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From "Michael A. Labriola" <labri...@digitalprimates.net>
Subject RE: Can Adobe kill Apache Flex
Date Tue, 21 Feb 2012 19:53:04 GMT
Hi Charles,

Answers integrated below:

So this is what I mean by the subject line. My understanding is that the Flash and Air runtimes
have not been open sourced which poses a vulnerability , so I think , that whatever advancements
made to the runtimes by Adobe will be incompatible with the Apache Flex project's advancements.


>That is not necessarily true. Think of the Flex framework as a Java project like Hibernate
or Spring and the Flash Player like the Java Virtual Machine. Oracle controls the Java virtual
machine's direction and features. When they add new features, any of the existing projects
are free to use them. So, while Oracle may not decide to implement a feature simply to aid
a Spring use case, it does not preclude Spring from using it.

Am I correct ? Adobe is claiming a buffer period of 5 years for projects builit with Flash
Builder 4 i.e. Flex SDK 4.6x but after 5 years that code is also subject to be rendered incompatible
with the newer runtimes.
>No. Adobe is promising that existing code will run for a minimum of 5 years on the existing
runtimes with no changes. That does not mean that code will cease to work, etc. Remember,
Flash Player today still runs code written in the 90s and before. However, from their perspective,
things like the iPhone didn't even exist 5 years ago, so it is difficult to predict what shape
the runtime may take in future years... they are providing a minimum just so customers understand
they have at least that time without significant risk.

There's also the possibility that changes to the Adobe runtimes to accommodate for example
Windows 8 may render Flex apps dead on Windows 8.
>That is highly unlikely and I am unsure where you are getting that information. There
is still ongoing discussion on how things like Flash may be supported on windows 8 as it is
still in development. As such, Adobe has not direct control over decisions that Microsoft
makes, just like decisions that Apple makes. Further, as you just noted above, they have already
said Flex apps will work in the existing runtimes for a minimum of 5 years. The bigger risks
in this area are Microsoft 'pulling an apple' in certain areas and deciding Flash Player wouldn't
be allowed. However, even in the case of Apple, we have a solution to deploy there and would
anticipate one here.

All risks I understand but I guess my over reaching question is what is Apache Flex doing
so that Flex will be able to run on the probably forever to be ubiquitous upcoming Adobe runtimes.
>Going back to my Java metaphor. We, right now, are deploying only on Adobe runtimes. This
means all of our development and all of our testing is on these runtimes. In other words,
we watch for changes to our virtual machine, we decide which ones we want to use, and we use
them where applicable.

Make sense?
Mike

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