ColdFusion Muse

Two Hotshot Developers Build Flex Gallery - Film at 11:00

Mark Kruger April 18, 2007 7:42 PM farcry, Flex Comments (10)

I have 2 amazing young men working for me named Axel Jensen and Jake Churchill. Although they were both hired as entry level Coldfusion programmers their meteoric rise in knowledge is only surpassed by the number of donuts they eat and the sheer number of musical artists that they seem to know by name. Jake has quickly become an expert at working with Farcry. He has personally shepherded 12 separate Farcry sites in a short 9 months. I guess I should say "birthed" 12 Farcry sites in 9 months (ha). Axel has devoured flex and build some amazing applications interfacing with Google Maps, charting, data visualization etc. I'm overjoyed to have hired 2 burgeoning geniuses. My biggest problem is going to be how to keep them :)

The 2 of them collaborated on a flex based photo gallery that is among the better ones I have seen. It was done for a client of ours, (see their new coming site at Axel wrote a rundown of it on his blog and he included the source code for all of you aspiring flex developers out there. In the words of the Governator of the great state of California, Happy Flexing!

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  • Eric cancil's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Eric cancil | 4/18/07 6:26 PM
    Kind of reminds me of the one I built recently
    This took all of 3-4 hours to make
  • Mark Fuqua's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Mark Fuqua | 4/18/07 7:57 PM
    Not to be rude, but your's seems like it was built in 3-4 hours. The example built by the guys at cfwebtools, while maybe not an enterprise application, or a masterpiece of design, certainly seems much more polished and complete than yours. Bad comparison.
  • Eric Cancil's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Eric Cancil | 4/18/07 8:03 PM
    To be honest i was thinking the same about that one. It's pretty unstyled, and static. I'm not quite sure whats polished about it at all really to be honest. Not to start a flame war, but I was pretty underwhelmed with it after your glowing praises of it.
  • Nate's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Nate | 4/18/07 8:55 PM
    I think the hopec one is sick. It's clean and just feels good. If there was view source I would use it at work.

    Eric, I enjoy your blog but I agree with Mark. Your application scrolls down a bunch even though there is nothing there. And I think you are going for a Polaroid feel when they are tiles, but when you click on them they are aligned to the left so you don't have equal borders and the Polaroid handle edge gets big so that it doesn't look like a Polaroid any more.

    Now look at how the hopec does it. Handles multiple image sizes, very uniform and looks great to the eye.

    Again, i like ur blog Eric, but I think Mark should give his people a bonus.
  • Eric Cancil's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Eric Cancil | 4/18/07 9:06 PM
    @ Nate
    I'm sorry and like I said I'm hardly trying to flame, but I just don't see it. I'm hardly trying to pitch my 'gallery,' much less pitch it as the end all of galleries. In fact I posted it on my blog as what could be done in Flex in only a few hours. Hence I used some of the flexlib components (the flow container which has some bug that makes the page go really long sometimes - its the lost of empty space you commented on), and skimped on some of the alignment and whatnot. I just don't see where this gallery offers -any- features or leverages the flex framework. And it feels very static and 'flexy.' Either way I'm done posting on this message, I didn't even mean for it to get this far.
  • mkruger's Gravatar
    Posted By
    mkruger | 4/19/07 8:00 AM

    There are things I like about your gallery. I like the popup description and the idea of search (although I'm not sure how to use it). I like the ability to adjust the number of tiles. However, I find the animation somewhat disconcerting. I don't like the way the tiles shift when one image is brought to the forefront. I don't like the fact that the tiles are not uniformly the same. I also don't like the web tiles on a black background. Still, I see where you are going and it's kind of cool for a few hours work.


    The flex ap is designed to be skinnable into a variety of settings. It is fed by an XML file and there is an admin piece to go with it (although I don't think they are done with it yet). The idea was a flex based Farcry plugin - so we could put up a gallery on any of our FC sites and include a custom admin to manage it. The end result should make it pretty pluggable. The end result (hopefully) is the CFWT mantra - write once use many :)
  • Jake Churchill's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Jake Churchill | 4/19/07 8:54 AM
    We did not publish the source for the hope center site but we did on the main project. You can access the source by right clicking. Go to
  • Tony Petruzzi's Gravatar
    Posted By
    Tony Petruzzi | 4/20/07 8:20 AM
    Funny, I just did one recently for a client and it took 10 minutes using jQuery and some plugins.

    I'm not trying to knock down what these guys did, it looks fantastic and really smooth, but when you're under a deadline good old jQuery is the way to go for me.
  • TJ Downes's Gravatar
    Posted By
    TJ Downes | 5/2/07 9:46 AM
    Joe, yours is really nice but when you click too fast it goes all wonky and you can no longer see the pictures. they show up mostly trasparent and sometimes the size is trapped small. Also, the buttons make it kinda clunky. A slider or some other component to navigate the pages would be nice. On large gallieries the buttons would become a interface issue
  • TJ Downes's Gravatar
    Posted By
    TJ Downes | 5/2/07 9:49 AM
    Sorry, Jake, not Joe