Adobe Flex 2 has been released as planned. The first question is how much.The quick answer is better than expected, and here “s the breakout:
What “s free:
Flex 2 SDK, command line compilers and Flex Data Services Express (must run on a single-processor server), Flash Player 9, which is actually a virtual machine that “weighs rdquo; only 1.1Mb and is about 10 times faster than Flash Player 8.
What “s not free:
Flex Builder, Eclipse-based IDE: $499 (or $749 with charting components)
Charting components (alone): $299
Flex Data Services, departmental licens up to 100 concurrent users: $6000 per CPU
enterprise license: $20,000 per CPU
Well, I was asking for free Flex Builder, it “s not free yet, but $499 is much better than originally promised “under $1000 “. People with advamced Math degrees may argue that $499 is also under $1000 hellip;
While I “ll keep picketing for free Flex Builder, independent vendors are working on free Flex 2 IDE already, so most likely Adobe will lower this price in the near future.
So let “s see, if you want to create a small community site, it “ll cost you $500 ( one license of FlexBuilder). You get the Flex Data Services, which is a Java Web application that you can deploy in any servlet container, i.e. Tomcat, which is free as Staten Island Ferry.
Managing your manager
The next question is how to manage your manager to make your enterprise an early Flex 2 adopter. This is how I “d do it:
1. Download a trial 30-day Flex Builder and charting components
2. Download Flex Data Services Express ndash; it “s free
3. Start regularly asking your manager to give you five hundred bucks for just one little FlexBuilder license. It should take you about 30 days, meanwhile you can use its trial version (see item 1 above).
4. Volunteer to create a small proof of concept project that would mimic one of the non-Flex applications that are currently being developed/deployed in your shop. Most likely your manager will say that it “s not in the project plan, there are deadlines to meet, and this typical corporate blah-blah. Do not argue, just smile and say in a low voice, “No problem, I “ll do this in my own free time. rdquo;
If you spend 50 hours developing in Flex Builder, most likely you “ll be able to do as much as you “d do programming in Java Swing in 150 hours (well 100 hours using NetBeans/Matisse combo), and your screens will look prettier.
5. If you work for a financial company in New York City, I can come to your firm and do a 45-min Lunch-and-Learn session for free (offer is valid while supplies last).
6. After the initial proof of concept is done, ask your manager to start development of your new project using this one FlexBuilder license and a free Express version of Data Services. If your manager is smart, you “ll get a “Yes rdquo;, otherwise find another job.
For more Flex 2 resources, visit Flex Developers Center , FLex.org, read our article on using Flex with Java, and just Google on Adobe Flex 2. If you are a Flex developer, register yourself at http://www.flexcoders.net/.
We’ve submited a new article to Flex Developers center about a couple of new and cool open source components. Meanwhile check out the demos of the automatic Flex code generator DAOFlex and FlexReporter.
Just take your existing Java application and give it a facelift with Flex 2.