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Amethyst Flex Designer - The Full Monty!

First Look At The Integrated Designer
by Huw Collingbourne
Tuesday 3 February 2009.

If you’d like a first look at the Amethyst Professional IDE, head over to Andrew Shorten’s blog...

While our current beta of Amethyst has a good range of code editing features and we’ve also demoed a few of the drag-and-drop capabilities of the Amethyst Designer which will form part of the ‘Professional’ edition, we haven’t released any pictures showing the whole works - until now!

Adobe Platform Evangelist Andrew Shorten has just published the first screenshots of the full Amethyst Professional IDE on his blog. Bear in mind that these are pictures of our current ‘in-development’ software and a number of things will be added or changed prior to the final release. Even so, it gives you a pretty good idea of where we are at.

Amongst other things, the screenshots show that the design environment is completely integrated into Visual Studio. You can drag and drop controls from the standard Visual Studio Toolbox into the Designer and use the Properties panel to edit the properties of a selected control. The Designer itself is tightly bound to the code editor so you can easily switch between the design and the code.

As Andrew Shorten says, we are not “just implementing equivalent Flex Builder features like-for-like” but are also adding new features. That is absolutely correct. Our whole design philosophy has been to make Amethyst a Visual Studio IDE through and through. So while it inevitably shares many features with Flex Builder, it is by no means a Flex Builder ‘clone’. Our real goal is to make Amethyst entirely ‘at home’ in Visual Studio. A C# or VB programmer should feel immediately comfortable with Amethyst. In order to achieve this goal, Amethyst clearly has to integrate with the usual set of Visual Studio tools - the Properties and Events panels, the Alignment toolbar, the component Toolbox, the debugger, editor and so on.

Keep an eye on this blog for more details soon...

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