Just got back from the monthly Flex Users Group meeting in Chicago. James Ward was scheduled to come present but he couldn’t make it and so Adam Lehman came instead. It was a good turn up with about 20 some people there. There were a bunch of Flex n00bs and when people went around introducing themselves, it felt like I was in a Flexaholics Anonymous support group.

Some of the stuff covered was old material, like the Pixel Bender (pixel shading formerly known as Hydra), Thermo, announcement of Flex 4 codename Gumbo and Flash Player 10.

The biggest things I got out of this were:

  • Pixel Bender – it’s not just about pixel shading. You can use it to offload number crunching. This reminds me of a research project out of the Accenture Technology Labs done by my colleague Manoj S. who used the graphics card GPU to do number crunching unrelated to graphics and textures.
  • Application level audio mixing of MP3s. Think of this as being able to go into MP3 files at a very low level to be able to mix audio. I already can dream up some cool visualizations that could go along really well with audio mixing.
  • Degrafa Flex skinning to be baked into Flex 4. This was news to me, but then again, I’m not up to speed on Degrafa stuff. I guess I will be for my project at work.

The schwag this time were some training DVDs – eh. Last time it was a copy of CS3 Master Suite. I’ll probably end up going every other month or so on this as stuff just won’t change that much and it’s not like you get inside scoop stuff. Adobe’s awfully mum about stuff.

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