have any questions, email me! danny@danieldura.com

Written by Daniel Dura

July 29th, 2002 at 7:46 am

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Help out Mike Chambers

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Mike Chambers wants to test an app he has built using the recently released Flash Communications Server. Read his article here.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 23rd, 2002 at 10:31 am

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Where am I?

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Unfortunately, a large project has come up at work and I have been pretty much swamped. I should have a basic search using the Amazon API up by Wednesday. So, keep checking back.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 22nd, 2002 at 3:14 pm

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A good example…

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Well, it seems that Quasimondo has the same idea that I had…but he has made much more progress. Looks like he is plodding along, while I am still tinkering :) Hopefully I should have something visual up by this weekend.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 18th, 2002 at 5:42 pm

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New Flash Player Released

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Version 6.0.40.0 has been released. This is a BIG deal for application development. It corrects the binary post problem caused when using Flash Remoting from within Mozilla (beta versions, not v1), Netscape 6.x, and Opera 6.x browsers. It would also include the Netscape 7.x beta versions which are based on the Mozilla 0.x code.

Convince everyone to download it. Your mother, grandmother, local library, etc. It is your duty as a Flash developer.

Download it here.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 18th, 2002 at 7:14 am

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Flash Communications Server Components

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Macromedia has finally released the components for its Communications Server. And I quote:

“Seven of the Communication Components are now available for download. These components are available to all users of Macromedia Flash Communication Server MX, including trial users. In early August, additional components will be made available to registered users.”

I installed this server in about 5 minutes the other day and was able have a video conference with about five people. Great stuff! The possibilities are really endless with this. Make sure and download the trial and have some fun!

Written by Daniel Dura

July 18th, 2002 at 7:02 am

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Reading a WSDL file…

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After trying to rap my head around the WSDL file provided by Amazon.com, I realized I was getting a headache. The WSDL file is what tells the flash remoting service how to send a proper request to the web service to recieve a response. Amazon provided no documentation on the utilization of their web service using this file.

So….I did a little googling and found this tool. When using the SOAP menu, you can really save yourself some time decrypting a WSDL file and finding out how to properly format your services request in actionscript.

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with this company, I just thought they offered a good product. It goes a little overboard for my needs, but the 30 day trial worked for me.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 17th, 2002 at 7:43 pm

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What Next?

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Hmmm……I’m sitting here at work (shouldn’t i be working) thinking about what my next project should be. I really would like to do something else with XML and web services…..and I think I have found just the right thing.

Amazon Web Services

I think I will design an interface for searching and browsing the Amazon.com library of goods :) I know that there have been flash versions of this already, but I think this will be a good challenge. If you have any ideas as to what a GREAT Amazon.com client should have, tell me.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 17th, 2002 at 5:52 pm

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My First Application

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Well, I have just completed my first application. Showing the power of Flash, I was able to complete this small application in a couple of hours. Using the designer developer xml resource feed from Macromedia, I was able to create an application that:

Imports an XML feed from a remote server
Stores the XML in an Object
Populates a list box using the DataProviderClass
Dynamically updates text boxes as new items are selected
And, Uses a push button component to send the user to the webpage of the article

Well, it is not pretty, but it works. One little tidbit of info that might help you out is that flash (for security reasons) will not import XML from a remote server. To work around this, I created a php file that contained the line of code:

header(“Location: http://www.macromedia.com/desdev/resources/macromedia_resources.xml”);

This will also work in Cold Fusion using the cflocation tag. Check out the movie, and you can also download the .fla if you would like. If you have any questions, or suggestions for me, just send me an email! I’ll make sure and reply.

Written by Daniel Dura

July 17th, 2002 at 2:57 pm

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Here We Go…..

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Who would have thought? I have started my own blog. It seems like this is all the fad right now and I figured that if anyone wants to listen to what I have to say, then here you go!

Well, for the most part I do application development. At my full-time job we are porting all of our systems over to JSP using WebSphere and Universe databases. Lots of fun…. BUT, right now I have discovered a new passion, Flash MX application development. The new version of Flash is beginning to show the world that it has the ability to allow high level programming in a rich media environment. In short, as a programmer first and designer second, I LOVE IT!

So follow me on my journey, and watch as I screw up a few times and make some discoveries. If you have anything you would like to contribute, feel free! Just drop me a line. Hope you enjoy!

Written by Daniel Dura

July 15th, 2002 at 1:58 pm