KillerSites Blog

Using Flash to replace VBA?

August 4, 2008

I recently got this email:

I have read or watched a few of the items about flash, but still have not gotten an answer to a big question I have.

Here is the question with a little of my background first. I’m a career programmer/developer having gotten my degree in 1972, I have been in the business ever since.

… I have done some web development for the last 4 years. Not full time, just part time. I spend most of my time developing and maintaining MS Access databases, using VBA to control whatever needs to be controlled. With that background, I would like better control over the UI within a web page and have the feeling that Flash is the tool to use, but I have not been able to find a good summary of what is possible with flash, from an interactive standpoint.

The short answer to this question is: YES.

Flash has evolved from being an web animation program to a full fledged application framework. It includes built in drag-and-drop UI components, data binding along with a powerful object oriented language that looks like a cross between Java and Javascript: Flash Actionscript.

Since Flash is a vector based engine, it provides a pixel accurate layout capability … that means you can produce any type of layout / UI you could possibly want for your application.

Adobe has created a framework for Flash called Flex. This extends Flash and provides a very rich set of tools for building applications for both the Web and the desktop. To get you Flash based applications on the desktop, Adobe has created the Air framework.


Stefan Mischook