Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Adobe Flex Authors: Matthew Lobas, PR.com Newswire, Shelly Palmer, Kevin Benedict

Related Topics: Adobe Flex, Java IoT, ColdFusion, FlexSeminar.com

Adobe Flex: Article

"Real-World Flex" by Adobe's Christophe Coenraets

Tips and tricks from Adobe's intrepid Flex Evangelist

Some people take the dog for a walk, other go play a round of golf. Not Christophe Coenraets. His idea of a good time is to illustrate Flex and JMS integration by extending a simple "realtime feed" application that he built a while back! Web Developer's & Designer's Journal is proud to bring you each month two of the month's best tips from Adobe's intrepid Flex Hero.

Using Flex 2 with Flash Media Server
I recently built a proof of concept that included a call center integration scenario. The use case revolved around a user getting stuck while trying to complete an online process, and engaging in a real time collaboration session with a customer services representative to sort out the problem.

The nature of the collaboration between the end-user and the support representative was very rich and included the following features:

  1. Chat
  2. Videoconference / video chat
  3. The support representative was able to "drive" the end-user's UI
  4. The support representative was also able to remotely fill in the user's form. In other words, data typed in the support rep's application automatically appeared (in real time) in the user's app.
From the end-user point of view, all this was done "in context" without ever leaving the application, and without starting any other application.

The application turned out to be really easy to implement with Flex 2:

  • Features (1) and (3) were enabled by the new Message Service in Flex 2.
  • Feature (4) was enabled by the Data Services in Flex 2. Using the data services, two clients can point to the same destination (the same data set). Changes made by one client are automatically reflected in the other client. No code required!
  • Feature (2) was enabled by the Flash Media Server.
Here's a simple example of how to integrate Flex and Flash Media Server to support rich media streaming and video-conferencing. This is surprisingly easy to do with just a few lines of code.

To run this example you will have to:

  1. Install FlexBuilder 2. You can download the beta here: http://labs.adobe.com/.
  2. Install the Flash Media Server (you can download a free developer edition here: www.adobe.com/products/flashmediaserver/
  3. Download the sample application code here: http://coenraets.com/apps/fms.zip
  4. In C:\Program Files\Macromedia\Flash Media Server 2\applications\flex_videoconference, create a directory called flex_videoconference and copy the main.asc file in that directory
  5. Create a FlexBuilder project and copy fms.mxml and VideoContainer.as in that project
  6. Run fms.mxml
The application starts your webcam, publishes the captured video stream to Flash Media Server.and then "plays" the video streamed by Flash Media Sever in a second video component.

Embedding HTML in a Flex Application using an IFrame
I have recently been involved in several projects where there was a need to embed HTML content in a Flex application. Depending on the specific requirements of your application, there are a couple of approaches you can use...

  1. The Flex Text components (Label, Text, TextArea) support basic HTML formatting through their htmlText attribute. You can find an example of this approach in the Samples Explorer where the Code Viewer uses the HTML capabilities of the TextArea to provide syntax coloring.
  2. You can embed a Flex application in a page that also contains traditional HTML. The Flex application can communicate with the HTML document (and the other way around) through JavaScript. You can also embed multiple Flex applications in a page. These applications can then communicate directly with each others using the LocalConnection API.
Note: I am not advocating that you use this technique as your default approach to combine Flex and HTML content. Depending on your application, the approaches (1) and (2) described above may represent a better solution. If these approaches don't meet your specific requirements, the technique implemented in the attached example can be very useful.

In some cases, these approaches may not go far enough: You may need a single Flex application that embeds HTML content with no restriction in terms of HTML tags and features supported.

In this case, another approach is to position an IFrame on top of a specific area of your Flex application to provide a container for the HTML content which will then appear embedded in the application. This technique may initially sound complex or cumbersome to implement, especially if the different containers of your Flex application resize dynamically and you have to keep the IFrame in sync. In the attached example, I abstracted the complexity of this approach in an IFrame component written in mxml. The IFrame component extends Canvas and is used like any other Flex container. Behind the scenes, it acts as a proxy for the actual HTML IFrame (Figure 1). For example, when the IFrame component is resized or moved it automatically asks the HTML document to resize/move the actual IFrame.

More Stories By Christophe Coenraets

Christophe Coenraets currently works as a Senior Technical Evangelist at Adobe. Before joining Adobe, Christophe was an evangelist at Macromedia, focusing on Rich Internet Applications and Enterprise integration. Prior to Macromedia, Christophe was the head of Java and J2EE Technical Evangelism at Sybase, where he started working on Java Enterprise projects in 1996. Before joining Sybase in the US, Christophe held different positions at Powersoft in Belgium, including Principal Consultant for PowerBuilder, and Manager of the Professional Services organization. Before joining Powersoft, Christophe worked as a developer and architect on several retail and BPM projects. Christophe has been a regular speaker at conferences worldwide for the last 10 years.

Comments (3) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
SShah 06/14/06 05:02:53 AM EDT

Hello,

i have tried this example but getting the error that NetConnection object cannot be connected.Can anyone help me resolve this issue.

Web Developer's & Designer's Journal 05/22/06 04:16:47 PM EDT

Some people take the dog for a walk, other go play a round of golf. Not Christophe Coenraets. His idea of a good time is to illustrate Flex and JMS integration by extending a simple 'realtime feed' application that he built a while back! Web Developer's & Designer's Journal is proud to bring you each month two of the month's best tips from Adobe's intrepid Flex Hero.

