1 September 2010
The RIA landscape is constantly expanding. Today we branch out beyond the browser, beyond the desktop, and beyond traditional ideas for applications. Adobe has released Adobe AIR for Android as a prerelease, and we are beginning to see some amazing applications developed for the latest smartphones. This change illustrates the reach that an Adobe Flash Platform developer has now. With one language and one set of tools, a developer can build a solution that gets deployed to the browser, the desktop, and multiple mobile devices.
Video Chat for Android
Technology: Adobe AIR for Android
Rarely do I highlight a prototype in this article, but in this case, I made an exception. Adobe Platform Evangelist Christophe Coenraets developed a sample video chat application for Android that utilizes Adobe LiveCycle Collaboration Service.
With the recent announcement of FaceTime from Apple, the mobile device video chat concept is certainly a hot topic. What is most amazing about the Video Chat for Android prototype is that it actually offers video calling among multiple users, and it also supports users across multiple platforms (including other mobile devices, the browser, or the desktop). All of this is accomplished using 30 lines of code. The reason this can be accomplished with so little code is that the true power behind this application is LiveCycle Collaboration Service, an online service offered by Adobe.
Video Chat for Android is a fully functional proof of concept. The application’s source code and accompanying information is available today.
When someone pointed this application out to me, I was a bit surprised. This is honestly one use of Flex that I had never considered: keeping a vegetable garden organized. This application enables you to first enter the layout of your garden. After that, you can use the tools to easily drag and drop vegetables into place. This application knows how much space each specific vegetable must have, and it also uses a color coding system for designating different families of vegetables.
One of the challenges some gardeners face is having to plan crop rotation over multiple years. Garden Planner helps gardeners easily see what crops should be planted in which beds each year. In addition, the application sends out email notifications for sowing and planting that are specific for the vegetables the gardener selected. One of the main reasons to get a subscription to Garden Planner is that all of your data is saved each year, and you can quickly plan and lay out next year’s garden without having to reenter any information.
Garden Planner is available today with both a free trial and a subscription version.
Nettrek's Mobile ActionScript Training
Technology: AIR for Android
Nettrek's Mobile ActionScript Training provides video training on ActionScript 3 language as well as quizzes to help users determine how much they learned from the training. This application illustrates a few important points. First, it supports gestures from the end user. In addition, it demonstrates how Flash Player can display high-quality video on mobile devices as well.
Another remarkable thing about the Nettrek's Mobile ActionScript Training application is that is was taken from an existing application and only modified slightly to deploy it to Android. This illustrates the power of the Flash Platform to enable developers to build solutions across multiple screens, including the browser, the desktop, and now mobile devices.
Information about Nettrek's Mobile ActionScript Training and a demo video are available today.
The common link between all of these applications is that they are yet again expanding the definition of rich Internet applications. RIAs are no longer just for the browser. Instead they can exist on your desktop or even in your hand. They can also help people accomplish one of the most timeless tasks: gardening. The Flash Platform makes all of this possible.