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From Rui Silva <rui.si...@alert-online.com>
Subject RE: [PROPOSAL] Flex for Apache Incubator
Date Wed, 21 Dec 2011 15:21:29 GMT
Hi,

I have been a Flash/Actionscript/Flex developer for most of last decade and I have a clear
invested interested on the Flash platform as a whole because it allowed me to do the stuff
I wanted quicker and more easily. I won't engage in discussions of what is better than what
for what, so leave it be.

What I want to say here is that, regardless of whatever interest I have in the Flash runtime
capabilities, the thing that really makes me want Flex, as an open SDK, to move forward is
the fact that it can fill a need for a robust and mature application development framework
that is truly deployable across platforms and devices. And for me, that constitutes a very
good open source initiative.

I see the current incubation proposal as just the starting point for the next phase of Flex's
life and it might lead it to be a prime choice for the development of rich applications, again,
regardless of runtime technology.

Cheers,
Rui Silva

-----Original Message-----
From: Leo Simons [mailto:mail@leosimons.com] 
Sent: quarta-feira, 21 de Dezembro de 2011 14:43
To: general@incubator.apache.org
Subject: Re: [PROPOSAL] Flex for Apache Incubator

Hey folks,

I had to think about this a bunch. We don't have anything like this at apache today.

On Tue, Dec 20, 2011 at 9:37 PM, Greg Stein <gstein@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Tue, Dec 20, 2011 at 15:30, Raju Bitter <rajubitter@googlemail.com> wrote:
>> (..) Adobe Flex is quite different from most Apache projects (...) it 
>> looks like the output of the compiler can only be used with 
>> Adobe-owned proprietary software at the moment. (...)
>
> As I mentioned above, I don't see this as a problem whatsoever. (...)

Just to pick this apart...

* Flex helps you make apps that target the flash player (or the AIR runtime...)
* There is effectively one implementation of flash player (supporting the v10 SWFs that come
out of flex...)
** which you get from adobe or someone that has an agreement with adobe
** which comes with very restrictive licenses [3]
*** basically you probably can't even *use* it if you want to implement a flash player yourself
[4].
* This flash player plays SWF files (and FLVs..).
** SWF has an "open spec" that isn't very open at all [1,2].
* Flex does not produce SWF files all by itself. It uses the Flash SDK and the AIR SDK (and
some other bits)
** which you have to get from adobe and which come with very restrictive licenses.
* Adobe could unilaterally change the license for the flash player, the SWF format, and/or
the prerequisite SDKs, and flex would become essentially useless.

Analogies to .Net or Java (or oracle databases) don't make much sense to me. Instead if I
had to come up with an analogy, it would be something like having an apache http server that
you could only install on windows, and run only if you already had IIS, and that would then
host websites that you could only view if you had internet explorer.

I don't understand why it's useful to have such a project at apache.
But, apparently, a lot of people do want to work on it, and flex is obviously useful to a
lot of people.

So is there a problem? I guess not. As long as the Apache Flex website makes all this clear
enough and no-one makes a PR mess out of it or anything like that, I don't see any actual
problem with the proposal.
I can't say I'm enthusiastic about it, but I don't have to be.


cheerio,


Leo

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SWF#Licensing
[2] http://www.adobe.com/devnet/swf.html
[3] http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/eula/flashplayer10.html
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gnash#Adobe_Flash_Player_End_User_License_Agreement

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