Flex accessing local data

I am creating an application that draws on a lot of textual information, currently in a database. The app is to run locally, on end user machines only, not from a server, not connected to the web, and  built in flexbuilder 3. Therefore I need to access the data directly. I don't want to use AIR, but make this web-enabled as well. It looks like the only solution is to build the database containing all the content, in something local like Access, and then write it all out as an xml file, and access it directly from there. Not keen on this as editing the content will be a nightmare. Does anyone have any other solutions?
virgewestAsked:
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virgewestConnect With a Mentor Author Commented:
Thanks for all the suggestions, but I think xml is the only answer. It just seems a drag to have to convert from a db to xml, then parse it all back to a db like array. Thanks anyway.
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tbsgadiCommented:
How about using Excel?
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jbakeCommented:
if you are familar with python and python database connections, you could also design your database (mysql, postgres, ...) get the data with python and export it as xml.
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virgewestAuthor Commented:
To tbsgadi: thanks, but how would excel help? can as3 directly query an excel table?
To jbake: thank you, but the problem is not with organising the data, but reading it locally, without exporting it to xml.
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tbsgadiCommented:
I don't know whether you can directly access excel, but excel is very easy to edit & to export to xml.
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virgewestAuthor Commented:
The issue was whether I could avoid moving my data to xml, not how to get it into xxml.  I guess the answer is that xml is the only way to get data into flash. Is that right?  
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jbakeCommented:
If you want to store the data locally there is also the SharedObject:

Storing local data @ livedocs.adobe.com

Problem in this Case is getting the Data from the Database and converting it to SharedObjects. Which database do you use?

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virgewestAuthor Commented:
Data is currently in Access db. It will write out OK as xml, and I need to be able to query it with sql-like strings to get the content. So I think I'm stuck with xml. Maybe I have to write myself an xml editor for it!
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Jones911Commented:
Instead of using Flex use Air which can access the local filesystem and also jad SQL light inbuilt.  Flex can access the local files systems with the 3.2 ro 3.3 sdk there are some new features but it also requires Flash 10.

Rather then creating a Flex app select AIR app in Flexbuilder and you have full file access to the local machine and can have local databases using SQL light without needing to revert o mySQl, XML or some cvs format.
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virgewestAuthor Commented:
Thanks jones911, but as I said in my first post, I need to avoid air and keep my app web-enabled, for the users who do have internet access, while not disadvantaging those who don't. Tough call, but I still think I end up with xml.
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Jones911Commented:
Take a look at this post on reading and writing local files with Flex and Flash 10 ti should prove usefull.

http://www.mikechambers.com/blog/2008/08/20/reading-and-writing-local-files-in-flash-player-10/
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