Adobe’s onAIR Bus Tour Stops In Washington DC (Well Fairfax, VA)

So yesterday I spent the entire day (like 10 hours) at the State Theater in Fairfax, VA for Adobe’s one-day conference on the Adobe Integrated Runtime (AIR) environment.   If you’re not familiar with AIR, it allows you to easily create cross-platform Web-enabled desktop applications.   They brought in their expects (on a bus) and talked about the technology.

With this event, I think that Adobe showed that they realize something important.  Developers play an important role in getting something adopted.  If developers aren’t behind the adoption of a new technology, chances are its not going to go very far.

Adobe went out of there way to lay it on pretty thick.  There was good free food and an ample supply of Red Bull.  They even were pouring free beer for a while. They passed out a bunch of free literature on  AIR. They had free t-shirts.  They had a game room setup.  They were giving away packs of O’Reilly books and even a copy of Adobe CS3 Master Suite.

They had free wifi, which unfortunately wasn’t very good. I think my iPhone got better  up and download speeds, which is crazy.  The wifi not working was good though because it encouraged me to pay better attention, although it would have been nice to download some of the apps as they were talking about them.

The AIR platform looks interesting.  I wanna start playing around with it.  It’d be fun to pick up a weekend, do some coding jam sessions, and see what kind of apps some of our local folks can come up with.  Who wants to do this?

One question I didn’t get answered was the accessibility of these AIR apps.  How well are they going to work with a screen reader?  Is there a mechanism for text resizing?  Is that something the application author would have to add?  Would WCAG be the relevant accessibility guidelines?

Another thing… I’d love to see Microsoft do an event like this for their Windows Presentation Foundation.

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