The Open Screen Project, Flash 3D and other Highlights from Adobe Max 2010

Open Screen Project

Adobe Open-Screen Project

Open Screen Project

 “Adobe is spearheading the Open Screen Project™ with support from industry leaders who share a common vision to provide rich interactive experiences across computers, devices, and consumer electronics.  A consistent, more open platform for developers will drive rapid innovation; vastly improving the user experience.” Shantanu Narayen, chief executive officer at Adobe.

 Thanks to the OpenScreen Project, Adobe and other industry leaders are focusing heavily on its Multiscreen developments. Since Version 10.1, the Flash Plug-in has already been deployed on a large number of devices and operating systems, from personal computers to smart phones. This deployment is constantly growing, with the aim of creating a consistent runtime environment for the entire Flash platform. With Flash plug-ins on all major operating systems, and with Adobe AIR 2.5 deploying applications on smart phones, computers, tablets and even TV’s, Adobe products are leading the way.

The new Flex SDK (codename Hero) will allow developers to use the Spark system to create mobile applications with different user interfaces, without changing their code. With the iPhone, Android and other mobile operating systems offering widely varied experiences and interfaces, this is sure to be of interest to those involved in UX!

3D News

It’s impossible to have not noticed the 3D revolution over the past 2 years - Blue Ray 3D, 3D television requiring 3D glasses, and now standalone 3D TV’s and the Nintendo 3DS game system. These developments have proved to be very hit and miss, with some presenting 3D capabilities as little more than a marketing gimmick, and often at the expense of other features and attributes.

Since the release of Flash Player 10, Adobe has been looking to add a third dimension to motion design and interfaces. The first step was the addition of a z-axis in a 2D Flash environment. Now Adobe is working to provide real 3D with superior performance, which will allow developers to run 3D games and objects. Adobe is working closely with major Flash 3D frameworks teams in order to improve existing independent solutions (Away 3D, etc.) with the new Flash Player instructions. I’m hoping Adobe’s attempt will prove to be truly successful at adding a third dimension to the web, where up until now, others have fallen short.

Flash Catalyst

As a developer, it’s great to know that Adobe has been listening to our feedback on Flash Catalyst, as we are now able to really improve the workflow between user experience, designers and developers. A Flex developer can now import a Flash Catalyst Project, add custom classes and then export it for the UX and designer to use in the Flash Catalyst interface. Catalyst’s generated code has also been improved and doesn’t need to be reorganized by the Flex developer who’s importing the project.


Like all other elements of the Flash platform, LiveCycle is looking at mobile usage and Multiscreen concerns. In LiveCycle Enterprise Suite 2.5, this change of focus can be seen immediately, with better support for mobile and Multiscreen. However for true enterprise mobility, there is LiveCycle Mobile ES2, which extends process management, data capture and content services to mobile devices. Easily integrated with back-end systems, it allows an intuitive mobile experience for iPhone, Blackberry, Android and WM devices. Effort has also been made to extend existing business processes to the Flash Platform (Flash Player, AIR and Adobe Reader).

What about HTML 5?

At Adobe, they love HTML 5 - really! One of my previous blog posts looked at the “war” between Flash and HTML 5, and concluded that in truth, there is no such thing! Both technologies have their own key strengths and uses depending on their application.  

Adobe is really working hard to introduce unbeatable interactivity to the web with HTML 5 and jQuery, and Dreamweaver is really focusing on the new HTML specification. Another cool project that is to come out of Adobe: a Flash to HTML 5 converter! Although not yet a standalone product or a feature in Flash Professional, this is still a very welcome sign of things to come.

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About the author

Jérôme Lorido
Jérôme Lorido

More than 10 years in web development from Microsoft to Adobe, PHP or webdesign, instructor at l'école des Gobelins d'Annecy for 5 years. Chose this path because it's an endless adventure, always moving, morphing, changing.