New Adobe tool allows developers to make a single app for different platforms

adobe-airA new Adobe tool in Adobe Air could revolutionize the way developers produce applications.

Developers are able to build a single code-base for a single application, and utilize the tool to essentially convert the application to run on multiple operating systems (including mobile operating systems) that support Adobe Flash. No additional code needs to be changed to support the different platforms.

Adobe says the tool is the first of its kind, and no other technology currently allows developers to maintain the same code-base without any modifications to the initial code to run on a variety of platforms.

 The core app code is contained within the action script, the tool then instantiates a new app and adds it to the display list to have a platform specific configuration, according to the Adobe programmer, Christian Cantrell, in the embedded video.

Despite no changes to the code-base, the outputted application is not the same that runs across the different platforms.

The tool is currently able to seamlessly output applications to run on Windows, Mac, Linux, Apple iOS powered devices, including the iPad, and even within an Internet browser.

The single code-base apps were also showcased on a Google Android powered Motorola Droid smartphone.

The tool automatically scales applications to work optimally with different aspect ratios and pixel densities with different device screen sizes.

Adobe says it will soon provide specific documentation so that developers could begin to write their own cross-platform multi-screen applications, in what appears to be a very time saving and seamless experience.

The implications of this technology could have a significant impact, especially in the mobile space.

For example, the BlackBerry platform has recently lagged behind other operating systems, like Apple’s iOS, when it comes to the quality and variety of applications available.

Arguably, the strong demand for Apple’s iPhone 4 is propelled by a strong consumer demand for the availability of many quality applications that add to the overall user experience.

The latest technology by Adobe could see many quality applications developed for one platform, say an iOS device, to be ported to the BlackBerry platform, bringing additional quality applications to the BlackBerry, among additional other platforms.

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Murad is an engineering graduate from Centennial college in Toronto, Canada. Write to [email protected]
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  • Darren

    Very interesting article, thanks for sharing! When and where will the guide to developing with this software be released?

  • Joe

    good for mobile devices where a browser isn’t the best medium to deploy applications on to. Not much use for desktops where the browser rules.

    • Alistair Nicholson

      What did you see as the drawbacks with the browser app he demo’ed? It looked OK to me, but it sounds like you saw an aspect I missed.

  • Anonymous

    Awwwsome. It’s like CryEngine 3 Multiplatform game Dev. But in AS3 form The sexiness is just too much!!

  • Bandwidth Bandito

    So java is chopped liver??

  • Shmoz

    from what i see, Steve Jobs is very wrong….Adobe is being innovative and the Flash platform is now far more relevant, as far as I’m concerned.

    Just think of the time/cost savings, everyone is gonna adopt it as the most important platforms already support it anyway.

  • Anonymous

    Anyone know if this will work on the new Windows Phone 7 devices? Guess it would be easy to implement (as works like a browser) but would MS allow it (although it would make their possible app shortage less of an issue…).

    maybe thats what the big announcement will be on October 5th

  • z3r0

    “Adobe says the tool is the first of its kind, and no other technology currently allows developers to maintain the same code-base without any modifications to the initial code to run on a variety of platforms.”

    Its a copy of Java, like other copies:


    Mono .Net

    Parrot VM

    Titanium Appcelerator

    Now if only everyone would just build it on LLVM

    • 0n3

      No z3r0, they (including Java) are copies of UCSD Pascal.

      The compiled bytecode (called “P Code”) ran on an OS (“P System”) which was ported to different platforms – e.g. Apple ][ and IBM PC, and that’s where James Gosling got the idea for the Java VM.

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