Flex update

I had a nice discussion with TimothyP I agreed on most of his points that Silverlight is indeed a nice framework (as is XAML as a language,standard,…). This evening I was doing some more Flex development and I noticed that I had forgotten to mention one thing. Maybe ActionScript is weakly typed, but the Flex Builder tool allows you to have code completion as if it was a strongly typed language.

You could compare it to VB.NET as there you also have code completion but are allowed to call functions that aren’t visible. (sometimes handy when you’re dealing with an ActiveX and don’t want to dependent on the version)

I’ll put some screenshots and code in the near future. Now I’m wrestling with a deadline 🙂

BTW Timothy sorry for the many spelling mistakes. I don’t want to lose time with writing stuff and normally correct it when I’ve published it, but seems there’s no way to edit a comment ?


If your monitoring tool get’s out of control this is your lifesaver!!

mailq | tail +2 | awk ‘BEGIN { RS = “” }
# $7=sender, $8=recipient1, $9=recipient2
{ if ($7 == “monitoring@pczone.be” && $9 == “”)
print $1 }
‘ | tr -d ‘*!’ | postsuper -d –

Flex VS Silverlight

These days everybody in the web world is pushing RIA’s. We have the javascript frameworks like Scriptacilous,Dojo,GWT,… , we also have the browser plugin options like Silverlight,Flex,JavaFX. Probably I’m forgetting some here, but these are the ones I’m following.

As I worked with most of them (some more then others) my preference more and more leans to Flex for developing Web applications.


Well there are several reasons but probably one of the biggest reasons is the fact that Adobe has been releasing a lot of there core frameworks opensource. The Flex core is opensource, they recently released BlazeDS a Java framework for communicating in their own binary format with a Flash application.
For now the development platform (Flex Builder) still has to be bought, but if you want you can just use an Ant script to compile it.

Another big reason is the fact that Flash runs on Windows,Mac and Linux. Even the tool Flex Builder runs on those 3 OS’.

The fact that Flex can display a couple of thousand records in a Datagrid without crashing my browser is also nice. Try doing that with javascript (although I’ve seen a demo of a Dojo Datagrid displaying 100.000 records) but in most frameworks it just hangs your browser.

JavaFX is still in a early stage and IMHO is too little to late!

Microsoft offcourse is pushing their new Silverlight. I’ve seen some demo’s went to some workshops. And I have to admit it’s not bad but if you compare it to Flex, well hmm I’m not sure but they sure seem to be far behind. I just tried the tool Deep zoom (this was shown on mix 2008 as showcase for Silverlight 2) and I’m not really impressed. Compare it to this tool that was shown on Javapolis 2007 and you’ll see where I’m heading 🙂
On the other side Microsoft has the benefit that a Silverlight application can be written in the same language from Gui to backend. But I’m not sure if that’s really such a major advantage. If I look at friends and collegeaus they all seem to be doing some animation stuff with Flash for their customers. And most of them do it in Macromedia Flash MX. They also write code in there, the language is called ActionScript and is a real object oriented language. But these guys don’t know to much about building a large scale application. They do know however to write a nice Gui interface. So they can write components that can be used in Flex. So there Adobe also has a big advantage as they pretty much own the Graphics industry 🙂

One thing that most peeple however seem to overlook is the fact that with all these RIA applications the search engines will index much less of your page. If you for example have product catalog made with Flex,Silverlight or with one of the Javascript toolkits I’m not sure that they will be indexed by the spiders. But then again you can workaround this and always generate a Sitemap of your product catalog in plain Html. Hmm I wonder how many companies do that and how much money has been lost by companies who didn’t show up on top in a search engine because of this.
Another thing is that integration using links and parameters also gets a lot more complicated!

As I’m working with Flex at the moment you’ll here some more in the future.

PS I hope the upgrade of wordpress worked. Now I’m on 2.3.3 (currently latest stable release) If more SPAM should appear please notify me ASAP!!

Blog hacked

Thanks pvanhoof for notifying me that my blog got hacked. I performed the XML-RPC upgrade. Bizar thing is that you couldn’t see it on my blog, you had to check the RSS feed to see it. So the planets got the SPAM, my apologies. I deleted the SPAM but I’m not sure if the planets will refetch the data and clear my posts. Some times writing your own software is better than using a well known product 🙂

Subversion issue

Today I lost some time with my local Suversion setup. I kept on getting access denied ???
In the logs I found these errors:

)Error string not specified yet: Can’t open file ‘/raid/public/svnroot/project-name/format’: Permission denied
[Mon Mar 10 12:22:58 2008] [error] [client] Could not fetch resource information. [500, #0]
[Mon Mar 10 12:22:58 2008] [error] [client] Could not open the requested SVN filesystem [500, #13]
[Mon Mar 10 12:22:58 2008] [error] [client] Could not open the requested SVN filesystem [500, #13]

When I checked, the permissions where Okay, www-data was owner of the project-name and all files and subdirs. But still this error. I performed a svnadmin verify and recover as indicated in many posts. But no go 🙁

After some more googling I found the solution. The svnroot dir wasn’t accessible by www-data so changed this as well and now everything works fine. I found this problem many times but the indication to also check your parent directories wasn’t mentioned (off course this is a stupid mistake, but probably more people will forget to check this!). Hopes this helps some people out there!

Vmware copy paste reminder

This post is more for myself (as a reminder) than for others 🙂

I had made a debian 4 image in vmware. I copied the base install and zipped it, when I unpacked it today and ran it, it came to ask me if I wanted to recreate some stuff. I clicked on yes (as I always did) when the Linux came up my network wasn’t working. I checked and my eth0 wasn’t available anymore, so I checked ifconfig and I found a eth1 instead. I could have replaced my eth0 with eth1 in the interfaces file but I wanted to check out why this was.

It seems when you click on the Yes button, you get a new MAC address. What offcourse is logical as you don’t want the same as your other VM. I found some stuff about changing the settings in your vmx file, but found changing the udev rule easer. So I went into /etc/udev/rules.d do a grep eth0 * and you find your old eth0, with the ifconfig find out the new mac address and change it in the rule. Afterwards you do a udevtrigger and off you go.

You have to admit that Linux is just cool 🙂