This has been an interesting year for the Adobe developer community. We’ve seen public betas of the next generation of Flash Builder, Flash Catalyst, and watched the birth of a large open source project at Adobe in the form of the Flex SDK. We’ve also seen the beginning of developer services like Adobe Flash Collaboration Services, a public beta of ColdFusion which includes lots of Flex/AIR integration goodness, and heard a lot of talk about mobile devices and Flash. And that’s one of the reasons I’m so excited about RIAdventure. Getting a bunch of smart, passionate, RIA minds in the room is a great way to set the stage for next year.
One of the things that’s nice about RIAdventure is that it comes after MAX so we’ll not only have a whole bunch of new stuff to talk about, but we’ll be able to reflect on the entire year while discussing what’s coming up in the future.
My primary complaint of the Flash/Flex community is that there isn’t enough higher level thinking. With two powerhouses like Microsoft and Adobe in the space and a number of smaller, more nimble, and passionate startups, there’s a lot of different ideas about what RIAs are or should be. Throw in the open web initiatives with HTML5, and CSS3 and it really hasn’t been a better time to be building applications on the web. What does that mean for the Adobe developer community? What do you like about what we’re doing, what do you hate about it? The focus this year has been on mobile devices, and that’s extremely important. But it also means that the next phase of what I’ll call “core innovation” is coming up. What does ActionScript 4 look like? What direction do our tools move in? How should we evolve the Flex Framework? These are both geeky, nitty gritty questions as well as larger philosophical questions.
To me, there is no better group than the one we have and no better place to disconnect and think about larger issues concerning Flash Platform developers. We’re not going to have all of the answers, but I think RIAdventure is going to be an ideal venue in which to make your voice heard, hear what others want to see, and make your own opinions heard. Oh, and have a crap-ton of fun while you’re at it.