Flex, Firefox plug-in + community.

Following on from my recent post on creating a specific flex search using Google I wanted to make it easier to flick between the main Google search and the flex collection Google search.
Well I’ve created an OpenSearch plugin (supported by Firefox 2+, Internet Explorer 7+, etc) so I can now easily flick to a specifc flex search whenever I wish now.

 

google search

 

To use search plugin click here.

Community

I’d like it to contain as many helpful flex, AIR and flash sites as possible. I’m talking about sites that actually give you code hints, tips and samples without tonnes of text that get them up the page rankings without actually being of any real use.

Hopefully you’ll all like the search and find it useful.  I’d love it if this flex/AS/AIR search could be as comprehensive as possible.  It would help me (and others) when looking for appropriate information. (I know there are various aggregators out there but the search facilities on these sites aren’t normally great, but Google’s is — so go on, help me add to the list to make it better for everyone 🙂 )

Current List

http://blog.everythingflex.com/
http://dougmccune.com/
http://flexbox.mrinalwadhwa.com/
http://onflash.org/ted/
http://www.mikechambers.com/
http://www.scalenine.com/
http://dougmccune.com/
http://www.darronschall.com/
http://algorithmist.wordpress.com/
http://www.moock.org/blog/
http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/communityengine/index.cfm?event=homepage&productId=2
http://actionscriptexamples.com/
http://blogs.adobe.com/air/
http://blogs.adobe.com/flex/
http://www.degrafa.org/
http://flexbox.mrinalwadhwa.com/
http://www.webkitchen.be/
http://blog.flexexamples.com/
http://www.kennethsutherland.com/
http://www.gskinner.com/blog/
http://www.gotoandlearn.com/
http://polygeek.com/

 

If there are any links that you particularly like then leave a message with the link.  If it’s got some good examples etc then I’ll add it to the list.

Cheers.

Additional sites:

http://www.insideria.com/
http://userflex.wordpress.com/
http://www.riaforge.org/
http://www.quietlyscheming.com/

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Flex Collection – Google search

Totally off topic this. But I had quite a bit of hassle trying to find info on how to do what I just did.

So if you look to your right you’ll see a nice search box with the Google brand inside it 🙂 Nothing special there you may think… well.

Well it’s a custom search box from Google, and I’ve customised it by adding all of my favourite and preferred flex, AIR, and flash sites. So should you need to search on anything related to the mentioned categories just use the search box to the right.

 

How its done

If you are interested in adding something similar to your blog or web page then there is very little information out there about Google’s custom search page. 

There seems to be 2 ways to add it to wordpress.

1)       Add it as a page within your site so that it retains your sites look and feel, in order to do this you can find a plugin for custom google search and depending on what theme you have have this may or may not work. I tried out http://aleembawany.com/projects/wordpress/google-custom-search-plugin/ which as it happens didn’t work with my theme.  But I wasn’t really trying to get it to work inside my site, I wanted the custom search to retain the Google style as that is what people are used to when using Google.

2)      Add it as a hosted Google custom search. Now on this method I found absolutely zero information (actually the info I did find on the wordpress site said it wasn’t possible).  Not to be put off by this info as anything seems to be possible with wordpress (I’m just learning it really, my blog is only a few weeks old), I decided to hunt through the various php files etc that come with wordpress.

The file that is required is searchform.php and this can be found inside the theme folder that you are using ( something like ‘wp-content/themes/{your theme folder}/searchform.php’)

Open up the file and inside that you should find some php and some html code (a form).  Replace the html code with the code that Google has given you for your custom search.  Or if you would like to have a search that just does Flex, AIR and flash sites then feel free just to use the following code.

 

<form action="http://www.google.com/cse" id="cse-search-box">
  <div>
    <input type="hidden" name="cx" value="partner-pub-7396620608505330:xjbbr6-w0cu" />
    <input type="hidden" name="ie" value="ISO-8859-1" />
    <input type="text" name="q" size="23" />
    <input type="submit" name="sa" value="Search" />
 
  </div>
</form>
<script src="http://www.google.com/coop/cse/brand?form=cse-search-box&amp;lang=en" 
type="text/javascript">
</script>

When the user searches in this form then it will look up just a list of sites that only contain information on Flex, AIR, actionscript & flash.

You can also bookmark the following link

http://www.google.com/cse?cx=partner-pub-7396620608505330:xjbbr6-w0cu&ie=ISO-8859-1

This will link up to the specific Google search that I’ve set up just to look at relevant Flex, AS3, AIR & Flash sites.

 

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Zooming Example

Ages ago I worked on an accessibility tool that followed the mouse around the stage and magnified whatever the mouse was over. It never made it to the final stages of completion but after reading a question on flexcoders for a zooming tool, I thought I’d revisit the idea and create a simple magnification/zoom example.

Before

During

After

 

Right click the example for source code.

This isn’t for production, just a POC on how to do enlarging, enjoy.

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