18 Replies Latest reply on Sep 21, 2010 11:27 AM by JaumeMussons

    FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY

    JaumeMussons Level 1

      Can anyone tell me why did they change everything from flex 3 to flex 4???

       

      With the big mess of components that have been created now, there's only confusion and problems. It is and absolute nightmare to migrate a flex 3 application to flex4. Lots of think work different, and are even more complicated!!!!

       

      What have you done with flex adobe???

       

       

      Shame on you!!!

        • 1. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
          David_F57 Level 5

          hi,

           

           

          I don't think anything is more complicated you can still develop exactly the same way you did with FlexBuilder 3, what you do have is advanced text framework, advanced media framework,  advanced skinning, Improved data handling the list goes on. The environment is growing as per what developers wanted, you don't need to move with the changes Flashbuilder introduced,  you can happily stagnate by staying with the flex 'classic' sdk and and bypass everything you seem  to hate about flashbuilder 4. Lets not forget updated Air, pending mobile device development, multi-touch and all those other things we didn't have to think about 3 years ago.

           

          One other thing Flashbuilder will actually save you 15-25% development time for a standard look flex app, time you can use to make the thing look a little more up to date and less like the bland tasteless majority of apps out there done in FB3.

           

          As for migration yesterday I took a large app done in Flex3 beta 2, it took the whole of 5 minutes to clean up a few erroneous errors and compile it in flashbuilder with the 3.5 sdk. That is not killing usability.

           

           

          David.

          • 2. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
            JaumeMussons Level 1

            Shure!

             

            Jus try to disable the "flex 3 compatibility mode" and you will see what i'm talking about when migrating a big app. Of course i can let this option set, but i think i will want to update everything to flex 4 some day, and it will be a HELL

            • 3. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
              rootsounds Level 4

              The Flex 4 SDK sports 2 UI libaries: the legacy library (for backwards compatability) and the new Spark components. It's certainly far from perfect, but works decently enough.

               

              The bottom line is that you don't have to build against the Flex 4 SDK.. At the moment I'm still developing a 3.5 app that was started prior to the final release of 4. No real reason to migrate. The real pain is probably more so in dealing with the included third-party libraries than my own code. However there isn't much of a compelling reason to put forth the effort anyway since the main focus of 4 is on the new Spark UI library and its skinning.

              • 4. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                David_F57 Level 5

                Jus try to disable the "flex 3 compatibility mode" and you will see what i'm talking about when migrating a big app. Of course i can let this option set, but i think i will want to update everything to flex 4 some day, and it will be a HELL

                 

                Wow so FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY is a topic based on zero substance, and future experience...

                 

                What do you regard as a big app,  if its enterprise(its possibly a big app) it wouldn't be in the hands of an individual developer, if its in the hands of an individual developer I doubt its very big at all(and if you are the proud individual owner of a 'large' application you should know it inside and out and version migration should  be no more than an annoying inconvenience).

                 

                Usability has nothing to do with version migration, which for any worthy developer is just another challenge to be lived with no matter what the development environment happens to be.

                 

                David.

                • 5. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                  JaumeMussons Level 1

                  So you consider a normal think having to change ALL the MXML components to the new ones ??

                   

                  And having to deal with lots of different behaviours when changing these components? (diferent layout, different css, different objects....)

                   

                  And getting hundreds of errors when disabling the flex 3 compatibility mode?? So we cannot do the migration step by step

                   

                   

                  I'm talking about a BIG app, made by 5 developers during almost 2 years. Do you understand now what i'm talking about?

                  • 6. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                    David_F57 Level 5

                    Hi,

                     

                    When you have migrated an application that was written over a decade and presented several thousand compiler errors when opened in a new environment or moved an application that was under development for 5 years to a different language, then you may have an understanding of what large scale migration is all about.

                     

                    Look at your original post, just what part of your statement makes any sense, to put it bluntly all you have indicated is your total lack of understanding of the difference between usability and migration.

