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Flash Builder 4.5 What's New

FlashR BuilderR 4.5 has some new enhancements for mobile/multi-screen projects and for the two-way workflow with Flash Catalyst 5.5. To get up and running quickly on your web, desktop, Android, iOS or Blackberry project, check out the tutorial links on the Start Page.

The first new feature that you will like is the mobile project options in the New Project menu for a FlexR, ActionScript or Flash CatalystR Compatible project. With the Flex mobile option you will use the Flex framework to build your project and with this latest release, the Flex Mobile AIR project supports the Google Android platform. You have the choice of a blank, view-based or tabbed application template. You also have your choice of application settings including reorientation support, full screen mode or auto scaling.

With the new ActionScript Mobile AIR project you will build the project with ActionScript code. You can build both an Apple iOS or a Google Android project in ActionScript. For an iOS platform you can set the target device as iPad, iPhone/iPod or both. Here you also have the reorientation and full screen mode options.

If you want to work on your project in both Flash Builder and Flash Catalyst, you will enjoy the new menu option for a Flash Catalyst Compatible Flex project. With this new option you can move between programs without the need to save the FXP files. If you have both software installed, you can easily open and move between workspaces with the menu options for editing in Flash Catalyst and Resume Working in Flash Builder. When moving from Builder to Catalyst, Builder has a new Flash Catalyst compatibility checker the alerts you of any issues before you leave Builder. If you add components to your project while in Flash Catalyst, you will see that the corresponding code for the new components is automatically generated when you move back to Flash Builder.

In the Flash Builder Preferences dialog box you will see many new code templates divided into four types - ActionScript, CSS, Flash Builder and MXML. These include code snippets for many frequently used code blocks such as functions and event handlers. Other helpful coding features are the Code Assist, Code completion and Content Assist which suggest and generate code for the most used classes for specific skin states etc.

Another nice feature is the ability to debug your project from within the Builder workspace. If there are any errors in your code, Builder will display an alert icon in the left column next to the problem code. You can then use Quick Assists to correct the errors. For those working with PHP, you will be glad to hear that Flash Builder 4.5 fully supports Flex and PHP.

*Adobe provided a review copy to me free of charge.

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