Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Adobe Refresh Sydney

Having missed the keynote address, I wasn't really sure what Adobe had planned for this year's Refresh. Paul Burnett's first session on Extending PDFs with Flash was way more interesting than it sounded. Basically anything you can create in Flash can be embedded in a PDF assuming that you don't require a backend database for the flash to work. There are heaps of existing flash widgets including RSS feeds, calculators, date pickers and other goodies that can extend your PDF into something really useful, collaborative and interactive. Integration of video, google maps and external files present endless possibilities for what can be shared online.
However, the edge-of-the-seat goodness came with the CS5 sneak peaks. Due for release later this year (the actual date is still a hot topic of debate in the forums) the big ticket item is likely to be the Flash iPhone capability. With a flexible compiler that understands ActionScript 3 and can publish native iPhone applications and loads of iPhone plugins for FireWorks, creating apps looked pretty easy to this designer. Flash is shaping up to be the jewel in Adobe's crown, and with support from Device Central for testing all your multi device projects, the iPad will also be a logical channel.
We finished up with a tantalising look at the mysterious Adobe Rome, written in Flex and delivering a strange mashup of photo editing, animation and web editing delivered via a beautiful and innovative user interface - the audience was left wondering whether the program would ever get commercial release. You won't find out a thing about it on Adobe's official site and we were warned to put away our phones and cameras before they unveiled it. Hopefully it won't end up on the R&D scrap heap.

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