Posts Tagged ‘Flex’

PHP That Just Works

September 18th, 2009
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I’m not one of those developers that likes to waste time setting up my dev environment. If I have a project to complete, I should be coding, not messing with config files, compiling Apache or messing with PHP to load that extension I just found out I needed. I like messing with my machine but not with an impending deadline.

With all this in mind, I’ve tried to simplify my entire dev environment over the years… not from a perspective of using simple tools and sticking to basics, but instead from a perspective of optimizing my workflow and keeping my development moving. In the middle of a project, I feel that systems admin focus should be on tweaking the production machines, rather than screwing around with my local dev box.

Zend Server CE Control PanelAlways looking for ways to make development easier, I decided to give the Zend Server CE (Community Edition) a try. The idea is that it installs your PHP, Apache, MySQL (with PHPMyAdmin) and a great management console that allows you to install extensions with just a click. You can still customize our Apache conf and other things, but it works well out of the box (I’m on a Mac). While you can run it along side another Apache installation, I tweaked it to run on port 80 and handle multiple virtual hosts. While this may not be ideal for all teams, it can allow everyone to have the same environment without having to mess with poorly updated all-in-one dev environments.

One of the reasons this excites me, being on a Mac, is that every time in the past that I’ve updated my Mac OS, the install kills something on my system causing my development environment to go all wonky. Then I have to spend precious work time to fix it. The Zend Server CE install keeps everything nice and tidy and, to my knowledge, doesn’t rely on other stuff outside of the install to function (unless you are setting host entries in your hosts file, /etc/hosts on a Mac).

This, oh so sweet, environment gets a little better. While I still have a variety of development tools at my disposal, my main IDE has become Zend Studio (Eclipse). I know, I know… there are a lot of purists out there that say it’s too heavy, or sluggish, or isn’t simplistic enough. There are occasional bugs or things that annoy me, but at the end of the day it is integrated enough that it lets me get my work done. That’s the whole point of an IDE. It also integrates with Flex Builder plugin which is a plus for me.

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Flash on an iPhone?

April 10th, 2009
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Flash is not supported on the iPhone

Flash is not supported on the iPhone

As many of you know, I love Apple products. Not to the exclusion of the everything else, but I’ve got to hand it to them. They’ve created product lines that, despite the often steep cost, attract users and keep them reeled in with great user experience and phenomenal practicality.

One thing has really been bugging me though… this whole issue about Flash on an iPhone. It doesn’t look like it’s going to happen anytime soon and if it does, it will likely be a trimmed down, “do nothing” version. See the article.

While I love my iPhone and a great part of the internet can be seen on it, it really ticks me off that they are essentially censoring my use of the internet. Not because of content appropriateness or service bandwidth issues and restrictions. They are censoring the internet on my device simply so they can keep a tight grip on the money they get from the App Store and the other paid-for downloadables that they provide. If you’re going to give me the web… give it all to me and let me decide what to view.

Sure I am missing a few fun games and other things from the world of Flash. But I am also missing access to some very important websites and data that I would like to get on my iPhone, including Adobe Flex-based reporting interfaces from work.

Apple, if you’re not going to allow Flash on the iPhone, at least give me a legit technical reason or something. Otherwise, find a way to make it work. It seems ridiculous that the “most advanced” phone device in the world, that does SO much, cannot even offer Flash. Meanwhile, other second-rate devices are, simply because they can. iPhone users pay good money for their phone and service (not to mention all the other Apple products they have also likely latched on to). It’s an insult really, that many of us professionals own these fantastic phones that we use for so many facets of our business and personal lives… but we can’t have Flash because Apple wants to take an even bigger slice of our paychecks.

I’m very curious to see how they handle this issue. I’ve loved Apple because of the flexibility, the power, the beauty of it all. But, this issue seems a bit too Micro$oft for my liking.

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