Thought I’d get in a quick blog while my computer updates (sigh).
Today, I was sent a video demonstrating the iPhone app for Adobe Conenct!! If any of us here were wondering how the new Apple & Adobe frenemy-ship was going to affect us, here we have it!!
For anyone that hasn’t used Adobe Connect Pro at Ryerson yet – it is a real-time collaboration environment that enables text chat, audio/video chat, screen sharing, and much more! It’s a chat environment on steroids!!
Until recently, Apple wouldn’t allow Flash-based applications on the iPhone/iPod touch, instead requiring users to download apps from the iTunes store. Late last year, it was announced that the two companies were taking a step in the right direction — allowing the development of iPhone applications in Flash. Not quite what many of us were looking for, but a start.
Sometime in the future, we can expect to be able to participate in online Connect sessions via our iPhone or iPod touch! This is a very cool development, and surprisingly one that Ryerson users may be able to take advantage of… whenever the pieces all fall into place.
(Note: the part about Adobe Acrobat Connect starts a couple of minutes into the video – they start by quickly showing apps for Boost Your Brain and Digg)
Watching the updates as they came in, I wondered exactly how the world would take on the new Apple iPad. I have my doubts that it will ‘replace the laptop’, as some suggested (althought it should be noted that Apple never claimed that it would replace a gadget, but create its own niche in the market). I also question whether those interested in reading devices, such as the Kindle, will flock to this instead – sure, it has some additional features, but Apple chose not to apply a more ‘eye-friendly’ viewing surface, instead opting to continue the sharp, glossy look.
I immediately thought of its use in the school environment, especially considering the $499 USD price point for the base model. If textbook publishers jump on this technology, we could see students purchasing their textbooks in digital format, and carrying around one simple device to view all of them. The same device can be used for note taking, presentation development, etc. This could be an amazing tool for students, who may not need the bulk or functionality of a full laptop in the classroom, and who can’t conceive of taking all notes and reading textbooks on an iPhone.
Unlike technologies that require many users using it in ‘real life situations’ before its value can be assessed (like Google Wave), this is a personal device whose value can really best be assessed by the individual. I’m sure many such individuals will be rushing out to purchase this ‘nice-to-have’ device… I just wonder how many will discover that it is, in fact, a ‘need-to-have’ item in the end. I think students might be the ones to tip the scales here.
I didn’t catch all of the keynote today, but there was one big announcement that I wanted to repost here.
Flash CS5 will include the ability to develop iPhone Applications using Action Script 3.
This is one of those announcements that is both positive and yet a little disappointing. Let’s start with the good stuff — Flash can be a great tool for developing interactive applications delivered online. We’ve all seen examples of Flash at work, with things ranging from online games to animations to video sites like Youtube. People with a creative mind can take Flash really far! Now Flash developers can create iPhone Applications that can be delivered via the Apple iTunes Store (or iPhone developers can use Flash to develop… either way). Sounds great!
Apple and Adobe have not been playing well together when it comes to Flash on iPhones. I’m not pointing any fingers, but I know that I want to pull my hair out every time I have trouble accessing a site on an iPhone because it uses Flash. The hair-pulling will continue, unfortunately, because they have not agreed to permit in-browser Flash support for the iPhone.
Regardless, it is a good first step — now I hope they can take it all the way home!