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Amethyst Beta 5 for Adobe Flex (Preview)

Now with refactoring
by Huw Collingbourne
Friday 22 May 2009.

SapphireSteel Software will shortly be releasing beta 5 of Amethyst, our Visual Studio IDE for developing applications for the Flash Platform.

Amethyst beta 5 includes numerous new and improved features which we will describe in detail after the release of the software next week.

To give you a quick taster of what’s to come, here are a few screenshots to show...

Refactoring

In this release you will be able to rename variables, methods and classes then leave it to Amethyst to sort out the renaming of all references to them. Optionally you will be able preview changes before going ahead with the renaming operation. Beta 5 also includes ‘encapsulate field’ refactorings to create getter and setter accessor methods for variables and update code throughout your project to use the accessor methods instead of referring to the variable itself.

Configuration-Dependent Property Pages

The Amethyst Project Property pages have been completely redesigned in beta 5. These work in a similar manner to the C# property pages. Seven tabbed pages let you tailor grouped sets of properties such as compiler arguments, conditional compilation symbols, web-server or launch-page options and much more. Many options are ‘configuration dependent’ which means that different sets of options can be saved into named configurations such as ‘debug’ or ‘release’ and these can then be applied instantly by selecting the configuration name from a combo box.

Go To Definition/Find All References

Amethyst provides numerous ways of finding information and navigating to classes and methods. These include the Visual Studio Object Browser and Class View (from the ‘View’ menu), the Task List (to display and move to embedded ‘Todo’ comments), Bookmarks (via the Bookmarks toolbar or the Edit menu) and, of course, all the usual Visual Studio Find and Replace tools. Amethyst beta 5 also provides a Go To Definition option which lets you highlight an identifier name and navigate to its definition. And there is a ‘Find All References’ tool which rapidly searches your project for references to classes, methods and variables and lets you go straight to them by clicking the items in the ‘Find Symbol Results’ window.

These are just a few of the new features in Amethyst beta 5. We will provide more details of these, and other, features after the release of the new beta in a few days.

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