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Advanced ActionScript 3 with Design Patterns Paperback – November 12, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-0321426567 ISBN-10: 0321426568 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Adobe Press; 1 edition (November 12, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321426568
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321426567
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #576,903 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Joey Lott works with ActionScript during the day and by night he's a super-secret international man of mystery, rescuing animals and children from harms way, righting wrongs, and working for global peace, the rights of all living beings, and environmental responsibility. Joey is the author (or co-author) of a veritable arsenal of ActionScript and Flash-related titles, including the ActionScript Cookbook, Programming Flash Communication Server, and the Flash 8 Cookbook. In his free time he likes to write poetry, pursue competitive origami, and train in the art of aikido. Danny Patterson is a Consultant specializing in Flash and Web technologies. He also works with Schematic as a Senior Flash Architect. He is an Adobe Community Expert and has contributed over 40 articles to Community MX and the MX Developers Journal. He is also the co-author of the Flash 8 ActionScript: Training from the Source book by Adobe Press. He has spoken at many conferences and user groups including Flash in the Can and Flash Belt. Danny is certified in both Flash and ColdFusion and has worked on web projects for many large companies including Microsoft, IBM, Dell, Adobe and Starz. You can check out his blog at

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Customer Reviews

I have only a couple of minor cavils about the book.
George D. Girton
They round out the book with a few advanced ActionScript topics such as events, sending and loading data, E4X and regular expressions.
Diane Cipollo
If you are familiar with Object Oriented programming, this book will show you how to implement design patterns in Actionscript 3.
Rian D. Fowler

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 34 people found the following review helpful By George D. Girton on March 19, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The design patterns movement, the beginnings of which can be traced to Gamma, Helm, Johnson and Vlissides famous Design Patterns book, has informed and changed software development, and spawned a raft of books and study groups.

That's right, people actually get together, read these books one chapter at a time, and talk about software design patterns - for fun! (I admit to being one of them). So, Joey Lott and Danny Patterson are taking on a real challenge in writing a book on this topic, and the term "advanced" in the title is well-advised.

The first chapter is not about patterns but pretty basic object oriented stuff: inheritance vs. composition, polymorphism, code conventions, design first then write unit tests first. These topics are standard fare for a book of this type, and the chapter is blessedly succinct.

The second chapter is on programming to interfaces, a fundamental idea of great importance. Lott and Patterson give one of the clearest explanations I have read of the advantages, and give a convincing argument for always programming to interfaces even when you are using inheritance. Dude! Actionscript3 has interfaces!

Then you get the chapters on patterns: Model/View/Controller, Singleton, Factory/Template, Proxy, Iterator, Composite, Decorator, Command, Memento, and State. I guarantee that after you have read these chapters and studied the code, you will understand these patterns a lot better than before, and will have ideas on how to use them.

The book is rounded out with entire chapters on Events (everything you always wanted to know but were afraid you wouldn't understand why), sending and loading data, E4X, and RegEx.

I have only a couple of minor cavils about the book.
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69 of 87 people found the following review helpful By Tell-It-Like-It-Is on December 27, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is a book that I would classify as a "should have" for any Flash/Flex developer that uses ActionScript 3 and for whom OOD/OOP is important. If you could care less about incorporating OOD/OOP into your web applications, then you can pass on this one.

There is, in my opinion, a major shortcoming in this book. In presenting the MVC (Model, View, Controller), the "View" classes are presented as classes that extend the Sprite class, in which the author draws the objects via ActionScript. Unfortunately, the author seems to ignore the fact that most developers, who employ Flex to build their web apps, will use MXML to layout the view. In such cases, there are no examples of how the author would design the view and controller classes so as to follow a proper MVC design pattern. The same would be true for Flash developers as most are not going to draw the entire screen of their web apps via ActionScript. As a consequence, I feel that most people who read this book will not successfully implement these design patterns into their Flex web apps unless they have prior OOD/OOP experience. In either case (with or without OOD/OOP experience), only the most determined web developers will be able to translate the design patterns of this book in a meaningful way within their applications. This above-mentioned shortcoming is carried throughout the book.

While I realize the title of the book is "Advanced ActionScript 3...", and the argument can be made that the content was only meant to address pure ActionScript 3 concepts, it still ignores the fact that most developers will not develop their web applications with "only" ActionScript 3 and absent any MXML document to define their screen layout. As such, this becomes all but useless in promoting the increase use of the design patterns being presented.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By HeeBee Jack on July 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book presents may interesting design approaches for OOP programming.

Two pitfalls - too many typos (including throughout the code excerpts), and not enough examples. The novice or intermediate programmer may not be able to debug the code printed in the book.

Otherwise, this book is good for programmers looking for more flexibility and fresh approaches for their code.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Phillip Kerman on June 5, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I realize the book title (and the focus and organization) is about design patterns, but I thought it was worth adding the fact that--for me at least--it's the one book I keep coming back to for great lucent coverage of really key AS3 concepts including event dispatching (and using IEventDispatcher instead). I mean, Colin's Essential AS3 is one to turn to for definitive answers on sub-atomic (and important) details... but I still keep coming back to Danny and Joey's book because it's so direct and to the point. To really learn a subject you need more than a book--but to go back over things... to get a good skeleton starter script (which doesn't have extra baggage)... and for brief clear explanations, this book really does it. It's by no means a dated book either. I just think some people might pass over this book because the title makes it sound like it just covers design patterns when, in fact, it's just a great AS3 book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Alonzo Hosford on June 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
This is well written. It appeals to more than one need. If I could I would down grade the rating to 3 stars after I got deeper into doing examples and dealing with the and incorrect and missing files at the download site. See details below.

For those who are Actionscript OO programmers that want to get into the Design Patterns the first two chapters will lead you there quickly. However you will want to read them again after experimenting with the design patters presented in chapters 3 - 12. At least a lot more clicked for me doing it that way. I actually compiled all the examples for the many chapters I read (and hand typed some for experience) using the mxmlc compiler. So you can do these without Flash CS3 if you must.

The design patterns presented in chapters 3-12 all have very useful Actionscript examples using AS3. So you can apply the examples to your projects. As well you will see how new functionality of AS3 is applied. For example it uses regular expressions in the decorator pattern FileReader example.

The final section of the book Chapter 13-16 show new important changes to using Actionscript 3 th at you need to unlearn from AS2 such as Events, Data Communications, the new EX4 for XML and regular expressions.

Digital files unfortunately at author's site are not perfect. Also I found a few minor typos such as DecoratorExample2 as the constructor to the DecoratorExample class. As well as incorrect files where the Decorator FileReader example files were repeated for the Decorator Example Shapes.

There are also a few code typos in the text. Minor but still. Such as page 121 the class should import and extend AbstractReaderDecorator but the code was printed as ReaderDecorator. Another example is page 147.
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