                     

                    This is software development, you don't make wholesale upgrades to legacy software, you maintain it whilst migrating code into a new environment, if the decision is made to migrate(in many cases this just doesn't happen). If it took 5 developers 2 years to create a flex 3 application, then a couple of developers with reasonable knowledge will migrate it into a Flex 4 branch of development in several weeks, the biggest nightmare is usually for the testers who have to test the entire application from the ground up.

                     

                    Large scale migration is not done overnight, in many cases an application may even be started from scratch to take advantage of changes in technology or simply becuase a wholesale rewrite may be the cheapest option, at the end of the day it usually becomes something controlled by economic constraints not a mid level developers desire to dabble with different buttons classes.

                     

                    Now do I understand, well lets see I took a business management/pos application written from 1995-1998 with delphi 5, it had 680,000 lines of code it was not unicode compatible delphi had 3 major overhauls from delphi 5 to delphi 10 half the components used were no longer available but there was in most cases reasonable equivalents. Vista was also a parallel challenge. The migration took 300 hours as a sole effort the challenges were in most cases insignificant but the complexity is beyond anything you will see in a sudo language like actionscript.

                     

                    So for the most part real developers are happy with the way flex has moved forward,  those that are not hung up on their own importance understand that it may present challenges when it comes to flex 3 legacy apps but something that is not insurmountable or as you claim with no prior experience 'hell'.

                     

                    Your post is something that just irritates me becuase of it complete and utter stupidity.

                     

                    Enough said, i'm getting back to enjoying what this forum is supposed to be about not your tripe.

                     

                    David.

                    • 7. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                      JaumeMussons Level 1

                      I still think that the language evolution could have been done in a way that would not FK UP existing flex 3 applications. JAVA LANGUAGE's been evolving for years without this kind of problems. And we are talking about a completely new application, made only 2 years ago, not 20 years like the applications you say. These kind of migration problems are not normal in a programing language.

                       

                      Take PHP for example. You can still load code that is milions of years old and it still fking works!!!!!!

                       

                       

                      AND!!! -- Do you think we have the budget to afford a 3 weeks migration!?!? For a change in a code that is supposed to be written in the same language my god!!

                      • 8. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                        rtalton Level 4

                        I recommend switching to Java. Then you will certainly never have these issues.

                        Btw, if you need someone to take the FB4 license off your hands, I'll give you $20 $10 for it. Probably more than it's worth, but I'm feeling sorry for you.

                        • 9. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                          JaumeMussons Level 1

                          Don't you understand???

                           

                          I was happy with FLEX!!! I don't want to change to java, FLEX IS BETTER!!!

                           

                          But the language changes from 3 to 4 are a *****! They should almost have provided us with an auto migration tool from 3 to 4, as i think we paid good money for Flash builder!!! And now what ?? Spend more rewritting all apps???

                           

                           

                          ARGGGG

                          • 10. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                            JeffryHouser Level 4

                            If you don't want to, or can't, migrate your app from Flex 3 architecture to Flex 4 architecture, use the multiple SDK feature to set up your preferred SDK (3.5?) and compile your application against that SDK using the new IDE.

                            • 11. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                              UbuntuPenguin Level 4

                              I understand what you mean in respect to there being a learning curve.  But I have to say , once you figure out the Flex Skinning ( and it may take some time ) and the difference between the SkinnableContanier and a Group , it's smooth sailing from there.  The trick is to buckle down and make it happen , I would recommend starting a project from scratch and building against Flex 4 before refactoring Flex 3 project to Flex 4.

                               

                                If the architecture of your Flex 3 app isn't atrocious , it shouldn't be too difficult , seeing how it's mostly components that got changed around and not to much else ( that a developer has to worry about ).  Good luck.

                              1 person found this helpful
                              • 12. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                SpaghettiCoder Level 3

                                Lots of people paid good money for Flash Builder and like the changes...

                                 

                                1. You don't have to port your 3 code to 4

                                2. You can still use 4 to do 3 code

                                • 13. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                  MikisMM Level 2

                                  JaumeMussons wrote:

                                   

                                  I still think that the language evolution could have been done in a way that would not FK UP existing flex 3 applications. JAVA LANGUAGE's been evolving for years without this kind of problems. And we are talking about a completely new application, made only 2 years ago, not 20 years like the applications you say. These kind of migration problems are not normal in a programing language.

