Digital Editions is not an Apollo Application

We launched a new project on labs the other day called Digital Editions. What is Digital Editions? From the site:

Adobe Digital Editions is a completely new way to read and manage eBooks and other digital publications. Digital Editions is built from the ground up as a lightweight, rich Internet application (RIA). Digital Editions works online and offline, and supports both PDF and XHTML-based content.

Basically, this is (currently) a Windows only executable that integrates Flash and PDF to create a rich application for reading eBooks. Really cool stuff.

There seems to be a lot of questions and confusion over whether this is an Apollo application. It is NOT an Apollo application (The fact that it is currently Windows only should be a tip off). This is covered in the FAQ, but I wanted to make a post to help clear up some of the confusion.

You can find more information on Digital Editions here.

You can find more information on Apollo here.

12 Responses to Digital Editions is not an Apollo Application

  1. Nicolas says:

    So based on the fact that Digital editions is just a windows executable, one could understand that you’re not only limited to installing apollo applications from within the browser using flash player 9 …

  2. Ryan Guill says:

    But it would be accurate to say that Digital Editions is built using flex though, correct?

  3. Ryan Stewart says:

    Hey Ryan, yeah DE is built using Flex for most of the UI elements.

  4. Brent McCallister says:

    By a mere drawing of straws, I’ve been appointed as Consular for my peers and colleagues in Southern California reacting to “yet another” Windows exclusive Adobe development. We decided who better to share our views with than the Adobe Ambassador of Developer Relations. For what it’s worth, we sincerely hope you’ll add our grievances to your comment box and justly consider raising all such submissions in any meetings or matters of affiliated appraisals.While not a developer tool in and of itself, DE is yet another example of Adobe’s propensity to pander. Neglect is an increasingly notable Adobe hallmark. The glaring trait responsible for a steady erosion of positive developer mind share. This commitment to willful negligence, a pledge to undermine harmony, is responsible for the waning respect and regard for Adobe among some developer circles.Over the last month alone, I’ve encountered two negative, baited references to Adobe here in the San Diego area developer communities; one of which I heard twice, in two separate circles. The first was at a MacZealot gathering, where Adobe was commonly referred to by many as “Tom Tom,” which I later found out was representative of “The Other Microsoft” (considered an insult in many a Mac circle). And the other reference I’m finding more common than the latter, is “YADOBE”. I heard it first at a local SD-WebTech meetup, and later from an actual client of ours, who was rather adamant about sidestepping all “YADOBE” solutions. I’ve asked around and received a couple different explanations for the acronym, these are the two I’ve come by:• Yet Another Development Offering Blatant Exclusion• Yet Another Development Of Biased EngineeringDigital Editions is YADOBE. And it’s not alone.While security, stability, user experience, design, and intelligence may be low on the totem pole for many average computer users, when it comes to a multitude of developers, these attributes are far from lost. Hence, the growing numbers of Engineers utilizing OS X as an elegant, and powerful development tool.As far as George Gallup is concerned, the masses boot Redmond Rubbish as the sand upon which they run their applications (largely due to the intrinsic ignorance of “L&L” [lemminghood & lockout]). As a professional community, some of us are at a loss as to why the integrity of available Adobe development tools should suffer the fate of some of our builds.The current saturation of this aging cognitive heist won’t hold forever. When you neglect the developer, you undercut the end user. Less-sharp tools will eventually result in less-sharp products. There exists a sizable cognitive dissonance between Adobe’s propensity for touting their “understanding” of the harmonious, symbiotic relationship between open and closed technologies, and the way in which they carry out their strategies. An incongruous reality for a company that has solutions woven so considerably from Java fabric.While our boutique still advises Adobe solutions when the problem is so fit, we’d certainly be amiss if we failed to comment on the noticeable rancor beginning to manifest itself in some circles. While some of it possibly whimsical pie throwing, we find some of the claims very valid, and should similar Adobe trends continue, I know there’s definite possibility in us dropping Adobe solutions from our menu.We’ve already had to jump through a number of hoops to be able to produce high end Adobe solutions to clients via our Mac-based development environment. We love our machines, we love what we do, and in no way will we subject our equipment or our work to the countless dilapidations Windows injects into every environment; from technical havoc to unintelligent paradigms, the results of which have so insidiously inspired legions of obtuse solutions.Due to security, unmatched quality, intelligence, design, gracefully intrinsic and harmonious open source effectuation, gorgeous yet humble integration of proprietary solutions, brilliant frameworks and APIs, ad infinitum, should Adobe continue to nurture a plan that will increasingly ostracize Mac-based developers,Thanks for hearing us out on your forum Mike.

  5. Rily says:

    It is definitely an Apollo app. There is no way to create this using the standard flash player.Apollo can load pdf files and current flash player cannot.

