MX targets Web services

Macromedia has consolidated a number of tools and updated its ColdFusion server to help Web designers create Web services.

Macromedia has consolidated a number of tools and updated its ColdFusion server to help Web designers create Web services.

The company is pulling UltraDev, HomeSite, and ColdFusion Studio into Dreamweaver, and calling the conglomeration Dreamweaver MX. Flash MX will remain a stand alone product. Macromedia also will offer ColdFusion MX, a scripting server that is tightly integrated with Flash and Dreamweaver MX.

"We now offer a development environment for building HTML pages, writing code, hand-coding, developing server-side logic, and authoring dynamic content," said Kevin Lynch, chief software architect at Macromedia.

Furthermore, Macromedia is looking to enhance Web services by enabling client interfaces to take advantage of local processing power and to hook into back-end servers.

"ColdFusion makes Web services a consistent experience across the .net and J2EE environments" Lynch said.

The offerings will enable developers to pull content from outside sites and integrate it into their own Web services or sites, said Neal Goldman, an analyst at The Yankee Group.

"Previous solutions for integrating content were either not elegant or not feasible, whereas with Web services it is feasible," Goldman said, adding that the company needed to support Web services to keep pace with the market. "Macromedia can't be an island. IT has to be open to other companies' products and interoperate with them."

John Policano, a Web designer at Arnold Interactive, said that by enabling its products to interact more effectively with outside software, Macromedia is making designers more productive within certain environments. "If I can use a suite of products that allows me to interact with multiple servers and services, it makes my life a lot easier," Policano said.

Macromedia is pooling several Web development products and rechristening them MX.

  • Dreamweaver MX: Consists of Dreamweaver, UltraDev, HomeSite, and ColdFusion Studio

  • Flash MX: Formerly Flash

  • ColdFusion MX: Scripting server that was Allaire's ColdFusion app server, code named Neo

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