Adobe Systems Incorporated of San Jose, California has announced that it has plans to release a visual tool that will help designers more easily build rich Internet applications (RIA) that will work with developers who are writing back end code.
Known as “Thermo,” the new tool will actually allow designers to draw pictures of what an application should look like and then generate applications from those pictures that will interact with users – without requiring written code. A Thermo prototype was demonstrated live at the keynote address at this week’s Adobe MAX 2007 User Conference in Chicago, Illinois.
Thermo is being developed to help address the “disconnect” that can occur between designers and developers when a new RIA is being built. Historically, once the logic of an application has been coded by developers it is very difficult for designers to present their visual design of the application with currently available technology tools since most designers are visually oriented, rather than code oriented.
This is where Thermo comes in. Thermo reportedly will allow designers to create their visual representations into a working program even before it reaches the development team. According to Adobe, Thermo is being built on the current available Adobe Flex Builder development environment tool. Flex Builder provides workflow designs to assist developers in rendering visual parts of an application so that visual elements can then be added to an RIA. Reportedly, designers using the new Thermo tool will not be required to write code for their applications, but will have the option to view the source code and see it in a Flex Builder editor to work with if they so choose.
Adobe has not indicated a date for the full release of Thermo, but it is predicted to be available to designers sometime in 2008. Adobe normally provides “preview” releases to developers and designers of its pre-beta technology so that they can begin testing it and using it, and provide first-hand feedback to Adobe.
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