jQuery support in Dreamweaver CC

jQuery is one of the most used JavaScript libraries out there and the latest version of Dreamweaver, called Dreamweaver CC has enhanced its support of the library. You can see a demo video of the new features here. Not only have they added support for jQuery UI Widget (Dialogs, Accordions, Menu, etc...), but it also adds support for jQuery Mobile, so that you can quickly built HTML5 application that will run on a variety of devices. You can learn more about Dreamweaver CC here.


CVS interaction in Intellij could be better

I've been using Intellij at the office for the pass few months and it does have certain features that set it apart from Eclipse. The differences are not much, but I do appreciate them, with the most notable one being how it works with properties/branding files; the fact that it tells you which properties are no longer in use is great to easily perform some clean-up.

But enough about the good stuff, onto my complaint :) One thing that I think needs improvement in Intellij is how it works with repositories. Viewing incoming and outgoing changes is not as easy as it could be. Outgoing changes is not so bad, you have the "Changes" panel that shows you what needs to be committed, and to view incoming changes you need to go thru the "CVS > Check Directory Status" menu. I would prefer a single view to see both at the same time. Finally once you see all the files, you have to select each one and do CTRL+D on the keyboard to view the changes. This seems unnecessary and should be more easily available.

And I'd like to note that we use CVS at the office and not the latest and greatest Git repository system, so not sure if that plays any role or not. I just find that in Eclipse this is easy, you select "Team > Synchronize" and voila! You have one view showing you all the outgoing/incoming changes and you can easily commit outgoing changes and accept incoming changes and finally deal with any conflicts if that is necessary.


Flex had great documentation

These days I do a lot of HTML5 programming and on the server-side the technology I mostly use is the Spring Framework. Using the Spring Framework I often have questions or need to look up answers to specific hurdles I might encounter as I code and I typically turn to the online documentation. Unfortunately I have found that the online Spring documentation is not the best. Often the sections of the documentation describing a specific feature are brief or provide no concrete example. For such a widely used framework, this is disappointing. I thus often find myself simply googling my question and finding the answer that I need in that manner.

This reminded me of course of the good old days of Flex development where I would go directly to the online documentation and find what I needed right then and there. The documentation was complete, it had a great amount of detail on each and every feature of the framework and had great examples for each component thus making it easy to understand how things work or how to get started creating an application.


New Apache Flex web site

Now that Flex is a top level project at Apache, the enterprise level framework get a nice shiny new web site. Great looking web site, easy to navigate, with access to lots of documentation and links to the rest of the community. So if you are just starting with Flex or been a user for many years already, go check it out!


A little inspiration from a fellow Greek

Just ran across this short video which is basically an interview with Less Rain founder Vasillios Alexiou a fellow Greek ... enjoy :)

Flex lives!

We haven't heard much Flex news lately but as of this month Apache took Flex out of incubation and made it a top-level project! Apache Flex now has also reached version 4.9 and contains the following changes:
  • New localizations for Australian, British, Canadian, Greek, Switzerland (German) and Portuguese
  • The SDK natively supports the Flash Player versions 10.2 through 11.5. Previous versions were locked to a single version.
  • Better support for Vectors, including new VectorList and VectorCollection classes.
  • Inclusion of the new PostalCodeFormatter and PostalCodeValidator components for more consistent internationalization.
  • The TLF (Text Frame Framework) was updated to version 3.0.33, and is now baked in the SDK. No need to download it separately.
  • Support for Java 7 for compiling the SDK.
Also Spark versions of the following components are coming in a future version: Alert, ColorPicker, HDividerGroup, VDividerGroup, Menu, MenuBar, and ProgressBar.

Turn OFF register_globals in PHP

Having now used two different hosting companies for PHP web site hosting, I would like to quick describe the configuration issue that have occured with both hosting companies. They both set PHP's register_globals configuration variable to On, which can have undesirable effects on your application and make you easily second guess why your application is behaving in a certain way.

When register_globals is set to On, this means that your variables are registered globally and available on every page. So if you declare a variable called $userCount and assign it some value in a page called script1.php and then have another variable with the same name ($userCount) but with a different meaning on another page (say script2.php), it will initially take the value assigned when script1.php was executed!

So let's say script1.php performed the following assignment:

$userCount = 5;

When script2.php executes, if it also has a variable called $userCount, its initial value will be 5! Very confusing!

So take my advice, if you can configure PHP yourself on your web hosting site, then set register_globals to Off, or ask your web hosting company to do this for you. 

Also note that the register_globals configuration variable has been removed as of PHP version 5.4.