The end of the year 2011 was a hard one for Adobe Flex community, better to say the hardest time in the history of this technology. 2011 caused storm of discussions, debates, speculations over the future not only of Flex but also of Flash and Silverlight. But, as we know, after every storm the sun will smile… Now it`s possible to say for sure that Flex is not dead and, from technical point of view, remains one of the best tools to build web applications.
Adobe first began designing the Flex framework in 2002.Creating web apps for the enterprises is not the same as developing a Web site for a pizzeria in your neighborhood. During the last 6-7 years, development with Flex slowly became an approved enterprise technology – it’s compiled and controlled environment with good performance, testing tools, and internationalization support.
However, then, Adobe turned its back on Flex. And the way they did it could be included in the Bad PR section in textbooks. Instead of starting Adobe MAX conference in October of 2011 with a proud announcement that Adobe is donating Flex to Apache Foundation, which would get a standing ovation, they waited a month and made the same announcement right after declaring that they wouldn’t support Flash Player (Flex runtime) on the mobile devices. This sounded as if they wanted to kill Flex.
But it would be wrong to pronounce Flex as dead. It`s definitely alive! Technically it remains the best environment for development of Web application, but politically it became the product of the past.
Flex is a framework that helps you build dynamic, interactive rich Internet applications. What types of things would be considered rich internet applications? Just about anything. Online widgets, charts, calendars, and even games can be enhanced using Adobe Flex. It is capable of doing a lot of things. Websites such as Wilson Athletics Discovery Channel Online, and many more use Adobe Flex to power some of their online apps, features, and rich media.
Flex still successfully competes with other technologies. I’m not asking you to predict one more time the future of Flex:) I wonder, what kinds of applications you develop with Flex and why you’ve decided to choose this technology 🙂
Just “use the right tool for the job”. In some areas the might of Flex cannot be matched 🙂 For example: intranet tools for large companies with a rich user interface, which must be extensible, always ready for new features, testable, easy to debug, easy to maintain (refactorings, modularization) and portable. Flex is stable, mature and allows to build high quality solutions; there will be always room for such a technology. HTML5 is not intended to solve each and every problem we can have!
The end came when Steve Jobs shut down the door of not running Flash Player in iOS. That was the first blow.