Archive for October, 2007

So What’s Happening Next with Cairngorm

So with MAX 2007 Chicago behind me, and MAX 2007 Barcelona ahead, I’d like to put out some brief notes on our plans and intentions for Cairngorm.

Let’s start with clearing up some uncertainties. In our Adobe Consulting Birds of a Feather, we played a few games with the audience to warm things up, including a game where 3 consultants would make a statement each on a topic, only one of which was true, and the audience had to correctly guess which one was true.

So the two lies about Cairngorm were that “we’re building a lightweight version of Hibernate for AIR, and because it’s lighter than hibernation, we’re going to call it Slumber”. That was a lie. And we also said we were going to rename “Cairngorm” to “Mount McKinley” so people would stop complaining about how to pronounce it. But that was a lie as well. So neither of these 2 things are fact :)

We’ve pushed the changes we pushed out as beta through to Adobe Labs, as you saw on Alistair McLeods blog. So that’s now the stable version of Cairngorm for you to develop against.

I want to be very clear, in case it hasn’t been – if you are continuing to build RIA with Flex and Cairngorm, and these RIA are front-ends upon Service Oriented Architectures, where you are invoking services and handling their responses – whether that be RemoteObject, WebService or HTTPService – then the current microarchitecture remains our advocated architecture for you. We have no intention of changing that in a future version of Cairngorm, so please don’t hold out waiting for anything else because you think there might be big change a comin’. There’s not.

However, we’ve been doing a LOT of deep-thinking around data oriented architectures, which are the kind of architectures that evolve as you begin to leverage LiveCycle Data Services, in particular the data management features of LCDS. Peter Martin presented a deep-dive into that current thinking – and as he preluded his presentation with, we aspire to solidifying this thinking into repeatable best-practice that we can bake back into Cairngorm. However, right now our thinking is strategy and architecture as much as it is reusable classes that we’ll bake into Cairngorm. Alistair McLeod is going to give this presentation in Barcelona, and we’ll be opening up discussion online as well about some of our thinking, and we look to compare our data points with many of yours before we bake this into Cairngorm. What I do see happening however, is that Cairngorm Enterprise will evolve to include best-practices for data oriented archtiectures as well as the current best-practices we advocate – and will continue to advocate – for more service oriented architectures.

Exciting stuff.

We also care a great deal about making Cairngorm developers more productive; we plan on sharing some work that we have been doing around Eclipse plug-ins to increase your productivity, but it’s early days yet and we’ve not had the bandwidth we hoped for to drive this into the community. Hold tight, but it’s coming!

If you’re going to be in Barcelona, please drop by and say hi – I’ll be giving my talk on Design Led Innovation again, which I really enjoyed delivering in Chicago. It’s easy to get into the details of architecture and design patterns, but it’s also nice to pull up to 35,000 feet from time to time, and remember that our job is to “build THINGS that PEOPLE will USE” (to paraphrase my colleague, Simon Smith, who leads Adobe Consulting’s User Experience practice. I’ll also be presenting in the Flex Best Practices panel.

Hope to see you in Spain…

Adobe Consulting needs U(X) and U(Tech)

My subject lines get worse.

So I’m going to wait until after MAX Barcelona before I post any summary of the MAX conferences – and I’m taking a week off after Barcelona to recover! But suffice to say, it’s incredibly fun times right now, and MAX Chicago was testament to the cutting edge we’re all slicing and dicing with right now!

But before I head over to Spain, I wanted to draw attention to a blog post that my colleague Simon Smith has made. Simon is one of my partners in crime at Adobe Consulting, leading our User Experience practice on a global basis. One of the most exciting things for me joining Macromedia and then Adobe, was the opportunity to work alongside such a great bunch of critical thinkers, information architects and user-experience designers on our consulting projects. As well as my own team hiring in the technology practice, Simon’s team have jobs open on a worldwide basis – check his Designers Wanted blog post and then drop us an email, or come and say hi to me in the weeks ahead.

Likewise, if you want to cut code on “either side of the glass” with Adobe Consulting in the technology practice that I lead, then I’d personally like to hear from you as well. We’re definitely at an inflection point in the industry, and if you have what it takes to take us to the next one then you know where to find me.