Paul Robertson's words, punctuated

Thoughts on development, user-centered design, code, etc. by Paul Robertson

Flash Builder 4.5 tip: Use Block Selection mode

One new feature in Flash Builder 4.5 that’s small but incredibly useful is the new block selection mode. (Sometimes known as multi-line selection mode.)

This feature allows you to edit the same position in a block of lines at once. This is very useful when you’re copying and pasting a block of code and you only need to change one thing, like a variable name, in several lines of code. The video below demonstrates this much more clearly than I could explain it in text.

To toggle block selection mode, click this toolbar button (it’s close to the “Mark Occurrences” highlighter button):

Block Selection mode icon in Flash Builder 4.5

You can also use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl/Cmd+Alt+A.

As promised, here’s a video demo I put together showing a couple of my most common uses for Block Selection mode. (You’ll obviously want to watch it in full screen, or at least at a larger size on the video’s Vimeo page.)

Block Selection Mode in Flash Builder 4.5 from Paul Robertson on Vimeo.