Sometimes it's just not hard to be a bit of a fan-boy. Yesterday afternoon I added a new post about Flex and Web Services that require more complex headers to be assigned. I realized later that evening that I did not see the post show up in my Reader from the Adobe MXNA feed.

This morning, out of curiosity, I decided to check the MXNA site to see if the post was aggregated but I just missed it. Turns out my site disappeared from MXNA. Naturally, I was a bit bummed but, really, it wasn't a big deal. I felt pretty good that I didn't do something "wrong", so I resubmitted my blog.

Before navigating away from MXNA, I dropped them a note to ask if there would have been any particular reason a site would be dropped. A few hours later I received a nice note from a member of the MXNA team at Adobe. The gentleman was very nice and apologized that my blog was removed and informed me that it was due to a technical issue related to their DB (kind of nice to know the "big boys" have these troubles, too :). He advised me just to resubmit my site. I replied to thank him and let him know it was no problem and that I did resubmit my site this morning.

And this is where I have to give some props and kudos to Adobe. Within a matter of minutes from my reply, the gentleman had replied back to let me know he found my submission and approved it so I was back in action.

I know this is a small thing and, perhaps, not worthy of a post. But I really think it speaks volumes about the kind of people and attitude at Adobe. It was an example of excellent customer service.

I think we developers (myself included!) often take corporations to task for behavior or practices we find bothersome, wrong, etc. Yet, when those same companies do right by their customers or take that extra step, we fail to give them the credit for it. So, in that vein, thank you MXNA/Adobe. You guys rock!


Thank you, Rachel!
Rachel Luxemburg
Hi Anonymous, I work on the Adobe User Group program. Aside from the 700 or so worldwide user group listed on, you might also try checking, there's some Adobe communities there as well.

:) Rachel
Thank you very much Ben and Craig for your positive outlook. I don't mean to sound so discouraged. I guess I didn't read about their original endeavor to offer the software for free, but I definitely respect them for their philanthropic efforts! I will be giving them another chance and I did take your advice on finding a user group. Although I didn't manage to find one in my area (from Adobe's website), there is one 150 miles away and I will determine to find more.
The dev site that you listed looks great too!
Thanks for putting up with my frustration about making the transition to a new platform. I guess I just have to remember that while on the proverbial 'technology treadmill', there's no gain without at least a little pain.

Thank you for your excellent advice!

Does anyone know of any good resources / user group listings outside of what is on Adobe's site?
Ben Dalton

I'm not terribly neutral on the situation since I am a Flex developer/instructor. But I am disappointed to hear your views on programming for the Flash Platform.

First off, the 'free flex builder for unemployed developers' was a 100% free full-version of Flex builder. Not a 60-day trial like you've suggested. If you view their site now, it states "We have received over 15,000 requests for participation in the program, so we are currently not able to accept new enrollees". That is why the link is for the 60-day trial now.

In terms of the training materials provided by Adobe. I'm really surprised that you found them to be inadequate. The Flex Developer Center ( on has a wealth of information that I find myself referencing all the time, even as a seasoned Flex developer.

In terms of community, Adobe very actively works with the community to provide resources and encouragement for individual developers, user groups, and events. Ask the folks at 360|Flex if they think Adobe has helped. As a user group manager, I can tell you that there is no shortage of effort on their part to assist.

I recommend that you connect up with a local user group or find your way to a Flex conference to see Adobe's commitment to the community.

I say all this because, while their commitment to the community is paramount, the quality of the platform is where they truly shine. Developing on the Flash Platform has provided me the ability to implement interfaces that really go beyond the term "rich" and data driven applications that were just unheard of in the web world before Flex. Whether or not Flex will stay "top dog" in this RIA world remains to be seen, but it is certain that they have ushered in a new generation of web based applications.

Download the free Flex trial, connect up with a user group, and dive in. Learning Flex will open your eyes to a whole new world of possibilities.

Just my 2 cents.
Craig Kaminsky
I'm really sorry to hear you haven't had good luck with Adobe. I can definitely understand your frustration!

I do agree that the initial software integration post Macromedia purchase was not very good but the "new" CS4 is pretty amazing in terms of that. Flash, Flex, and Fireworks (or Photoshop, if that's your thing) work together seamlessly now. While pricey (and it is most definitely expensive), it's been an excellent product.

All in all, I think I've been pretty lucky with them over the years. Back when I went from PCs to Macs (late 2006), I was going to pay another $1000+ for a whole new CS2 (I am pretty sure CS2 was the current release at that time) and wasn't too thrilled about it, since I just dropped a bunch of cash on a MacBook Pro. When I called Adobe, the sales rep actually informed me of a free upgrade from PC to Mac and sent me a free CS2 for Mac. Again, though, I think a lot of that is good luck (getting to the right person at the right time).
Sorry to disagree with you Craig but I have yet to find one thing that would make want to make the move to Adobe programming. I was interested in Shockwave/Flash/Director back in the days of lingo before actionscript. I have to admit that I was a little disappointed when Adobe bought out Macromedia. I feel like they did a poor job promoting the product, as well as integrating it with what they already had: photoshop, premiere, etc. But the biggest disappointment that I have always had with Adobe is their lack of support in the community and the expense of their products. I mean they charge more than anyone else, even Microsoft for some of their products and they do very little to help the community that desires to learn their software/platforms.
Microsoft on the other hand has always done an excellent job in training the community with MSDN and user groups, and free training.
I recently had a change of heart however, when a coworker told me about their offering of Flex free to unemployed developers. Having been recently laid off, I decided to give them a try. That was until I read the fine print. They arent offering anything free at all. Just the same 60 day trial that they offer everyone else. It wouldnt be so bad if they hadnt made it appear that they were doing something good for the community.
So then I followed the link to their free training site. I was surprised by how limited it was. I mean really. Is this all you can do with AIR/Flex? You would think they would be proud of it and want to showcase everything it can do.
They also had a link to free online books on Flex from safari online. But this isnt really free either, just a trial subscription!
I mean what is Adobe doing for the community, besides making people think they're really doing something?
As I missing something? What in the world do they bring to the table that Microsoft hasnt already done (or way surpassed them on)? Is it just me? Or am I just not feeling the love?