Haxe: working with JavaScript libraries

Posted in haxe, Javascript on November 12th, 2014 by Philippe – 1 Comment

Let’s say you’re interested in using Haxe for JavaScript development, but you are wondering how you are going to use the libraries you are used to.

Clearly this will be a little bit more complicated than when using languages like TypeScript, ES6/Traceur or CoffeeScript which essentially allow you to include any regular JavaScript without the compiler complaining.

Haxe is a different beast: you can’t just drop JavaScript code and expect it to be accepted. Let’s see the different strategies to use external JavaScript from Haxe.

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Vanilla Haxe JS

Posted in haxe, Javascript on November 1st, 2014 by Philippe – 5 Comments

I’ve seen it all in JavaScript, from Netscape 4’s years of pain, to jQuery to abstract browser differences, and finally to Vanilla JS and node.js – we now live in a world where coding in JavaScript is relatively sane and consistent.

Except we still have to use JavaScript. Not that I don’t like JavaScript – I’m quite found of the language and have sympathy for its quirks, but it’s just missing something to be productive once your code becomes more that half a dozen of classes.

Here comes the Haxe language and it’s almighty type inference!

haxe-inference 
Enjoy smart Haxe completion in many popular editors

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Y U NO Haxe? Misconceptions!

Posted in haxe, Javascript on October 30th, 2014 by Philippe – 2 Comments

I have seen the light and I believe that Haxe awesome – why don’t you want to use it?

Alright, you probably heard about Haxe (some people are annoyingly fanatic), maybe even used it at some point in the past (it probably sucked).

But you don’t know Haxe – it has changed, you have changed, let’s talk.

tl;dr: Haxe is a better JavaScript

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Type annotations for the CreateJS Toolkit

Posted in Dart, haxe, Javascript, Typescript on May 19th, 2013 by Philippe – 13 Comments

imageDo you really know CreateJS?

Many people have heard about it, but I often find out that they don’t really know what CreateJS is, what it can do, and why it can really help developing expressive websites in HTML5 today.

Believe me, it’s a topic worth digging!

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Adventures in Dart land

Posted in Dart, Javascript on May 8th, 2013 by Philippe – 8 Comments

The Dart language was unveiled by Google less than 2 years ago as a new “language for the web”, and, like most people, I didn’t give a f… much attention as it was in its early stages and I couldn’t really put my finger on what it was trying to solve, and for whom.

After coding Dart during several weeks (on this cool project) I can pretend to be familiar enough with the language and tools to tell you a bit about it. You’ll be surprised, for Dart isn’t what you think it is.

Did I like it? Yes, I genuinely enjoyed working with Dart.

Should you learn it? Give it a look – you might like it, and learning new languages make you a better coder anyway.

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What should Adobe do to save AIR?

Posted in AS3, haxe, nme on February 15th, 2013 by Philippe – 20 Comments

ASNext was supposed to solve once and for all AS3 VM performance problems.
ASNext is now canceled, but the problem remains.

Why and how slow is AS3?

We know AS3′s VM and JIT aren’t very efficient in general, partly because the language is fairly rich and dynamic; and even if the VM was awesome, all maths are computed with double numeric types which are known to be massively slower than floats.

However compared to other scripting languages, we shouldn’t complain that it’s slow – AS3 AOT-ed on iOS is definitely much faster than interpreted LUA for instance, so why is that such a problem in AIR and not in Corona/MOAI/Gideros?
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CSS, LESS, SASS, HSS support in FlashDevelop

Posted in FlashDevelop on August 2nd, 2012 by Philippe – 10 Comments

image

Finally, FlashDevelop 4.1 (development build at the time of writing) includes first class CSS (and compiled CSS) support.

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NME – profiling your app performance

Posted in haxe, nme on June 5th, 2012 by Philippe – 3 Comments

Profilers are some of the most important tools to optimize an application – yet many developers don’t even know such a thing exists.

There are profilers for most runtimes, that is you’ll get a different profiler for C++, .NET, Java and even Actionscript. For instance we’re using JetBrain’s dotTrace to profile FlashDevelop (a .NET application), and for Actionscript you’ll have the fantastic Adobe Scout.

Haxe NME, for desktop/mobile targets, cross-compiles your haxe code into C++ and builds a pure native application, so we’ll use a C++ profiler.

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Titanium: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Posted in Javascript on January 5th, 2012 by Philippe – 9 Comments

I’ve been following Appcelerator Titanium Mobile with a keen interest since they decided, for mobile, to move from HTML to native UIs. I just love this idea: use the platform’s native UI controls from Javascript. I did have a fairly good experience doing a little test app with Titanium Mobile 1.5 and noted for myself to use it for real when I’ll have a project.

More recently Appcelerator bought Aptana, the arguably most advanced Eclipse plugin for Javascript (and HTML) development, and renamed it TitaniumStudio. Honestly I dislike Eclipse very much but I thought it was a great move to gain the professional developers’ hearts.

Since I had a new occasion to do a mobile app I thought I was time to get up to date by giving Titanium 1.8 another run.

This was a “mixed” experience, but my conclusion is quite positive!

Updated 27/02/12 (see end of the article)

Warning: MacOS stuff ahead ;)

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NME: ready for the show!

Posted in AS3, haxe, nme on November 18th, 2011 by Philippe – 7 Comments

NME is an impressive crossplatform technology particularly appropriate for 2D games development. And by crossplatform that mean:

  • Windows/Mac/Linux and iOS/Android/webOS – at full, native, C++/OpenGl speed,
  • and Flash so you can also compile it for the browser.

Activity & contributions around the NME project has increased a lot recently and it seems to have become mature enough as a few companies have started using it to develop (fairly impressive casual) commercial games. If you have an iPhone I warmly recommend trying Ponon Deluxe (free) – it’s incredibly slick and a clever variation on the Tetris theme.

If you know Flash and AS3…

…you’ll be up and running in a few hours:

  • this is most feature complete implementation of the Flash API that you will get your hands on – more complete than what Starling will ever be, and more complete than the subset of AIR you can use to keep performance decent,
  • development is in haxe, a clever language with increasing IDE support that you can however code like AS3 90% of the time.

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