Chapter 8. Using Flex Visual Controls


  • Understanding Flex controls

  • Using text controls

  • Using layout controls

  • Using button controls

  • Using interactive controls

  • Presenting images

In previous chapters, I've described various aspects of Flex application development and declared instances of controls such as Label and Button.

Flex uses two types of visual components:

  • Containers. Visual components that can contain other objects.

  • Controls. Visual components that display information or provide the application with user interaction capabilities.

In Flex 4, there are two distinct groups of components:

  • Spark. These components are new to Flex 4. They share a new architecture for skinning, or defining the control's visual appearance. The Spark control set also includes a set of controls known as primitives that aren't skinnable but give you access to important features of Flash Player 10. These include the controls for rendering vector graphics such as Rect and Ellipse, and for embedding bitmap graphics such as BitmapGraphic.

  • MX. These components are inherited from the Flex 3 SDK, and many are still used in Flex 4. In some cases, such as the DataGrid and its related controls, the MX versions will eventually be replaced by Spark versions as the Flex SDK evolves. In other cases, such as ViewStack and other navigation containers, the Spark component set doesn't implement the exact equivalent functionality yet, butFlex 4 adds features that make these components useful in applications that primarily ...

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