March 18, 2007 9:01 PM PDT

Adobe offers early peek at Apollo

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Adobe Systems on Monday released an early version of Apollo, software that will let people run Web applications online and offline.

The first release is an "alpha" version, with a beta due sometime this summer. Version 1.0 is planned for the second half of this year.

The early version of Apollo is aimed primarily at Web designers and programmers. The free download will include a software development kit and the "runtime" software for running Apollo applications.

Apollo is designed to bridge the world of Web applications and desktop computers. Applications written for Apollo function like normal Web applications but act like locally installed software. For example, Apollo applications will have an icon that shows up on a computer desktop and will be able to automatically reconnect when a computer gets online.

"This is a great runtime environment for (Web) applications...that are used more frequently or where people want more interaction with local data," said Kevin Lynch, chief software architect and senior vice president of Adobe's platform business unit.

Once the software is made more widely available, users can download a runtime to their desktop PCs to run Apollo applications, much like people need a Flash Player to run Flash Web animations.

The release of the software is highly anticipated among people who develop so-called rich Internet applications, meaning Web applications that have some of the interactivity of traditional desktop applications.

There are a growing number of alternatives for building cross-platform rich Internet applications, including Adobe's Flash, Ajax, Microsoft's Windows Presentation Foundation/Everywhere and OpenLaszlo.

The alpha download of Apollo will run on Windows and Macintosh. It will allow people to use HTML, JavaScript and Flash programming and display Adobe's PDF format. An edition for Linux is also planned after the Windows and Mac versions.

Lynch noted that Adobe's upcoming Creative Suite 3, slated for release later this month, will also allow people to create Apollo content because Adobe has created more integration between applications such as Illustrator and its Dreamweaver Web development program.

See more CNET content tagged:
Kevin Lynch, Web application, Adobe Systems Inc., Web development, desktop computer


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That loud noise...
Is Steve Ballmer throwing another chair against the wall as he sees
the Windows Presentation technology become irrelevent.

Who's going to go with Microsoft when you can work with Flash/
PDF to make rich web applications with Windows/Mac/Linux?

Answer: Nobody in their right mind.
Posted by ewelch (767 comments )
Reply Link Flag
...well, sort of. It might be Java too.

Considering the bloated bug-ridden current state of Adobe's products, I will stick to other proven techs for now, whether it be MS of Java.
Posted by adlyb1 (123 comments )
Link Flag
What an ignoramus
Obviously, you don't know what's currently being developed on the WPF, otherwise you wouldn't be saying this.
Posted by WJeansonne (480 comments )
Link Flag
Welcome Apollo!
Welcome Apollo! With Microsoft's WPF, Lazalo and advent of Java based Desktop Platform - Dekoh, race to win RIA territory getting hotter and hotter day by day as Dekoh and Apollo offer their releases.

Let's see answers to questions like, browser freedom, support for web 2.0, ease to use, deploy, and develop etc.
Posted by mayankmishra (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Ummm Alpha version should be self explanatory
Hi Mishra, your point is well taken, however did you know that Alpha version is even before the Beta release which sort of precedes ease of use (btw and not ease to use...), etc etc. Those are all terribly important, however unless there are scores of users such as yourself that can give it the ultimate test and feedback, how do you think a final version gets developed? I am absolutely THRILLED to hear of this software in the works and cannot wait to see this being used. THANK YOU ADOBE for being such an innovative software company!
Posted by artyinusa (2 comments )
Link Flag
Welcome to another security nightmare
And how is this different from Java which the author evidently took great care *not* to mention?
Posted by fcekuahd (244 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Yep, and we don't need another proprietary web technology
I'd rather see HTML, DHTML, CSS, AJAX, and Java continue to evolve to support rich web apps.

I don't have Flash player installed and I have no interest in yet another plugin.
Posted by mn39202 (32 comments )
Link Flag
Not Java
It combines PDF and Flash and other technologies. So it's nothing
like Java.
Posted by ewelch (767 comments )
Link Flag
How much code runs client side, how much server?
I write most of my code with PHP/SQL. If I needed to add client side execution I would just put in some Java.

The only place I could see this being useful is if it lets the server and the client talk without refreshing the page.

Please note that I am writing online database applications. I would assume that people who are writing online games might get more use from this.
Posted by ralfthedog (1589 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I only have one thing to say
Weblications are the future.
Posted by t8 (3716 comments )
Reply Link Flag
So are open standards.
Posted by Hardrada (359 comments )
Link Flag
I have been a bog fan of AIR from alpha and I am assuming that Apollo is a super version of the AIR concept

Sadly, I have only had the opportunity to do one AIR application for a client and it was a great project. You can do very clever things with a bit of determination and smart code

I have seen AIR as an early sign of where web developers and web development companies need to be looking at. The offline / online is going to become very important. Think cloud for when data needs to be pulled in and desktop for when data needs to be local and for funcionality. AFter all, why go to a server when the same functionality is used.

I can see the local data needs as the driver here. As businesses look to have more sensitive data within a cloud, they will want to keep more and more local.

So, my tip, and I could be wrong, is that Apollo will be a big part of the web development space going forward

Jimi Bostock
PUSH Agency
Brisbane | Canberra | Sydney | Australia
Posted by JimiBostock (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag

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