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OK, the deeper i look into this the more frustrated and overwhelmed i feel. On one hand flex allows me as a designer actually built complex applications pretty fast and easy, on the other hand i feel neutered artistically as it seems to take an almost perverse knowledge of ActionScript and the Flex framework to skin the applications. I feel like this is basically an equal trade off, if i was to build some nutty app using HTML and AJAX i would spend 85% of the time overcoming programmatic hurtles where as if i build it in flex I am spending 85% of the time trying to hack the planet just to get my design to look remotely like i want it, and since when it comes to the final product it has to look like what our clients expect I end up abandoning flex for html and script.aculo.us as i can at least decide what it will look like. On this forum I asked how i could actually have a gradient in a container almost 4 months ago and still no answer, I found on mossyblog a hack around this but that just seems nuts, If you pay for flexbuilder you should be able to "build" it in the "builder", not have to break down into the source, hacking the panel component creating your own css file just to have a gradient in a container, I mean am I the only one that thinks that is nuts? How come inline properties are overridden or not allowed when they are the inline properties, seems the inline properties should override everything else, right? wtf?
I read Peter Ents blog on skinning and Adobe labs page and the info in the docs and its never explained in a way that makes any sense to ME or appears to be a viable solution for quick designing. I'm not a developer so i guess I should not expect to be able to whip out designs but Flex is marketed in manner that suggests it will allow you to overcome those hurdles that make RIA hard for designers and developers alike, I just don't see how the overly complex method of designing in this environment is easy, simple, or fast.
Can someone please point why and how I'm wrong about this, I really want to use flex as a solution but I keep getting to the same point of wanting something besides that halo theme and nowhere to look, read or divine a way to actually change the non-raster portions of a theme, like the linkButton. Im not saying its hard to make a complex application, im saying its hard to make the application look how you want, and that sucks :(
Man, I feel your pain, and cannot argue. But what you said is true, it is a tradeoff.
Have you discovered the yahoo groups "flexcoders"? If not, check it out, there are some serious brainiacs hanging out there. Search the archives before you post though.