Published on June 13, 2009
Adobe Flex 2 and Flash Lite : Adobe Flex 2 and Flash Lite Current Trends/Challenges : Current Trends/Challenges Interacting with many web-based applications today leaves much to be desired (compared to desktop applications). The web’s page-based model and lack of client-side intelligence can make even relatively simple transactions confusing and error prone. While the web deployment model has allowed IT organizations to reduce the cost of software deployment, it has also created a community of underserved business users that long for a return to the usability and responsiveness of desktop and client/server applications. As a result, businesses are losing millions of dollars per year due to low productivity or poor decisions. RIA Solution : RIA Solution Forward-looking IT professionals are now turning their attention to design patterns and technologies that can improve the client side of the equation. We are now seeing widespread deployment of rich Internet applications (RIAs). This class of applications combines the responsiveness and interactivity of desktop applications with the broad reach and ease of distribution of the web. RIA Benefits : RIA Benefits RIAs can drive increased return on investment (ROI) by simplifying and improving the user interaction. Enables users to find information more easily. Complete tasks quickly and accurately. Use rich data visualization to make better decisions. RIA History : RIA History Macromedia (now part of Adobe) introduced the term rich Internet application in 2001. RIAs combine best practices in user interaction design—for example, avoiding page refreshes, expanding information in place, and using interactivity and video to guide or train users. Since 2001 interest in RIAs has exploded. Consumer-facing sites have been the most aggressive adopters of RIA technology until now. Many enterprises are now moving to apply that technology to internal and external business applications as well. SAP has made improvement of the user experience using RIAs a major element of its 2006 product roadmap. Handset Technology : Handset Technology 150 different devices 115 million devices shipped – Oct 06 216 million by 2008 1 billion by 2010 Current comsumer electronics that have Flash Lite Jauguar dash Moxi Media Center Microsoft TV MSTV iRiver U10 Kodak Easyshare-One Zoom Digital Camera Siemens SIMPad SL4 Handset Technology : Handset Technology HandsetManufacturers that ship Flash Lite devices Fujitsu Hitachi Kyocera LG Mitsubishi Motorola NEC Nokia Panasonic Samsung Sanyo Sendo Sharp Siemens Sony Ericsson Toshiba The Need for a Service-Oriented Client : The Need for a Service-Oriented Client IT organizations have made significant investments in modernizing their back-end systems to take advantage of service-oriented architecture (SOA). IT organizations hope to become more agile as well as reduce the cost of system maintenance or updates. They can now make business processes more efficient and implement new business processes that integrate existing systems through web services or an enterprise service bus. Client-side Dilemma : Client-side Dilemma Web browsers, the main client-side application runtime, have not advanced beyond their original role as document browsers. Developers need a richer set of technical capabilities to modernize the client-side components of their applications. This new set of capabilities will provide a service-oriented client (SOC)—a runtime environment that can deliver not only the enhanced usability promised by RIAs but also reliable and secure connectivity to back-end systems. SOC Requirements : SOC Requirements What should organizations look for? High-performance, cross-platform runtime. Integrated support for text, graphics, animation, and audio/video. Enterprise data integration. Support for disconnected computing. Security and reliability. RIA Development Model : RIA Development Model Provide a familiar programming model. Leverage existing architecture. Support standard protocols and application programming interfaces (APIs). Follow common key design patterns (MVC). Integrate with existing processes. Provide rich tooling. (notepad…) Flex 2.0 : Flex 2.0 Flex Software Development Kit (SDK)—The core component library, development languages, and compiler for Flex applications. Flex Builder IDE—An Eclipse-based development environment that includes code editors, visual layout tools, project management tools, and an integrated debugger. Flex Data Services—A Java server-based application that enables high-performance data transfer, cross-tier data synchronization and conflict management, and real-time data messaging. Flex Charting—A library of extensible charting components that enables rapid construction of data visualization applications. Flex / AJAX Comparison : Flex / AJAX Comparison Flex is also free (just costs money for the ide & charting... maybe fds, if you use it, free with CF). AJAX does not work across all browsers. Flex does. AJAX is not standardized in its support for 508-compliancy. Screen readers cannot interpret partial-page refresh. Flex can be 508 compliant (must be developed with accessibility in mind). Flex gives rich experience with animations, transitions, sounds, video, etc. in its native environment. Flex allows you to use drawing API to visualize data / drawings. Flex charting ... there is nothing native to DHTML/AJAX that can compare. Reliable client-side state management. Flex and .Net : Flex and .Net Flex applications can deliver a rich user interface for back-end systems implemented on Microsoft’s .NET platform. Application clients built in Flex are server agnostic. Communicate with web services or HTTP services built with ASP.NET or C# just as easily as they can with systems implemented in Java, ColdFusion, or other technologies. Flex Data Services is implemented in Java, yet it can be deployed with a .NET environment. Flex and .Net : Flex and .Net The destinations exposed by Flex Data Services can be composed from multiple services built in .NET technologies. Moreover, using third-party adapters such as J-Integra for .NET, developers can easily expose .NET objects or APIs as services within a Flex environment. By providing a cross-platform runtime environment for rich clients, Adobe Flex complements the Microsoft .NET architecture, enabling customers with heavy investments in Microsoft systems to reach beyond those platforms and deliver applications that provide a high degree of performance and usability, regardless of the operating system on the client. Examples : Examples Harley Davidson Harley Davidson motorcycle configurator built in Flex. Examples : Examples Google Finance Google Finance combines the strengths of Ajax and the Flash runtime. Examples : Examples SAP - using Flex as the user interface technology for a new line of analytics applications.