Flash MX 2004 7.2 Update

It’s available now. It was no surprise this time… Because Macromedia started being more open and more close to developers lately. We not only knew Flash 7.2 updater was codenamed Ellipsis, we know that 8ball is the codename of the next Flash version.

Mike Chambers, Developer Relations Product Manager for the Flash Platform (which is a new position), mentions about the attitude change in his must-read article titled What Is the Significance of Ellipsis?.

The update itself is great! It’s free, a bit heavy on the download size, 66.66MB for PC and 73.46MB for Mac, but worth every byte.

Documentation is greatly improved with many more code samples and some chapter rewrites. JSFL File API adds needed file functions (as in DreamWeaver). We now have a ScrollBar component and a Delegate class.

Form or class heavy applications took ages to compile and Flash was a resource hog. This is no longer the case. I had to purchase a 3.2GHz machine couple of months ago after I realized startup time for Flash, and resource issues, were severely affecting my efficiency and productivity. Performance is significantly improved now.

Lots of bugs fixed, some are (seemingly) small but cures common daily nuisances. What more can be said, go download it now!

You might say that this release is what Flash 7.00 should have been in the first place. That line of thought has a point. But I’m more exited about what’s to come.

IMHO, it started with Macromedia eating its own dog food (that is using its own software) and redesigning the macromedia.com site back in early 2003.

Flash MX 2004 (7.00) release was clearly rushed, with even crash bugs left in the software, but it was usable for me nonetheless. Macromedia quickly released the 7.01 updater.

Flash Authoring Team now has a blog, Macromedia is more close to developers with new positions (as Mike Chambers mentions in his article above), and Macromedia is now open more than ever, mentioning beta programs, admitting mistakes, and actually listening to developers. You might even get a response when you submit a feature request or a bug through the famous (former)black-hole wish form. (Please do report bugs so that Macromedia knows about them, also report bugs that bug you even if you think it’s known to Macromedia – every submission will count as a vote to fix that bug).

This Flash 7.2 updater is the result of their passion, commitment and learning from past mistakes (which I value as one of the greatest virtues).

Mike Chambers mentions that they’ve moved an engineer from development team to the documentation team. That’s hell of a great move. (Also note that to get future help updates, you’ll need Flash 7.2 installed).

I can’t wait for 8ball because the Flash development team started making customer visits lately, observing how Flash is used in the real world. With that attitude, 8ball can’t fail.

It seems this is the final update to Flash 7 (aka MX 2004). Why 7.20 and not 7.02, continuing the trend? Well, international releases had a different versioning (which is never a good practice and creates unnecessary confusion), and 7.2 brings all Flash releases to the same version number.

In summary, this is a great update and the ‘attitude change’ with Macromedia only promises more… Thank you Macromedia and all Macromedians!

This entry was posted in Flash.

4 Responses to Flash MX 2004 7.2 Update

  1. Oh, and I forgot to mention LiveDocs…
    http://livedocs.macromedia.com/flash/mx2004/index.html
    Certainly another great move…
    Best regards,
    Burak

  2. Jensa says:

    Nahhh… The LiveDocs is a blind track. At least the way I see them. Take a look at http://livedocs.macromedia.com/coldfusion/6.1/htmldocs/tags-p21.htm#wp1734655 This is the CF6.1 entry. What about the former comments to CFDUMP from the MX and 5.0 version? If commands and examples are erased for every version of a program, they loose their value. Cool tricks need to be passed on and like the entry above says: LiveDocs lack version numbering and a lot more. What we need is one reference per product, with a lot of user examples. The current livedocs is almost more like a public Macromedia bugbase. Have a look at PHP.net. That’s the way to do it…

  3. Thanks for the comment Jens.
    Yes, probably LiveDocs isn’t perfect.
    I’d have assumed that earlier comments made their way into the current docs.
    I think LiveDocs provides the functionality not available, and cannot be available, elsewhere:
    It’s the official place you can add comments to docs (Only Macromedia can have that).
    Macromedia gets feedback on documentation, which IMHO would not be possible otherwise, because people are reluctant to do it unless it’s as easy as in LiveDocs. And documentation is really an important aspect for a product like Flash…
    And we, developers, have a centralized place to look for more info.
    Even when people are logging bugs there, they do it at the appropriate place. Which I think is again very important, because searching for previous bugs, reading all of them and then submitting a new bug is certainly not the easiest thing along with deciding where to log a bug, when you are a beta tester. But with LiveDocs, for every feature, there’s a page, and it’s not that hard to read previous comments.
    I’m not a CF user, and as far as I know, LiveDocs for Flash started with MX2004. If Macromedia doesn’t use the info there to improve docs, and just deletes the comments for the new help or product version, that would be a shame. But I doubt this will be the case.
    So I think LiveDocs is another great move. But I won’t argue if you say there’s room for improvement.
    Best regards,
    Burak

  4. Flash MX 2004 7.2 update

    “Ellipsis” has been released :-) Well worth fetching, the MX 2004 7.2 update improves documentation and fixes tons of issues (in particular resource issues – hooray!). Thanks Macromedia, great work. ——–…