Monthly Archives: February 2009

Dynamic Flex Scaffolding for Grails via REST Services : Part 2 – Scaffold Generation

This is the second post about some my ‘generate a dynamic Flex scaffold for Grails’ experiment. In this post, I will talk about the way in which the UI elements are created in Flex and demonstrate the advantages and differences of using this approach. Continue reading

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Dynamic Flex Scaffolding for Grails via REST Services : Part 1: Getting the model out to Flex via REST services.

I’m building a mechanism to build dynamic CRUD scaffolding for Flex on Grails via REST services. In this post, I will outline the overall goals of this experiment, and document some of the progress I have made with serializing Grails domain classes out as XML. Continue reading

RefundRoadtrip.ca Launches On Grails and AJAX

I worked on RefundRoadtrip.ca for H&R Block with Jakob Kulzer, and we launched the site last week.

This was an interesting challenge, as there was a lot of integration between Grails, AJAX and external APIs from AddThis, Google Analytics, YouTube and the Google Maps API. Jakob wrote most of the YouTube upload code, while I helped him with a lot of the account / analytics / backend CRUD stuff. I also wrote the stop editing layer, where we repurposed and skinned the google maps API.

It was a neat project, check it out Refund Roadtrip

Front page, Javascript Hero

Front page, Javascript Hero

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Anatomy of a Custom Grails CMS

For the last few months, I have been working to develop a Grails-based CMS system to enable the management of an existing website.

In this post, I will outline some of the high-level implementation details and some of the strategies I took. I will also outline some of the tools and plugins used to build this complete CMS system. The overall time it took to develop this entire system in Grails was about five to six weeks, with interruptions to continue developing other projects and a holiday break. I hope this bird’s eye view is helpful for whoever desires to build a similar system. Feel free to contact me for any details or implementation questions. Continue reading

Grails and BluePrintCSS

In this post, I try out the BluePrint CSS framework and try to see its advantages for making skinning a Grails based project faster and easier.

We recently launched a project which heavily used Ajax and Grails. One of the biggest challenges we saw in this project was the lack of standards when it came to skinning the site via CSS. I was surprised at the amount of hack-and-slash coding that I saw from people who did CSS for a living.

Halfway through the project, I ran into this article on Digg, and saw that Ryan Feeley had posted on his twitter that he had redone his site on the BluePrint CSS framework. I had heard of CSS frameworks before, but it seemed that it was only recently that they have come into vogue. Can they be the solution to our Grails skinning woes?

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Reasons to choose Flex over/with Flash

At work, there has been a lot of discussion over using either Flex or Flash for projects that need to be done quickly. We are a small design shop of about 20 developers and designers, with a dedicated design team of about 8 people.

Our production manager insists that Flash is the way to go because there are many ActionScript 2 users in the group, and he insists that Flex is just too complicated for our team. The Flash team has won and Flex is now looked with disdain. I find this an unfortunate misunderstanding of the technology. Given that I was never able to participate in this dialog, this is my rebuttal.

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