Introducing Starling
Building GPU Accelerated Applications
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: January 2012
Pages: 120

Starling is an ActionScript 3 2D framework developed on top of the Stage3D APIs (available on desktop in Flash Player 11 and Adobe AIR 3). Starling is mainly designed for game development, but could be used for many other use cases. Starling makes it possible to write fast GPU accelerated applications without having to touch the low-level Stage3D APIs.

Most Flash developers want to be able to leverage GPU acceleration (through Stage3D) without the need to write such higher-level frameworks and dig into the low-level Stage3D APIs. Starling is completely designed after the Flash Player APIs and abstracts the complexity of Stage3D (Molehill) and allows easy and intuitive programming for everyone.

Obviously Starling is for ActionScript 3 developers, especially those involved in 2D game development; of course you will need to have a basic understanding of ActionScript 3. By its design (lightweight, flexible and simple), Starling can be used also be used for other use cases like UI programming. That said, everything is designed to be as intuitive as possible, so any Java™ or .Net™ developer will get the hang of it quickly as well.

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oreillyIntroducing Starling
 
4.2

(based on 10 reviews)

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (8)
  • Helpful examples (8)
  • Concise (6)
  • Well-written (6)
  • Accurate (5)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Novice (8)
    • Intermediate (5)
    • Student (3)
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      • Developer (10)

    Reviewed by 10 customers

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    4.0

    Great Info, Good examples

    By WhiteHotLoveTiger

    from Moncton, NB

    About Me Developer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Accurate

    Cons

    • Terrible Grammar At Times

    Best Uses

    • Novice

    Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

    I read through this while developing my first Starling application. It was very helpful because it explained things starting from the very basics of Starling, and gave generally good code examples.

    The biggest complaint I have with this book is the grammar. Many lines are painful to read and make me cringe. I'm not sure English is the author's first language. If you can get past that though, it's a great introduction.

    The other thing I didn't like was the assumption that you'd use Flash Builder as your IDE. There are a number of other good options out there (I tried FDT but settled on IntelliJ IDEA). This isn't a big problem, but there are a couple of places where the book references doing something specific to the Flash Builder menu.

    Neither of these two gripes prevented me from making good use of the book. I found it to be a very valuable resource.

     
    5.0

    good tutorial - nothing less, nothing mo

    By dvk

    from Ukraine

    About Me Developer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Concise
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Novice

      Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

      It's pretty nice book, got exactly what I expected.
      No long side stories, no outdated info, everything's fine for me.
      However I was surprised to see links to commercial recommended programs (small gfx utils that every middle+ developer can make free) and mass Mac / iOS propaganda.
      Note: Starling has a good site with mass docs, examples and open sources. So I recommend read this book during one evening and start practice.

       
      5.0

      Great Book

      By Paconde

      from Huelva, Spain

      About Me Developer, Sys Admin

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Intermediate
        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

        Great book to learn to develope in AS3 and Starling. It contain many examples and I read it very fast.
        Very recommended.

         
        5.0

        Definitely 5+

        By Cherniv

        from Or Yehuda , Jerusalem

        About Me Developer

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Concise
        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Intermediate
          • Novice

          Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

          Great book , great framework

           
          5.0

          good introduction for first time use

          By ccm

          from Taiwan

          About Me Developer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Accurate
          • Concise
          • Easy to understand
          • Helpful examples
          • Well-written

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Novice
            • Student

            Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

            If you have never used Starling this will help you get started quickly. Very easy to read and understand.

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Right to the point

            By js

            from GR

            About Me Developer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Accurate
            • Easy to understand
            • Helpful examples
            • Well-written

            Cons

            • Too basic

            Best Uses

            • Novice

            Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

            It was simple to underastand nice examples, great book.

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            1.0

            Errors in example code.

            By Hopeful

            from Canada

            About Me Developer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

              Cons

              • Too many errors

              Best Uses

              • Intermediate

              Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

              It's frustrating when you purchase a book to help you learn a subject only to find that the example code that comes with it contains errors. This is the case with the very first example code called 'TopDownDemo.as'. The code won't run because of an error in the class files that come with the sample code. I don't feel like debugging the examples and I don't think it's my job.
              Also, there is no way to contact the author to enquire about the error except through the publisher.

              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              It's a gift

              By YopSolo

              from Paris, France

              About Me Developer, Educator

              Pros

              • Accurate
              • Concise
              • Easy to understand
              • Helpful examples
              • Well-written

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Expert
                • Intermediate
                • Novice
                • Student

                Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

                A great book for free.
                Thx a lot for that !

                (10 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                The milestone to start with Starling

                By luca mezzalira

                from Padova - Italy

                About Me Developer

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Concise
                • Easy to understand
                • Helpful examples

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Intermediate
                  • Novice

                  Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

                  This book is for any Flash Platform developer that is looking to create next generation of mobile and desktop apps (or games).
                  It's a book so practical that introduce you to the Starling framework, explaining how it works with simple examples of code that you can put in practice in a while.
                  Thibault guides you showing each object presents in this framework, that is an abstraction of Stage3D API introduced with Flash Player 11 and AIR 3.
                  With Starling you can aim better performance in your 2D applications thankfully the GPU acceleration added on Stage3D, with this book you can discover what there is behind and starting to develop with it.

                  (6 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  Great intro to Starling, but not perfect

                  By craiggrummitt

                  from Melbourne, Australia

                  About Me Developer

                  Verified Reviewer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to understand
                  • Helpful examples

                  Cons

                  • Too many errors

                  Best Uses

                  • Expert

                  Comments about oreilly Introducing Starling:

                  A great introduction to Starling, well structured, well explained and contains comprehensive examples.

                  The only major drawback is there are obvious editorial issues in the text and bugs/errors in the code examples.

                  But - it's free, so I'm not complaining. It's an invaluable read if you're interested in this new framework.

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