Aaron’s daughter learns about project scope

And a little Flash to boot 🙂

Flash sounds like a perfect tool to teach programming. Others I’ve been reading about:


Scratch (scratch is built on Squeak Smalltalk – there are other educational environments/tools built with it as well)

Snake Wrangling for Kids


My roots: LOGO and Commodore BASIC.

Interesting related article at O’Reilly: Why Johnny Can’t Program.

Flash, UI, and football fans check out “Inside the Playbook” at NYTimes

The NYTimes uses Flash to produce analysis of each match-up in the NFL playoffs and a fun game to predict winners.

Here is one example of upcoming game analysis: Inside the Playbook: Philadelphia at Minnesota

Here is the predict the winner game: Inside the Playbook Challenge

And go Eagles!

Open Source Rich Internet Application Framework at CIM: OpenPyro

Check it out: OpenPyro: OpenPyro is a pure AS3 framework for creating RIA’s. Open Pyro draws a lot of inspiration from Flex but aims to be more expressive as well as have a smaller filesize and memory footprint.

Arpit Mathur, one of the most brilliant developers I know and a straight up Flash guru is leading the Open Pyro project. He recently posted about OpenPyro on his personal blog and includes a screencast of him using the framework to develop an app.

Kevin Fitzpatrick another CIM Flash master, and lead developer of another open source project at CIM, LogBook, comments about OpenPyro.

Beyond the Browser

Arpit Mathur, our Flash wiz at CIM, has posted a nifty summary of different approaches being taken to extend the browser’s capabilities to the desktop.

To the list, let me add a few more desktop development platforms, that are network leveraging:

Eclipse RCP


wxWidgets with Python

Firefox, irregardless of Prism, is already a capable sometimes-connected desktop application environment (witness Songbird – an open source project I might dig into, because I am just unhappy with the state of current mp3 players). However, Prism sure does seem interesting and worth keeping an eye on.

And while Arpit did cover the Flash side of things (Air), I love contemplating Flex+Python or Flex+Java approaches. Bruce Eckel’s article in Artima on the subject maps to the way I think. There is a lot of re-use and maintenance problems you solve when you layer an application that way.

An earlier project I worked on was a communications application that utilized a Flash UI hosted in a C# application. It worked intriguingly well.

Flex, Flash, and Comcast Interactive Media’s Fan 4.0 Alpha

The team I belong to at Comcast, Comcast Interactive Media, released an alpha version of our video player, The Fan, this week.

You can give it a try here. If I say so myself, it’s pretty sweet.

While more information is available on its official cimLabs page, including links to give feedback, I’d like to point you towards one of its developers, Arpit Mathur, and his blog entry about it.

This version of The Fan was built with Adobe’s Flex and Arpit has a lot to share about the project. Feel free to leave a comment and tell him what you think.

As Arpit mentions, we’re on the lookout for Flash developers. But there’s more to the CIM story than Flash. In fact, the development stack we use at CIM resembles what Bruce Eckel proposed in a piece called “Hybridizing Java” on Artima a while back. We are looking for experienced Web developers of all stripes to join us. Check out cimLife for more.


Arpit’s post about the new version of the Fan is earning some buzz.

RIApedia: Comcast Launches New Flex Based Video Site

Masable: The Fan – Comcast’s New Flex Video Site

Ryan Stewart: Comcast jumps into Flex 2 for media content

Shelley Powers: Cool Thingie


Aaron Held, my manager at CIM, checks in with more about Flash, Java, and The Fan.


Follow the linkage on Techmeme.