New Developments at Adobe – CS4 is Released

One of the best articles on web development I have read lately is an interview with Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch at eWeek. Since merging with Macromedia, Adobe has continued to release new software and innovations at a rate that is difficult for most designers to keep up with. The interview covers subjects ranging from Adobe’s main product line, competition with Google & Microsoft, and Open Source development related to the company’s services. Lynch speaks at length about Adobe Air and the advances it is enabling in cloud computing, as well as a new product named Thermo, which looks to make user interface design more creative and simple. The full text of the interview can be found on eWeek.

Adobe Creative Suite – CS4:

Lynch calls CS4 “the biggest software release we’ve done in our history of 25 years in business.” The package brings together all of Adobe’s core software packages: Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Flash, InDesign, Premier, Illustrator, Fireworks, AfterEffects, Acrobat, Encore, SoundBooth, and many others, packaging them in various suites for office, development, and production studios. They have also included more tools designed to assist those who are working collaboratively in distributed offices on the web, as well as for the development and testing of mobile applications. Adobe CS4 is scheduled to be released next month to the public.

A number of videos are available at AdobeTV with extensive overviews of the features.

Adobe CS4 is priced in distribution packages ranging from $999 to $2499. Full details on the release can be found on the Adobe website.

Adobe Flash:

The beta version of Flash Player 10, code-named “Astro,” has been released, and with CS4 you can now combine integrated filter effects from AfterEffects, 3-D design that is synched with new features in Photoshop, and advanced text editing that comes from InDesign. The new version routes more processing to the PC’s video card to increase performance and provide better display of graphics, 3-D, and video. There are also features which allow for sound mixing in ActionScript applications and audio filtering.

More Information & Download Flash “Astro” – Beta 10.

Adobe AIR:

Adobe Integrated Runtime (AIR) was released earlier this year, allowing developers to code standalone desktop and rich internet applications that deploy across multiple browsers and operating systems fusing HTML, JavaScript, ActionScript, Flash, and other languages in a single framework. Adobe’s main focus in cloud computing, the applications have the advantage of being able to be saved locally and run even when the computer is not connected to the internet. The platform uses digital signatures to protect users from harmful code. The SDK is free.

Examples of Sites Built with Adobe Air:

eBay Desktop:
http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/showcase/index.cfm?event=casestudydetail&casestudyid=383833&loc=en_us

AOL Top 100 Videos:
http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/showcase/index.cfm?event=casestudydetail&casestudyid=383991&loc=en_us

More Examples:
http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/exchange/index.cfm?event=productHome&exc=24&loc=en_us

Adobe Flex:

The Flex SDK is one of Adobe’s main Open Source offerings, “a highly productive, open source framework for building and maintaining expressive web applications that deploy consistently on all major browsers, desktops and operating systems. It provides a modern, standards-based language and programming model that supports common design patterns suitable for developers from many backgrounds. Flex applications run in the ubiquitous Adobe® Flash® Player and Adobe® AIR™.1

Download the Flex SDK: http://opensource.adobe.com/wiki/display/flexsdk/Downloads

Adobe Tamarin:

Adobe developed Tamarin as an ActionScript / JavaScript compiler and virtual machine for Flash 9, and then released the entire code base under an Open Source license to the Mozilla / Firefox project. According to the Tamarin project page:

“The goal of the ‘Tamarin’ project is to implement a high-performance, open source implementation of the ECMAScript 4th edition (ES4) language specification. The Tamarin virtual machine will be used by Mozilla within SpiderMonkey, the core JavaScript engine embedded in Firefox®, and other products based on Mozilla technology. The code will continue to be used by Adobe as part of the ActionScript™ Virtual Machine within Adobe® Flash® Player.2

Review: http://hecker.org/mozilla/adobe-mozilla-and-tamarin

Adobe Thermo:

From the Interview with Kevin Lynch, Adobe CTO:

“We’re also working on a new project that’s code-named Thermo. And Thermo is a way to enable designers to build rich Internet applications… So with Thermo we’re enabling you to take your visual assets that you’ve drawn in a creative tool like Photoshop and you can actually select the items that you drew in Photoshop and you can turn them into interactive items just by clicking on an item and saying ‘make this a button’ or ‘make this a scroll bar.’ And it will take the illustration and turn it into a working component. That’s really incredible. And it’s a huge innovation to enable designers to create the interactivity and the logic of the application by converting their artwork into components and then wiring them together. And you’re able to connect those components through drag-and-drop. So without writing any code, you’re able to create the interactivity of your application.”

More Information about adobe Thermo + Screenshots at Adobe Labs:
http://labs.adobe.com/wiki/index.php/Thermo

Read the Full Interview at:
http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Application-Development/Adobe-Talks-Open-Source-Innovation-and-the-Future-of-Flash/

  1. http://opensource.adobe.com/wiki/display/flexsdk/About []
  2. http://www.mozilla.org/projects/tamarin/ []

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5 thoughts on “New Developments at Adobe – CS4 is Released”

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