Cool Tool Friday: Macromedia Central 1.5

I usually don’t use Macromedia products as topics for Cool Tool Friday, but I’m going to make an exception this week. Macromedia Central 1.5 (code-named Gemini) is now live. Gemini is still a developer release, which means it is still meant for developers and early adopters rather than widespread end-user adoption, but it has a lot of very cool new features for developers to play with, like:

  • File I/O support
  • File upload and download support
  • Automatic network detection
  • Flash MX 2004 extensions to better integrate Flash authoring with Central during development
  • Support for Flash Player 7, ActionScript 2.0, and the new component architecture
  • Support for instant messaging and presence detection using the AOL AIM and ICQ networks

We’ve also significantly restructured the Central licensing models in ways we’re pretty sure developers will be very happy with (see link below).

To learn more about Gemini and what it means to you, take a look at the article “What is Gemini, and Why Should You Care?” That will give you a good foundation for understanding Central, and where the technology is headed. Here are some other resources you might find useful:

There are tons of resource available on the website, but if you have a question you can’t find an answer to, feel free to ask me.

7 Responses to Cool Tool Friday: Macromedia Central 1.5

  1. Adam says:

    I like the new licencing model, which opens up lots of possibilities that were impractical under per seat costs. However, I can’t figure out how one could develop a Central App as an open-source/shared-source model (think a typical Sourceforge hosted project) since every version by every developer would suddenly need a new product.xml Am I missing something?

  2. JesterXL says:

    As long as you CVS the product.xml file, you should be fine. The only dynamic part of the file is the URL it’s hosted at. This assumes the SourceForge project had a default vendor id for the product in the first place.If I were to host some project files at Source Forge, I’d host:- .FLA’s- .AS’s- sample product.xmlYou’d still have to host the app somewhere to actually have it installed in Central. That is irrespective of the app’s actually functionality (as long as webservices etc. fall into same domain rules).So, the code on a SoureForge project wouldn’t change, only the installation deteails, that being the product.xml file.

  3. Thijs says:

    I was very excited when i heard about this new release of Central, but it turns out that it’s pretty useless to develop commercial apps for Central if you’re not from the USA. :(“The current Try/Buy infrastructure is only enabled for United States located developers selling to United States end users” Could you tell us more about when Try/Buy will be available to developers outside the US?It seems to me this release is created for developers in the USA and I don’t know any europeans using AOL (or ICQ), MSN is used much more over here..

  4. Christian Cantrell says:

    We don’t have a specific date for international try/buy support. In fact, all I can say right now is that we realize this is a big issue, and we are very seriously looking at ways to better support international developers. Sorry I can’t be more specific, but I have no additional information right now.

  5. Thijs says:

    And why did Macromedia put in the Accuweather and MovieFinder applications in Central 1.5 when It’s useless for people outside the US: it only accepts zipcodes from the US!! Would have made a lot more sense to me if the pre-installed applications were useful for everybody (yes there are more countries outside the US).

  6. Peter says:

    I’ve had the same comments Thijs, eventhough this is just a developer release it can be dangerous to alienate developers outside of the US as early adopters for the technology.I had hoped they would’ve found another company willing to develop an internationally relevant app for deployment with Central. I do think Macromedia is aware of these issues and is working on improving these limitations.

  7. Christian Cantrell says:

    Good points regarding internationalized sample apps. I will definitely pass these comments along and they will be considered for the next version.