Herding Code 120: Ryan Stewart on RIAs and All Things Adobe

This episode of Herding Code the guys talk to Ryan Stewart, a developer evangelist at Adobe.

  • Scott K asks about the pricing of Adobe products. Ryan explains why things are priced as they are and talks about the subscription model alternative.
  • Jon talks about the open other free or inexpensive alternatives for beginning Adobe development since the formats are generally open sourced. Ryan agrees and also explains that Adobe’s entire pricing model is built around tools, whereas Microsoft’s includes both tools and servers.
  • Jon asks about the licensing around Flash Media Server. Ryan explains that it’s not something general developers will need to deal with.
  • Scott K speculates around the idea of appliances from Adobe which would be complete video / media processing systems. Ryan says he thinks that’s interesting but he doesn’t expect anything like that to happen.
  • Jon asks about the general trends away from some rich internet abuses in the past. Ryan and Jon talk about the polyfill approach for using Flash and RIA technologies to augment browsers when the features aren’t supported. Ryan and Scott K talk about how developers and the tech press have quickly forgotten that many of the new emerging browser capabilities (typography, media, animation) are modeled after capabilities that RIA technologies initially pioneered.
  • Scott K points out that this is a good segue to the new Edge tool. Ryan talks about how Edge is a designer tool that creates CSS3 and JavaScript animation using the timeline that Flash designers are used to. Jon mentions that this makes more sense to him when thinking about Adobe primarily as a developer tools company rather than a platform oriented company.
  • Jon asks about Adobe support for HTML5 / CSS3 development in Edge with Flash fallback. Ryan talks about how they generally keep them separate, and if browser-based animation isn’t supported it just won’t play.
  • Kevin asks about how Edge affects the accessibility of the underlying content.
  • Jon asks about how Flash Builder 4.5 allows for developing native iOS and Android applications. Ryan explains how it works and clarifies how it complies with Apple developer guidelines. There’s a mention of the popular Mono apps which run on iOS.
  • Twitter question from Chris Edwards: "What are the are the best tools for automated testing of Flash UI’s" – Ryan recommends HP Quick Test Pro
  • Scott K asks about Adobe Air – it seemed great, but seems to have kind of fallen out of favor. What’s the deal there? Ryan talks about how Air was both a great, bold idea, but also a new challenge for Adobe, in that Air applications are much longer running than most Flash apps.
  • Jon asks about some annoyances in installing updates for Air, Flash, etc. Ryan explains some of the reasons for the updates. Jon asks about the possibility to add in more of an auto-update experience.
  • Jon asks Ryan about some of the new features in Flash. Ryan talks about a lot of features, including Stage Video and 3D GPU support and graphics features. Scott K. asks if there are opportunities for leveraging WebGL, and Ryan says that there have been discussions about that but nothing’s in progress yet.
  • Ryan asks the guys what they’re expecting at at BUILD, and they all clam up. Scott K. ask about Flash on Windows Phone. Ryan says it’d be great, but he’d be surprised given the Silverlight support on Windows Phone. Kevin’s happy that speculation will finally stop. Scott K. talks it’s good that developers are having to care about memory and CPU usage again.
  • Ryan talks about the difficulty of bringing richness and creativity to the client without adversely impacting performance.
  • Scott K asks about the current state of Adobe Labs. Ryan points out that the Adobe MAX conference is coming up in October, so Labs will probably be pretty quiet until then.
  • Jon asks about Muse. Ryan explains that really targeted at print designers who want to create web content, so it’s not really a tool for web designers or developers.
  • Jon asks about some Adobe client products which are developed in Air.
  • Scott K. asks about what big surprises may be happening at MAX this year. Ryan and and Scott K. speculate a bit more about BUILD, and Ryan tells listeners who recognize him at BUILD to please say hi. Jon says he might sneak in if he can locate a catering costume.

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Herding Code 120: Ryan Stewart on RIAs and all things Adobe