Passing State with a Timer

Early on in my Flex work I found many cases where I needed the function after a timer event to have some more information. In other words, I really needed to pass state of variables to the next function. You could do this by using global variables, but a cleaner way is to create a subclass of the Timer class and pass along an object.

To do this, you can create this actionscript class in your main mxml directory (or get fancy and name it within subdirectories) as ”” and the contents are simply:

// ActionScript file
// ObjTimer is just a timer that can hold an object of variables to pass along
package {
    import flash.utils.Timer;
    public class ObjTimer extends Timer {
        public var obj:Object = new Object;
        public function ObjTimer(delay:Number, repeatCount:int = 0) {
             super(delay, repeatCount);

and then you can access it from within your mxml like so for example:

var newTimer: ObjTimer = new ObjTimer(900,1);
newTimer.obj["myvar1"] = "test";
newTimer.obj["firstname"] = "joe";
newTimer.obj["count"] = 10;
newTimer.addEventListener(TimerEvent.TIMER, handleFunction);

private function handleFunction(e:Event):void{
    var value:String =["myvar1"];
    var fn:String =["firstname"];
    var count:int = parseInt(["count"]);

This example is really quick-n-dirty, you can make it nicer by adding setters and getters in the new class, but for an easy implementation this should get you going.

Fun Stuff

San Francisco Ready for Olympic Torch Protesters

Everyone knows how much of a ruckus the Olympic Torch is causing this year as it traipses its way across the world. Well here in San Francisco the officials did not want the same silliness that ensued in Paris so they are doing a variety of things, which apparently include helicopters, motorcycle police, police running, police on bicycles, buses full of police that pour out fresh policemen when the running ones get tired, police on horseback, and a big yellow car shaped like a boat.

Just over my house alone I spotted 10 helicopters, I assume a bunch of them are the media. But who knows? They could be packed with SWAT police ready to rappel down and save the torch. Photos below, click for larger versions.

Helicopters protecting the torch Helicoptors protecting the torch

The crowd was excited and peaceful, I did not see anyone charging the torch with a fire extinguisher or any other fire-intimidating device. Which is great, because, really, why protest the torch for crying out loud! The torch didn’t hurt anyone. And certainly the 80 year-old man carrying the torch in one hand, and his cane in the other, doesn’t need anyone yelling at him for the block or two he gets to participate. You want to protest China? Here’s an idea — go to the embassy. Trust me, you don’t want to cross the San Francisco police.

Police protecting the torch Police protecting the torch

Police protecting the torch A yellow boat-car protecting the torch

Fun Stuff

My iPhone

I love my iPhone! Don’t you love yours? I was what you might call an early adopter however, since I got mine in 1996. That’s right, the original iPhone. Luxurious large touch screen, full keyboard, speakerphone, and … 14.4k modem!

Yep, this thing was around a while back, spawned from the labs at National Semiconductor, launched by a startup I worked for, and then sold to Cisco Systems before they kindly gave up the domain name for an undisclosed sum. That domain name used to be registered in my name — I rue the day I assigned it over to Cisco 🙂

Fun Stuff

WTF Voicemail

My friend Steve threw a party a few weeks back and one of his uninvited guests left him this voicemail the day after. Wait for the image below and click it to hear:

[SWF]/wp-content/uploads/flash/lowe.swf, 100, 100[/SWF]

Think you know what the hell this guy is saying? Feel free to comment.


Blog is up finally!

I’ve had what you might call a blog since 1998 when back then we just called it a “web page”. I’ve been planning to create an official blog for the past few years but always had better things to do. Since I hadn’t updated my old “blog” for a few years I figured it could wait!

 But wait no longer, here it is!