Web Developer's & Designer's Journal 05/22/06 03:30:48 PM EDT

Some people take the dog for a walk, other go play a round of golf. Not Christophe Coenraets. His idea of a good time is to illustrate Flex and JMS integration by extending a simple 'realtime feed' application that he built a while back! Web Developer's & Designer's Journal is proud to bring you each month two of the month's best tips from Adobe's intrepid Flex Hero.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The 4th International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 17th International Cloud Expo - to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - announces that its Call for Papers is open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than
The 17th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. 17th International Cloud Expo, to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, APM, APIs, Microservices, Security, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal today!
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Red Hat's Chief Architect for the Internet of Things and Intelligent Systems, described how to revolutionize your archit...
The 5th International DevOps Summit, co-located with 17th International Cloud Expo – being held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real results. Among the proven benefits, DevOps is corr...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Secure Infrastructure & Services will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Secure Infrastructure & Services (SIAS) is a managed services provider of cloud computing solutions for the IBM Power Systems market. The company helps mid-market firms built on IBM hardware platforms to deploy new levels of reliable and cost-effective computing and high availability solutions, leveraging the cloud and the benefits of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS...
To many people, IoT is a buzzword whose value is not understood. Many people think IoT is all about wearables and home automation. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, discussed some incredible game-changing use cases and how they are transforming industries like agriculture, manufacturing, health care, and smart cities. He will discuss cool technologies like smart dust, robotics, smart labels, and much more. Prepare to be blown away with a glimpse of the future.
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
Internet of Things is moving from being a hype to a reality. Experts estimate that internet connected cars will grow to 152 million, while over 100 million internet connected wireless light bulbs and lamps will be operational by 2020. These and many other intriguing statistics highlight the importance of Internet powered devices and how market penetration is going to multiply many times over in the next few years.
17th Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises are using some form of XaaS – software, platform, and infrastructure as a service.
The basic integration architecture, as defined by ESBs, hasn’t changed for more than a decade. Most cloud integration providers still rely on an ESB architecture and their proprietary connectors. As a result, enterprise integration projects suffer from constraints of availability and reliability of these connectors that are not re-usable across other integration vendors. However, the rapid adoption of APIs and almost ubiquitous availability of APIs amongst most SaaS and Cloud applications are rapidly redefining traditional integration approaches and their reliance on proprietary connectors. ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures traffic gets delivered faster, safer, and more reliably than ever.
"We have a tagline - "Power in the API Economy." What that means is everything that is built in applications and connected applications is done through APIs," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at Akana, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 16th Cloud Expo, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
WebRTC converts the entire network into a ubiquitous communications cloud thereby connecting anytime, anywhere through any point. In his session at WebRTC Summit,, Mark Castleman, EIR at Bell Labs and Head of Future X Labs, will discuss how the transformational nature of communications is achieved through the democratizing force of WebRTC. WebRTC is doing for voice what HTML did for web content.
Today air travel is a minefield of delays, hassles and customer disappointment. Airlines struggle to revitalize the experience. GE and M2Mi will demonstrate practical examples of how IoT solutions are helping airlines bring back personalization, reduce trip time and improve reliability. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Dr. Sarah Cooper, M2Mi’s VP Business Development and Engineering, will explore the IoT cloud-based platform technologies driving this change including privacy controls, data transparency and integration of real time context wi...
Buzzword alert: Microservices and IoT at a DevOps conference? What could possibly go wrong? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by Jason Bloomberg, the leading expert on architecting agility for the enterprise and president of Intellyx, panelists peeled away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of our distributed cloud environment, and we must architect and code accordingly. At the very least, you'll have no problem fillin...
The Internet of Things is not only adding billions of sensors and billions of terabytes to the Internet. It is also forcing a fundamental change in the way we envision Information Technology. For the first time, more data is being created by devices at the edge of the Internet rather than from centralized systems. What does this mean for today's IT professional? In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists addressed this very serious issue of profound change in the industry.
Internet of Things (IoT) will be a hybrid ecosystem of diverse devices and sensors collaborating with operational and enterprise systems to create the next big application. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Bramh Gupta, founder and CEO of robomq.io, and Fred Yatzeck, principal architect leading product development at robomq.io, discussed how choosing the right middleware and integration strategy from the get-go will enable IoT solution developers to adapt and grow with the industry, while at the same time reduce Time to Market (TTM) by using plug and play capabilities offered by a robust IoT ...
It is one thing to build single industrial IoT applications, but what will it take to build the Smart Cities and truly society-changing applications of the future? The technology won’t be the problem, it will be the number of parties that need to work together and be aligned in their motivation to succeed. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jason Mondanaro, Director, Product Management at Metanga, discussed how you can plan to cooperate, partner, and form lasting all-star teams to change the world and it starts with business models and monetization strategies.
SYS-CON Events announced today that BMC will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. BMC delivers software solutions that help IT transform digital enterprises for the ultimate competitive business advantage. BMC has worked with thousands of leading companies to create and deliver powerful IT management services. From mainframe to cloud to mobile, BMC pairs high-speed digital innovation with robust IT industrialization – allowing customers to provide amazing user experiences with optimized IT per...
There will be 150 billion connected devices by 2020. New digital businesses have already disrupted value chains across every industry. APIs are at the center of the digital business. You need to understand what assets you have that can be exposed digitally, what their digital value chain is, and how to create an effective business model around that value chain to compete in this economy. No enterprise can be complacent and not engage in the digital economy. Learn how to be the disruptor and not the disruptee.