Get Buzzed!

It’s been a harsh winter in Toronto this year (although this week has been very mild), and since I could never bring myself to wear a toque (Canadian for winter hat) lest it ruin my hair, I decided to buzz it off a couple of weeks back.

Ok, so maybe not the best segue to talk about Buzzword, by far the best online word processor on the planet, but you’ll just have to forgive me. Naturally, this stunning Rich Internet Application (RIA) was developed using Flex (by a small startup called Virtual Ubiquity, one of the original recipients of funding from Adobe’s $100 million venture capital fund announced at MAX 2006). Fast forward to MAX 2007 last October, and we had Adobe announce that it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire Virtual Ubiquity. Yay for us!

I think this acquisition could prove to be a game-changer for Adobe as it dives deeper into the ‘knowledge worker’ market, currently dominated by Microsoft. Not an easy task, but considering the sheer size of this market, it’s certainly worth the old college try. Plus, the trend of people increasingly making use of online applications in favour of desktop applications (I’m thinking of Facebook here) bodes well for RIAs as a whole.

To actually get to my point: if you haven’t already, try Buzzword today. I think you’ll be amazed! Aside from the brilliant interface, one of the things I really like about Buzzword is that it is truly a collaborative authoring workspace.

And while you’re here, check out SlideRocket, a Flex-based RIA for building presentations. Now, if somebody can just develop an Excel-like RIA, I think we’ve got a little suite on our hands. :)