Monthly Archives: March 2005

Relative Paths in JSFL

So I cracked open JSFL and the first problem was finding the current path. I searched the JSFL documentation, searched online, IM’ed Guy Watson, no answers, NADA. Here how to do it, it is really difficult!&

Path names in JSFL use the file:/// style format. To open a file named “example.fla” relative to the executing JSFL script, you simply say:

fl.openDocument( ‘file:///example.fla’ );

Simple ehh, that magic took at an hour to figure out.

There are some killer things you can do with JSFL.

//open a file named example
fl.openDocument( ‘file:///example.fla’ );

//insert the V2 button components
fl.componentsPanel.addItemToDocument({x:0, y:0}, “UI Components”, “Button”);

//delete the instance added to the stage

Just remember when you want to use files in a relative path to the JSFL script, just use file:/// and you are working in the same path as the JSFL script.



Flash Plug-in Switcher

I am always up for great freeware tools that make Flash development easier. This one is excellent.&

Flash Plug-in Switcher manages the Flash plugins in the Browser, Standalone Player, and the Flash IDE. It makes it easy to swap out the Flash Player 7,0,19,0 for player 6,0,79,0 in both IE and FireFox or switching the mapping to the standalone player or the IDE. It makes Flash compatibility testing very simple.

Don’t worry the software is in English.😉

Special thanks to Owen van Dijk for recommending this little tool. Its handy!



COLA Released

COLA or “Central Open Licensing Architecture” was released today at I had the pleasure of developing COLA with Macromedia over the past 2 months. COLA provides server based licensing to Central applications.&


Although I could repeat aspects of the above article, I would rather show you a working COLA application and COLA licensing in action. As I have found, there is nothing like a great example.


I used COLA PHP to make this work. The PHP version uses URL Rewriting to provide a majority of its functionality. URL Rewriting makes COLA licensing seamless, although this typically limits you to using Apache and Unix, but that is a good problem in my book.😉

What are you waiting for? Go make a killer Central application with COLA and actually get paid for your hard work and effort!


Ted Patrick

Basecamp Review

About 3 months ago, I tried out Basecamp by 37signals. It has changed the way I do business and work with clients and projects in general. Basecamp is project management with blog simplicity.&

Basecamp –

When Basecamp was released I thought it would fit the way I work on projects and assist me with project management. I had no idea it would affect my business the way it has. I have never been the best at project organization, but having one central location for clients and projects has made things simple. Every version release, every proposed change, every specification, all documentation, and notes about a project resided in Basecamp. Plus providing external users access, has really empowered my clients to contribute directly to a project.

So what does Basecamp do? Basecamp is an extranet where you create and manage projects. A project consists of Messages, To-Dos, Milestones, Files, and People. It takes all of 5 minutes to create a new project (with users) and adding project items is a snap. When you post files, they are ftp’d to a folder on your server and organized by project. Whenever you make a post to a Basecamp project you can select a set of people you want to know about it and they receive an emailed version of the posting. These messages keep users informed about the project and provide the right balance of simplicity while obtaining invaluable feedback.

I recently completed a project with Macromedia due to ship shortly called COLA. COLA used Basecamp to manage the development process start to finish. The project started with 2 users and now hosts 11 users. The project site serves a nice history of the project with notes on changes, major decisions, code snippets, and full releases. The most useful feature is comments, as any file or message supports comments by users. Since comments are archived by message they are easy to review and work into a project.

Having a common place to manage projects and clients is invaluable. When I land a new client or project, I can have a project site up and running in 5 minutes to capture the essence of project notes and thoughts. If you ever wanted to impress a client, sending them a Basecamp login on the first day of a new project.

Give Basecamp a try, you will be surprised how it changes your projects.