FlashForward Austin 2006 next week, will be presenting on Component Development in the Flex World

Next week FlashForward will be held in Austin, TX and I’ll be there giving a session on Component Development in the Flex World on Tuesday, September 12, 2006 3:00-4:15 in Salons D/E.

The FlashForward crew have been working hard with every event to grow, making great changes, and listening to suggestions. One thing that I’m especially looking forward to (other than visiting Austin for the first time and hanging out with friends) is that the length of the sessions have been extended by 15 minutes. I know in the past I’ve found it difficult to finish on time when trying to dig into more details on a topic. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one that asked for this and am looking forward to seeing how it works out.

My session will be an introductory session on developing components in Flex. I will cover when you might want to build an MXML vs Pure ActionScript component, setting up the structure of a component, implementing styles, events, databinding, and packaging a component. There’s no way I could cover everything about components even with the extra 15 minutes but this session should help Flash and Flex Developers get a good understanding of component development in the Flex world.

One thing to note, this session won’t be focused purely on advanced component development like previous sessions that I have given. I will also touch upon Component Based Development principals, as Flex Framework and MXML are an ideal platform for such a development process which has many benefits to UI programming.

See you all in Austin, and if you will be there pass by and say hi!

Enable SWF Files as a Supported File Type in Firefox on OS X

I’m posting this for myself and in case anyone finds it useful. There currently is no stand alone native Flash Intel Mac Player, so I resort to dragging SWF files to Firefox often. One thing that bothered me was the inability to drag a SWF onto the Firefox icon in the Finder or selecting Firefox as the default file handler for SWF files, instead you have to drag the SWF file to an open Firefox window. Turns out it was an easy change. After a look at the contents of Firefox.app and adding swf as a supported file type, it turns out to be a quick change. And rather than having to do this manually each time I upgrade Firefox, I decided to create a patch file that way I can just quickly add back the support after I upgrade Firefox


  1. Download the archive (Firefox Patch)
  2. Expand the archive
  3. Open terminal and navigate to the folder
  4. Assuming Firefox is in your applications folder, execute the command “patch -uN /Applications/Firefox.app/Contents/Info.plist ./firefox.patch”
  5. For the Finder to pick up the change in the support file type you have two options
    1. Restart your mac
    2. Create a copy of Firefox, delete the original, and rename the copy back. Creating a copy causes the Finder to re-evaluate the support files types without needing to restart your mac

I’ve used this with Firefox 1.5.x and 2.0 beta1-rc3 with no problems.

Speaking at FlashForward 2006 Austin on Flex Component Development

For the first time, FlashForward will be held in Austin September 11th to the 14th, and I’ll be there speaking on the topic of Component Development in the Flex World. Flex is the ideal component based development platform, and I strongly believe in the power of knowing how to develop them, even if they are basic and will not be distributed. Component based development helps break down large problems into achievable ones, while still maintaining excellent quality (here are some thoughts I had back in Sept 03 on the topic).

If you haven’t build components before, never built component in Flex, or just interested to see how easy it is to get started, then you’ll enjoy this session

Session Description:

Flex is an ideal Flash® application development platform that takes great advantage of built-in and custom-made components. For this reason, developing a good understanding of Flex components will help you build better applications faster, with fewer bugs.

In this session, Chafic will detail the internals of how components are structured beginning with the basics, walking through the process of building a first component and providing details about the different development options. Attendees will gain insight into what makes up a component as a basis to extend existing components or develop their own.

Topics covered include: the hierarchical structure of the Flex Component Framework, component development with MXML and ActionScript 3.0, component development with ActionScript 3.0 only, building custom events, implementing data binding, implementing style support.

Prior experience with Flex is not required, although helpful.

This will be my first time in Austin, if you are attending make sure to say hi

Moving to WordPress

I’m preparing to move over to WordPress in the coming two weeks. Just wanted to let everyone know in case there is any downtime. This will also include a re-design of rewindlife and more regular posting