Finding a single development environment for all purposes has so far proven an unattainable goal. But with the advent of rich Internet applications (RIA), development nirvana gets a bit closer.
In the past year or so, a number of cross-platform RIA technologies have been released that can double as desktop application technologies. I'll discuss four technologies that accomplish this trick: Adobe Air, Curl Nitro, Google Gears and Microsoft Silverlight. I installed them all, explored them and used them for several months in the course of my work.
Air adds a number of desktop-specific classes and components to Adobe's base Flash and Flex classes. Air 1.5 applications can update themselves, interact with the system clipboard, use the file system, use native windows and menus, use a local SQL database and store encrypted data. Air also supplies a number of capabilities to the desktop environment for which Flash and Flex applications normally rely on the browser -- for example, HTML rendering, HTTP handling and network detection.
Publicly available Adobe Air applications at the Air Showcase range from simple desktop widgets to full-blown applications. Air is supported for development and runtime on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.
I am more of a Flex and AJAX developer than a Flash designer. I found the Air extensions to Flex fairly straightforward to learn and use from Flex Builder, although I would have been happier if the Air documentation were included in the Flex Builder help file instead of only being available online.
Air runtime, Air SDK, Flex 3 SDK and Aptana Studio are free. Pricing for Aptana Studio Pro is $199, $699 for Adobe Flash CS4 Professional, $249 for Adobe Flex Builder 3 Standard, $699 for Adobe Flex Builder 3 Professional and $399 for Adobe Dreamweaver CS4.
Cortana, Windows 10’s built-in virtual assistant, is both really cool and really creepy.
Services like Keep, Evernote and Microsoft OneNote are often called "note-taking apps." But they've...
It had a good 36-year run, but its day is done.
Microsoft has set March 26 as the end date for support of the original Windows 10 edition that arrived...
The MacBook turned 25 in late 2016. From the early PowerBook to the latest MacBook Pro, we explore the...
The Eureka Park area at the CES trade show offered startups a chance to show what they can do. We...
PaaS. Once upon a time it was supposed to be the cure for all enterprise IT woes. Now it's just a front...