After Matt Rice and Jeremy Larkin swfnews.com have released the alpha of their multi-threading class, there has been some discussion about the usefulness of such a class or some nasty remarks about its "novelty factor" ("huuuh?!?! this is simply an emulation using setInterval, *LOL*" [Guy Watson on jdb cyberspace]).
I think the approach is great: to have everything handy packaged and to avoid the ugly "Actionscript is running slow" nag-screen in long loops.
Still the basic idea of real multi-threading has caught me - it is definitely not possible within one flash file, but what, if you split a task among several flash files? At least under Windows (perhaps OS X, too) it should theoretically be possible to utilize the OS's multi-threading abilities. The flash files can share data via localConnection. There might be some use for that.
Here is a little experiment where I have a simple calculation counter (internally it calculates Math.sqrt) that runs either in only one thread or in three separate flash files at the same time. If multi-threading would NOT work it should take 3 times as long to calculate all three at the same time than only one. But as you can see yourself the time difference is only a little higher (probably due to the localConnection calls).Posted at July 16, 2002 01:54 PM | Further reading