Feeds

Microsoft should get serious on Moonlight

The way to Adobe's heart

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Web bling tone Adobe Systems' chief financial officer Mark Garrett has said Silverlight is fizzling. Microsoft's director of client platform evangelism Tim Sneath has said it's fizzing. So the RIA war continues.

One intriguing element is that both Flash and Silverlight have an open-source aspect. Adobe's efforts include publishing the SWF file format, the Tamarin scripting engine, the Action Message Format (AMF) protocol specification, and the Flex SDK, for compiling XML and ActionScript to SWF. The Flash player and multimedia codecs are not open source, and this is unlikely to change.

Open source is not the same as open, collaborative development, a distinction that was exposed when the Flex development community protested about a feature of the forthcoming 4.0 release of the SDK. Adobe had announced that controls such as buttons would be disambiguated by a new Fx prefix, so <button> would be an old button, and <FxButton> a new one.

The community rebelled, observing that this is what XML namespaces are for, and expressing dissatisfaction not only with the decision but also with the entire development process.

Flex developer Simeon Batemen said: "Right now, I don't feel we get any voice. And while Adobe has committed to opening up this process, how do make this change a priority for them? Every day decisions are being made behind closed doors... What kind of action is required to make Adobe's top priority making good on the promise of an open-source framework?"

A petition was launched, forks threatened, and a hasty online meeting convened.

Structural challenge

Last week, Adobe backed down. Flex product manager Matt Chotin said: "We will plan on removing the Fx prefix and implementing the multiple namespace solution". It is a defining moment for Adobe and open source, yet the structural truth which caused this incident - that Adobe alone decides the content and direction of its products - remains.

This is a thought to ponder as Adobe continues to promote its Open Screen Project, which arguably should be called the Flash Screen Project, aimed at bringing the Flash runtime to multiple devices. At last week's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Adobe announced Palm as a new member, forming an alliance whose most notable absentee is Apple.

Microsoft will no doubt do its own thing with Silverlight mobile, but that does not prevent Windows Mobile vendors from installing Flash. Adobe also announced the Flash distributable player and Mobile Packager though only a limited number of Windows Mobile and Nokia S60 devices are currently supported.

The idea is that you can both install applications and update the runtime over the air. The focus is currently on multimedia and games, but it will also be an alternative to Java for cross-platform mobile applications.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search
Microsoft system will be the default for browser in US until 2020
Be real, Apple: In-app goodie grab games AREN'T FREE – EU
Cupertino stands down after Euro legal threats
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
How to simplify SSL certificate management
Simple steps to take control of SSL certificates across the enterprise, and recommendations centralizing certificate management throughout their lifecycle.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.