I've experimented a bit with the data services feature that Flash builder 4 beta 2 offers. Frankly they seem to be just about what I was waiting for. We build a lot of data centric applications and anything that reduces the amount of code required to wire things up is great. I do have some questions re the data services as implmented in beta 2, and forward. Note I've almost no hands on with Flex, any version, at this point.
With Flex Builder 3, there was a crud wizard. From what I read the code it generated was not considered production grade. I hope that the data services feature shown with beta 2 would be considered robust enough to use in production? I am sure that there are many different ways of handling data services in general with Flex, so I am not asking if it's the best approach or makes any other approach redundant. I just mean, could the tooling around the data services feature of flash builder 4 remain a viable approach for getting at data, once a flex developer was past the training wheels stage?
Another aspect I'm curious about is whether the data services features of Flash Builder 4 would remain relevant if one was using some other data access system? I can't really phrase this question properly because I don't really understand Flex or the various data access technologies that everyone is using. Hopefully the quesiton makes sense...if one was NOT using the data services wizard or whatever it's called, would whatever data services one was using show in the data services area of builder? It would be cool of course if they did.
When it comes to runtime performance of the applications created using Data Centric Development ( DCD ) wizards, they perform same as the ones created without using DCD.
Even the code generated by these wizards are easy to read & maintain with proper inheritance, packages & overriding. But, if you are planning to use any of the MVC style frameworks, the generated code may not fit so well right now. We are already working on improving the experience for people who are using these frameworks.
Overall, using DCD gives a lot of productivity gain with its unified wizards & advanced UI Authoring workflows including Automatic Form Generation, Charts, Master-Detail views, Paging, Client Side Data Management etc.
Please let us know if you have any specific concerns in the generated code.