  6. mike chambers says:

    –So based on the fact that Digital editions is just a windows executable, one could understand that you’re not only limited to installing apollo applications from within the browser using flash player 9 …–You will be able to install apollo applications in a number of ways, including from the browser, as well as via native installers, and cross platform Apollo installer files (air).More info in the FAQ at:

  7. mike chambers says:

    –By a mere drawing of straws, I’ve been appointed as Consular for my peers and colleagues in Southern California reacting to “yet another” Windows exclusive Adobe development.–Brent, I have forwarded your comments internally.Also, make sure to check out the DE Faq, where Mac support is discussed:

  8. mike chambers says:

    –It is definitely an Apollo app. There is no way to create this using the standard flash player.Apollo can load pdf files and current flash player cannot.–No. As my post stated, Digital Editions is not an Apollo application.Digital is a custom executable created by a team at Adobe.Apollo is a runtime, not an exe or projector creator. More info on Apollo at:, it may not be clear from my post, but I am on the Apollo team).mike

  9. Josh says:

    As a San Diego-based developer, I will state that Brent’s sentiments do not permeate the entirety of the region. While I wish that Adobe would attempt to release their products for all platforms simultaneously more often, I understand why sometimes lesser-used platforms like Linux get pushed back a bit.One thing I find interesting is that Brent seems to believe that Adobe has begun specifically ignoring non-Windows platforms. I imagine that this has to do with things like the fact that Intel-based Macs don’t have a native version of Creative Suite yet, or closer to my heart, the Mac Flex Builder beta was only just recently released (several months after the Windows version went final). I know that Adobe has commented on the CS issues, though I don’t remember where. I believe Mike here, or perhaps a Flex team member, mentioned that Eclipse had some issues on Macs that couldn’t be resolved quickly. They would rather get the tools in the hands of some developers than wait this long.Most interestingly, and running completely opposite to Brent’s claims, please note that the Adobe Lightroom beta was released on Labs for Macs well before the Windows beta. In fact, I think a couple versions were released before Windows support made it to our hands.I feel for Brent’s frustration over the occasional lack of platform support, but his post mostly consisted of threats and elitist language. I touched on a couple issues that I could only guess at which he might be hinting. Though I didn’t provide specific links to back up the points I made, I’m certainly willing to find them if needed.

  10. The DE Add-In installs a special Flash Player, per the FAQ.My player version comes back as 9,0,18,60. I originally had the beta FP installed ( so I assume DE overrode that player.So what features did the special FP (9,0,18,60) include?FAQ says – “includes PDF and XHTML-based document viewing and local file management capabilities.”This sounds a lot like Apollo, I am confused. I know its not the Apollo framework but its a specialized player that is a lot like Apollo?

  11. Scott says:

    [While not a developer tool in and of itself, DE is yet another example of Adobe’s propensity to pander. Neglect is an increasingly notable Adobe hallmark.]I’m stuck developing on a Windows machine due to the company I work for, but I understand Brent’s discontentment with Adobe. Outside of work I do everything on my MacBook, including take-home work as well as solo development projects, so suffice it to say I feel your pain. Not to worry Brent, you’re not missing out on much with DE.Your comment on the insidious nature of the Windows-based paradigms which creep into so many software products created by win-based developers rung loud and clear, I know exactly what you are talking about. I can’t begin to count how many analysis and design sessions I’ve been in where “Redmond-conditioned” engineers spew forth so much of the same old lifeless models that fail to evolve existing solutions. They’re trapped, and can’t see what so many a Mac user experiences every day. In addition to bloated code, there seems to be an incredible lack of understanding in regards to the user-experience across the board.There is a trend, and it transcends disciplines, and goes beyond the Creative Suite and includes parts of the Acrobat family, Premiere, and many other packages that have never and will never be available for Mac. As far as LightRoom is concerned, the reason for that rapid response of hallmark pandering (again, you were right on that) can be summed up with one word: Aperture. To no one’s surprise Aperture is gorgeous, and trumps LightRoom in nearly every category. Photoshop is king, but not because it’s the best photo editing program possible, it’s simply grown to be the standard, hence its prominence, as well as the reason Apple held back some features from Aperture. I know many image professionals that actually wish Adobe would pull Photoshop out of the Mac market as word has it that such is the only way Apple will releast their own top-secret image editing application. If such an app exists and sports even half the brilliance of other Apple Pro apps, it would be beautifully powerful I have no doubt.Should you ever have the opportunity, try Audition and compare it to Soundtrack Pro (or even more, to Logic), or Premiere next to Final Cut; it’s a safe bet any disillusionment pertaining to Apple Pro apps in comparison to Adobe solutions will be quickly dispelled. The icing on the cake is Adobe Bridge, I know more creative professionals that loathe that hub, dubbing it the clumsiest, resource-intensive, bulky, “too in the way” workflow management tool (paradigm) possible.Also, consider the up and coming generations of developers and digital artisans; I teach guitar on weekends and more than one student of mine is an aspiring developer who are strictly Mac-based. While older generations have played the ignorance card when it comes to the allowance of Redmond proliferation, younger generations are not afraid of technology, and they know swill when they see it. To ignore Mac users, is to ignore future generations.If it’s any consolation, pay attention to how many sophisticated Apple traits Adobe shamelessly “borrows” and know that it is to be sure that Adobe is most definitely still aware of Apple’s existence. Yes Apple has it’s moments when they deliver a proverbial hockey puck mouse, but overall they’re batting close to 1000, which deserves tolerance for such imperfections. While so many others relagate us to the cluttered, shoddy worlds of “in the browser” web experiences, Apple brings us a focused, top tier media experience outside the cluttered browser experience. I hope Apollo falls into hands that will bring us similar quality experiences.Lastly, a big pat on the back to Mike Chambers for forwarding Brent’s post internally, Adobe should be very grateful for such a fair and dedicated product manager. One of the great things about Apple is their ability to go beyond the extra mile when it comes to listening to user feedback, feature requests, etc: it’s great to see Mike doing the same. Platinum Apple goes to Mike C. thanks for hearing the voices of the little people too.Looking forward to the Apollo rundown tomorrow Mike.(Re; Josh > The appreciation of superior quality is anything but elitest)-Scott

  12. Sam Tilston says:

    Is it safe to install the app through your browser??