What’s keeping you from moving to ActionScript 2.0 (or higher)?

A question for Flash developers: Are you using ActionScript 2 exclusively yet? Or have you already moved on to AS 3? Or maybe still happy with good ol’ AS 1.0?

It seems many of us use AS 2.0 code in our own projects, approved but tend to “downlevel” the code we provide for clients, using only AS 1.0 components and code for production work. Not sure why this is, unless it stems from the traditional wisdom of “programming for the lowest common denominator.”

So what are your thoughts? Is it time to completely abandon our 1.0 ways now? I’ve provided a poll here, but feel free to explain your choices in the comments here too. Thanks!


13 thoughts on “What’s keeping you from moving to ActionScript 2.0 (or higher)?”

  1. where I work, the more recent projects are written in AS2, but we have a lot of legacy code done with AS1, including custom components and such. Our biggest app has at least 150,000 lines of code that would be impractical to move to AS2; In AS1 we extended the Array, String, Date and other classes with new methods, this would need to change completely in AS2 since those classes are no longer static. Actually, we still have some working Flash4-style code, that everyone is afraid of since it’s close to unmaintenable.

    We are investigating/playing with AS3. I hope to have some real need for it very soon – an app. where performace will matter.

  2. We use an in-house cms framework developed in AS 1 and Asp. We’re planning to redo it in AS 2.0 but simply haven’t gotten around to it yet: too much work on other projects!

  3. Working only with AS2, but still waiting for using AS3 for client. I already begin to play with some As3 but not for buissness..

  4. I use AS2 as much as possible! However I have to use #included scripts for some things like compiling a set of config settings per swf of a type or start-up scripts. In the 16000 odd lines I’ve written on my current project, about 300 are not in classes 🙂

    Can’t wait to begin the conversion to AS3!

  5. Don’t underestimate the power of the procedural programmer. Here is something to think about. Which one is easier, to lure a OO developer to start working with Flash or to train a proceduralist to start thinking in OO terms and move to AS 2.0 in OO manner?
    We do all our projects in AS 2.0 in OO manner. Yes we do have some legacy code that we need to maintain but if it was 150 000 lines I would definatelly plan for rewriting it otherwise the deadly spiral continues forever. For us it turned out to be easier to train someone to use flash that was OO developer instead of turining the mind of the proceduralist. In fact I think it is a lost battle, if you have writen code for several years in flash in procedural manner and you are above the age of 25 I can bet certain parts of my body that chances are you will forever stay in that domain and way of programming.

  6. Most of my projects I made in AS 1.0 Flash MX!
    Because I never used Flash MX2004, there was no reason to use it.
    But now after getting Studio 8 I will start to code in AS 2.0
    and still practice AS 3.0

  7. AS 2.0 all the way. I’ve unfortunately had a lot of projects I was forced to debug / maintain that were 1.0 and terrible spaghetti code strewn across frames, clips and who knows where else with it impossible to trace things down or even easily search through all code for references to things. I’ll move to AS 3 as soon as it becomes feasable 🙂

    The only time I code AS 1 style is when I’m just throwing together quick files to test out theories. If it needs to become real code, it then gets moved to objects (unfortunately, most of my personal experiments don’t typically qualify as “real” projects, heh).

  8. It depends on scope of the project. I can say based on most of my commercial projects, I’ve only needed AS 1.0. Those I’ve used AS 2.0 on have mostly been games.

  9. Like Senocular says, I’m regrettably still using mostly 1.0 for “work” while I’m using my own personal stuff as a playground for 2.0. I haven’t even started thinking about 3.0.

    I think there’s a lot of truth to what Svetoslav says: while I understand most of the concepts behind OO (or at least, I *think* I do), making all of me switch completely has been…well, it hasn’t happened yet. That’s why I’m trying to use various game ideas as an excuse to dive in and force myself to think and build in a more OO manner. While I appreciated some of the lenience afforded by a procedural, compositional approach, I find that the structure required by OOP helps me be more thoughtful with my code: it helps me really think about my “problem” and all the elements I’ll need to solve it up front, rather than throwing everything in a pot and wondering why it’s crap a day later…

    Flash 4 is the suck: even after Flash 5 had been out for a while, I remember a project that I had to do completely in Flash 4…I was surprised at how much I remembered, less surprised at how much it still sucked…

  10. Well, all that been said above is true, but there are 2 sides to this, on a daily bases I run into simple microsite type projects that were over complicated to sh***, for tiny 3 section site there are dozens of classes, all the content sits in XML, Xpath, you name it … (by the way the site content will never be updated …. ). So its a nightmare to change anything and just figure out what’s going on.
    I think there is something to be said about choosing appropriate level of complexity for your project. I just find a lot of people with serious programming background in other OO languages tend to ignore simple ways of doing things in favor or flexing their programming muscle … for no good reason and its especially annoying in fast paced production environment.

  11. I don’t see this as a side to a story but what you describing is a sheer incompetence. There is no excuse for witting overcomplicated code or not documented code. But it is one thing to call a code hard to extend because you can’t do it and another to be able to defend that and explain why do you think in general OO programming for small projects is an overkill. Maybe my passion to defend OO programming is based on the fact that every project we were faced with had to be extended and then the OO way paid for its initial workload. Maybe because we have been in situations when the procedural code we seen from others had to be trashed because it couldn’t be extended at all .I have seen both well done and documented procedural code and OO code and the worst of both worlds. We do all our projects in OO manner even if they are 3 sections but we had the nerve to develop, accumulate, test and reuse a well documented framework based on design patterns so if someone, understands OO programming has to extend what we did, he can. There will always be people that are afraid they will loose their job because someone can understand their code and be able to take over. Hell , call it a professional courtesy. You have to leave what you want to find after somebody else.
    If you want to reuse your code and I don’t mean copy and paste from a previous project, if you want to know that the code you reuse is tested and you can rely on it, if you want to be able to communicate that code to others, if you want to speed up the process of implementation with every new project and know that you do that without sacrificing quality, please someone explain to me how can you do that in procedural programming for a project that is more then 300 lines of code.

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