Adobe launches Apollo into Air

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Adobe launches Apollo into Air

GLOBAL - Adobe has released a first beta of its Apollo platform for rich internet applications, dropping the Apollo codename and unveiling Adobe Integrated Runtime (Air) as its new name.

The Air technology allows developers to build applications that blur the lines between online and offline tools. It uses existing internet programming techniques such as HTML, Ajax and Flash.

Air comprises a runtime that users install on their computers, and tools that allow developers to craft applications.

The runtime allows Air application to function on any operating system, including Windows, OS X and Linux. The company also released a beta of its open source Flex 3, a developer tool for creating Flash applications.

Where most of today's internet applications are tied to a browser, Air allows software to act more like regular desktop applications.

It also bridges the gap between online and offline software through a functionality that caches user data when the network connection is lost.

Since Adobe first unveiled its Apollo platform earlier this year, a slew of vendors have unveiled similar and often competing technologies.

Microsoft expects to start shipping a first preview of later this year, a technology that is similar to Flash.

Sun Microsystems in May unveiled its , a technology that aims to make Java more appealing to Flash and Ajax developers through the use of easy to use developer tools.

Google and the Dojo open source Ajax toolkit meanwhile have picked up on Adobe's ability to allow online applications to function without an internet connection with and .

Both technologies have been released under an open source licence and are currently in beta.

Adobe is partnering with Google Gears. The company also touted several earlier projects that will be using its platform from vendors including eBay and Salesforce.com.
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