Adobe tool simplifies rich internet app development

Adobe has developed a cross-platform tool designed to simplify enterprise software development.

Adobe has developed a cross-platform tool designed to simplify enterprise software development.

The product, called Apollo, is part of Adobe's strategy to provide technologies and product workflows for developers and designers to create rich internet applications (RIAs).

Michael Azoff, senior research analyst at Butler Group, said Apollo enabled end-user applications that link to back-end servers to be built using Javascript, HTML, Ajax and Adobe's Flash and Flex tools.

"Previously, developers would have chosen Java or .net to build such applications. It would be much easier to build using Adobe," he said.

Apollo is designed to enable developers to build internet applications that do not require the end-user to use a web browser, giving the look and feel of desktop applications.

With Apollo, Adobe said end-users would be able to launch applications directly from their desktops and interact with them offline.

As well as enabling people with web development skills to incorporate enterprise functionality into applications, Apollo allows the applications to work when no internet connection is available.

The product is designed such that when a network connection is available, newly created or changed content can seamlessly synchronise with back-end servers.

In upcoming versions, Apollo's integration with the desktop will allow people to drag and drop items, such as image files and other media assets, directly into Apollo applications, Adobe said.

"RIAs have become a core element of today's web computing experience. We are working to bridge the chasm between the web and the personal computer," said Kevin Lynch, senior vice-president and chief software architect at Adobe.

The alpha version of the Apollo application runtime, required to run Apollo applications, and the Apollo SDK can be downloaded for free from Adobe Labs.

There are versions of the tool for both Windows and Macintosh operating systems.

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