One of the biggeset pain points of FLEX/Flash (as i see it) is its inability to render HTML in its totality. FLEX supports a few HTML Tags, but not all. Another question that people pose to me is… “When are you guys gonna include PDF rendering in Flash ?”.
I hope the answer to that is soon (since its the logical way to go), but here’s a (partial) answer to people’s woes. I call it “FLEX – i – FRAME”. Its an old wine in new bottle, considering the fact that Flash Designers/Developers have been using it since time immemorial.
Thanks to Cristophe, who ported the idea to FLEX1.5 in AS2 (read the post here) and then Brian who gracefully ported the same to AS3 with FLEX 2.0 (read that post here). It has an awesome way of resizing the iFrame when the Flex Application is sized. The great part is, it can make it look like you are rendering HTML and even PDF content inside a Flash/Flex Application.
I took Brian’s iFrame MXML component and made a quick application (in about half hour) to show its capabilities. This application will be a one-stop-shop for all resources pertaining to Adobe India’s “Adobe Developer Olympiad” RIA Challenge. You can choose from a choice of sites/resources and PDFs from inside this application. So here it is
(To view source, right click on the movie once
you click the above link OR click here)
But what kind of surprised me was the amazing perfomance of the History Managemet API. While still within the FLEX Application, you can use the browser back button to navigate to earlier pages… really NEAT !!!