Adobe announces new Flash Platform Tools
Adobe Systems Inc. today announced further advancements to the Adobe Flash Platform with the beta availability of Adobe Flash Builder 4 (formerly named Adobe Flex Builder), Adobe Flash Catalyst and the open source Flex 4 framework.
Adobe Flash Builder is a professional development tool designed to help software developers rapidly build rich Internet applications (RIAs). Adobe Flash Catalyst is a new professional interaction design tool for rapidly creating application user interfaces without coding. The tools offer a highly integrated workflow and are based on the new Flex 4 framework, an open source framework for building RIAs that will allow developers and designers to more easily collaborate on projects. The public betas of these products are available today for download on Adobe Labs at http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/flash.
"People are now expecting the same richness and ease of use in their workplace applications that they have in their daily Web experiences, but companies today are faced with strained development resources and less time to create intuitive applications," said David Wadhwani, general manager and vice president of the Platform Business Unit at Adobe. "The new Adobe Flash Platform tools help solve this challenge by reducing time to market for generating compelling applications and content. Using Adobe Flash Builder and Flash Catalyst, developers and designers can now work together more productively to create rich experiences that employees, customers and partners expect."
Adobe Flash Builder 4 is based on the open source Flex framework and comes with a powerful set of new features to simplify RIA development. Formerly known as Adobe Flex Builder, the new IDE improves basic development functionality, adds significant new data-centric development features and streamlines the design-develop workflow.
New data-centric development features allow developers to introspect services and use a simple drag and drop approach to quickly bind methods to user interface components, such as interactive charts, graphs, and data grids. These features make it easier to break down information silos and integrate business data from databases and Web services across different organizations. As a result, companies can build user-centric applications for dashboards, e-commerce and self-service Web portals that streamline business processes for their employees, customers and partners.
Also announced today is the newest release of the open source Flex framework that provides a common foundation for both developers and designers to create compelling user experiences that run on the Adobe Flash Platform. The updated Flex framework facilitates productivity and consistency, enabling developers to import functional UI created by designers using Adobe Flash Catalyst and completing the application logic while preserving the design and layout of the user experience.
Adobe Flash Catalyst, a new tool in the Adobe Flash Platform, turns interaction design from a development task into a design discipline. It allows designers to transform artwork created in Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator software into user interfaces that can then be utilized directly by developers to complete the application or site. This improved workflow allows designers to maintain control of the user experience while developers can stay focused on core application logic. Adobe Flash Catalyst lets designers demonstrate and iterate on functional user interfaces of applications at an earlier stage, securing feedback sooner in the development process. The project file is then provided to the developer to add functionality and integrate with servers and services using Adobe Flash Builder.
Additionally, using Adobe Flash Catalyst, designers can publish finished Flash file format (SWF) files for display in a Web browser. Round-trip editing with Adobe Creative Suite tools allows designers to edit structured pieces of the interaction design at any time, increasing productivity and keeping the design process moving.