I have been very tough of late on Adobes documentation for its products – CS4 Production Premium Suite downloads with an online help that is just not finished and the tendency is to drive users to the Web “to get the latest documentation”. Some vendor is going to make a mint when they make available an update system to their documentation as robust as their program updates. Having gotten this off my chest, I was surprised to see how good the online documentation is for Flex 3. Below is a screenshot example.
These are the getting started docs for FlexBuilder3 and I have argued that because of the novelty of RIA design, the major changes to MXML and ActionScript 3, plus the weakness of the Flash CS3 (no comment yet on CS4) IDE – Adobe must do a super job of documenting the Flex development process. Well in the Getting Started file, rightup front on the Flex builder 3 Welcome screen, Adobe has delivered.
First the exercises are well graded – not to simple and yet not trivial Hello Worlds. Second, the exercises constantly re-iterate the design philosophy and methods of Flex and link to relevant detailed documentation. third, there is spread throughout the docs OReilly like tips and alerts that are helpful in designing and coding Flex programs. Finally, Adobe go through the step by step process but also allows fast learners to step through more quickly as they see fit. Its literally a Good Start.
My major complaint – this is only available online; so if your connections to the Net are sporadic, slow, or otherwise nearly non-existent, you are SHIP OUT OF LUCK. Otherwise good move.