                                   

                                  Take PHP for example. You can still load code that is milions of years old and it still fking works!!!!!!

                                   

                                   

                                  AND!!! -- Do you think we have the budget to afford a 3 weeks migration!?!? For a change in a code that is supposed to be written in the same language my god!!

                                  Now about the Java (just to be clear: I like it and i use it). You are righ: Java has been evolving and it maintained backwards compatibility but there has been a great treadoff for that: evolution is extremly slow because of "backwards compatibility" and because of JCP. JDK 7 for example: Sun has started working on it something like 3 years ago and it is still nowere near completion. I've been following mailing lists of lambda and coin projects and have seen how many problems maintaining backwards compatibility is causing.

                                  Why would you even want to migrate your "huge" project to Flex 4? Why would you want to swith off flex 3 support for it? You should not expect everything to work out of the box if you do that. You can still compile your application with Flex 4 SDK with only minor changes to your code.

                                  My advice: use Flex 4 for new projects and stick with Flex 3 when working on the old ones. Flex 3 is still great framework.

                                  As for Flex 4, its a great framework and it has got great features. I must say I found all my knowledge of Flex 3 (and 2) usefull.

                                  • 14. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                    -BoNzO- Level 2

                                    No it didn't.

                                     

                                    You can migrate your code progressively. You can have things like mx:Canvas and s:Group coexist.

                                    • 15. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                      gspirido Level 1

                                      you don't make much sense.. since first of all the very title to your thread has nothing to do with

                                      your problem... FLEX 4 indeed increases usability in ways that FLEX 3 never could.. the problem is your mad it can't convert... Its a programming language.. its the reason its called FLEX 4 and not FLEX 3.6.. its new... sure JAVA maintains backwards compatability with its code, but not many other programs do... you think .NET's compatability is the same as JAVA's? not at all.

                                       

                                      If your upset, don't convert... like others have said stick with FLEX 3 for our program and use FLEX 4 for anything new... There would be very little reason to ABSOLUTELY have to switch to FLEX 4 unless you want to use the new features, and in that case, even with backwards compatability, a rewrite would be required.

                                       

                                      learn a bit about the field your in before losing it over something so trivial.

                                      • 16. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                        JaumeMussons Level 1

                                        So Guys,

                                         

                                         

                                        I must apology for this post. It was mainly motivated by a panic attack. We've been struggling with the migration progress, and while i may say it is far from being complete, it's not been nearly as painful as we supposed.

                                         

                                        The Flex 4 changes have been made in such a way that is possible to progressively move the mxml components from 3 to 4, and the app still works. I may say that some things get broken, but not much important.

                                         

                                        The only thing i'm not happy with is that there are many missing spark components, so you still need to rely on the old halo counterparts... But i've noticed some performance improvement due to the spark arquitecture.

                                         

                                        So in conclusion, I must say i' was wrong. Flex still rocks!

                                         

                                        Sorry for the inconvenience!

                                         

                                         

                                         

                                        PD: I will be posting a small tuto on the migration process on my blog soon,

                                         

                                        http://jaumemussons.wordpress.com

                                        • 17. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                          vijayudu1 Level 1

                                          Hi JaumeMussons,

                                           

                                          JaumeMussons wrote:

                                           

                                          PD: I will be posting a small tuto on the migration process on my blog soon,

                                           

                                          http://jaumemussons.wordpress.com

                                           

                                          Hope your migration went well (I know the pain of migrating the flex app from ver 3 to 4, I am doing it now). I am facing lot of issues. I am hoping that your small tutorial will help me in migrating my app. Please point me to its location. Thanks in advance.

                                          • 18. Re: FLEX 4 KILLED ALL USABILITY
                                            JaumeMussons Level 1

                                            Hi!

                                             

                                             

                                            The tuto's been on my blog for a while but i changed it's location and it is not on the wordpress site anymore.

                                             

                                            you can find it here:

                                             

                                            http://jaumemussons.edertone.com/2010/08/31/migrate-from-flex-3-to-flex-4-how-to-do-it-wit hout-burning-in-hell/

                                             

                                            Hope you find it usefull!