Where to Find Help

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You can get help and information from a variety of areas.

Documentation

Launch the language reference help from within your editor for language-specific information. I do not recommend using the search capability at http://help.adobe.com directly, as it directs you to the Adobe Support page, which is not specific enough for our purposes.

Type in a class name in the IDE text editor, and then select it. In Flash Professional, click the question mark on the top right. In Flash Builder, press Shift-F2. As shown in Figure 19-1, the information is presented in ASDoc style as HTML frames. The upper left frame lists packages, language elements, and appendixes. The lower left frame lists classes in the package in context. The right frame displays the class you are searching for. The content comprises an introductory paragraph and the list of properties, methods, and events.

Figure 19-1. Language reference help
Figure 19-1. Language reference help

The Internet

Use the Google search engine to find undocumented material starting with “as3” or “AIR”, especially now that you know the syntax of the class or API you are interested in. The Flash community is vibrant and posts solutions and examples, often before Adobe makes them official.

Read blogs for up-to-date information and code snippets. Visit websites for in-depth articles and application examples.

The Community

Post questions on the Adobe forums. This is a good place to ask beginner- to intermediate- level questions and gain access to the Adobe engineering team.

Attend conferences. Many sessions cover the latest in technology. In fact, it is often the arena chosen by software companies to make announcements and give sneak peeks.

Be active. Share your work. If you demonstrate interest and knowledge, you may be invited to be part of the prerelease lists. This will put you in the privileged position of testing and making suggestions on beta products. Be aware of Adobe bugs so that you can find workarounds for them, and if you witness new bugs, report them at http://bugs .adobe.com/.

Find a user group in your area. If one does not exist, create it.