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Enterprise Development with Flex by Yakov Fain, Anatole Tartakovsky, Victor Rasputnis

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Chapter 8. Performance Improvement: Selected Topics

We have to stop optimizing for programmers and start optimizing for users.

Jeff Atwood

The greatest performance improvement of all is when a system goes from not working to working.

John Ousterhout

People consider your web application fast for one of two reasons: either it’s actually fast or it gives an impression of being fast. Ideally, you should do your best to create an RIA that is very responsive, but if you hit the ceiling imposed by a technology you’re using, at least try to improve the perceived performance of the system. To draw an analogy to the weather, the temperature may be cool, but it “feels like” freezing. No matter how slow your RIA is, it should never feel like freezing.

In this chapter, you’ll learn how to use application preloaders to make the first page of your RIA appear on the display as soon as possible while loading the rest of the application in the background.

Once loaded on the user’s machine, your application should use its memory efficiently. To help you identify trouble spots, we’ll discuss possible drains on performance, such as memory leaks, garbage collectors, complex containers, event listeners, and closures. For example, if your application experiences memory leaks, Flash Builder’s profiler may help. With it, you can monitor the number of object instances to ensure that you don’t have memory leaks. The monitoring of your application performance must be done continuously from the start of your project. ...

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