…it’s here. It sure took its time.
The jump from ActionScript 2.0 to ActionScript 3.0 is a big one. Despite bigger syntactical and structural similarities, it’s a much wider gap than the one we had to go through from ActionScript 1 to ActionScript 2 because it can’t be done gradually – old code is not compatible – and it can require some major rethinking on how websites are structured, as it forces you to do everything the right way.
Luckily, the structure of all my AS2 work nowadays closely resembles the structure an AS3 project demands of you; there are some big amounts of abstraction employed on the projects I do (even if the functionality as well as the interface itself are not the ones you’d expect on your run-of-the-mill user interfaces) and the new language seems specially fit for that kind of heavy OOP work, as I have been doing some heavy AS3 work on personal projects and I have grown quite happy with it.
The truth is, I once believed a more orthodox approach to OOP wouldn’t be practical on extremely custom user interfaces, but it has proven that given time and with the right amount of planning and framework building – I have my own collection of classes I reuse on every new project – project building and maintenance can become a piece of cake. Still lengthy and demanding, of course, but with platform frustration kept to a minimum.
The existing AS3 documentation is the big problem; I was just waiting for the book to arrive to take my AS3 usage to the next step. The transition will be a bit painful – and hey, the book is huge! – but I’m confident the grass will grow in a much greener fashion once it is completed.