Flex RIA Articles – Part 1 (Front to Back Development)

4 November, 2006

Front to Back Development

After receiving my first SRS document of the scope I quickly proceeded into knocking up some quick prototypes in flex of my initial sketches. Although not functional these prototypes were able to give the others guys on the team some insight on liquid UI’s in Flex.

This was received very well and I next moved on to creating a proper design document. This was not a technical document and specifically focused on the complete functionality of the application.
By my 3rd draft of this document I quickly realised what a large project this really is 🙂

In the 4th draft I had applied styling to all of the screenshots in the doc and finally became impressed with looking at what my final achievement will resemble. This is quite a nice application if I do say so myself and I have definitely set a high standard for output.

At this point I would like to make note of an article posted on devnet by the guys from Cynergy Systems. This explains a methodology that from experience is optimal for RIA development.

It is common in standard web application development that the user interface simply gives the user the ability to make use of a back-end application. In Flash RIA development that paradigm shifted to a more user centred focus in the application design with all the interaction possibilities provided by developing with Flash.
But this was by no means optimal. Flash is not a rapid application development platform and Adobe has gone to great lengths to achieve this with Flex. Flex offers the ability to create functional prototypes of applications quickly, something that Flash did not.
This opens the door for the front to back development process. This means that the Front end GUI’s can be signed off on before work on creating the exposed back-end services takes place. This is a beautiful concept for a front end developer and helps us avoid some of the pitfalls I experienced in my previous project, particularly massage and manipulation of data returned from service calls.
With using AMF3 and its complex typed object handling I can specify in my prototypes how I wish the objects to be returned from the service therefore minimising any conversion of data returned from the service, YAY!

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One Response to “Flex RIA Articles – Part 1 (Front to Back Development)”


  1. Hello,
    We are searching people can work with Ajax, Adobe Flex because we have work to be done.
    Please help me.
    Send to me some persons that really know how to work with flex.
    Miguel


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