Adobe Apollo

Discussion in 'Game Development (Technical)' started by Teq, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. Teq

    Teq
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    For those who do not know what this is (http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/apollo/).

    Has anyone had chance to play with the SDK yet? What would people say are for and against this kind of runtime system? I ask because I've just had a rather heated discussion with one of my fellow developers regarding the draw-backs/benefits of Apollo, the narrow minded arguments being something along the lines of "this can mostly be done in IE", not the most platform independent mindset I agree - but still made me wonder as to whether we should discount working on this for the short and medium term (I get excited about new technologies and would jump at the chance to play)...
     
  2. Indiepath

    Indiepath New Member

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    I'm a little bemused by this. On the surface, and according to the demos, it appears to be a set of tools that enables you to deploy a web application as a desktop application.

    So...

    1) Why take a web app and put it on the desk? Web applications are built for portability and accessability? what gives?

    2) So you run a webapp from the desktop? Did adobe just re-invent the browser?
     
  3. Bad Sector

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    Portability and Adobe do not match, period.
     
  4. soniCron

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    I think they're playing the "web app" part of it up, and unduly so. It's just an API that has Internet communication built in. The truly valuable part is that you develop cross-platform rich-media applications with RAD tools. It's easy as pie to do a lot of things that would take ages with other application development environments.

    Well, I say this without ever touching the Apollo API, but I've got tons of experience on their other platforms (Flash/Flex) on which this technology is based and supposed to be modeled after.
     
  5. Bad Sector

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    (rant mode on)

    Cross-platform? Since when Flash is cross-platform? I'm still waiting a Flash version for my OS (64bit Linux).

    Cross-platform doesn't mean "we run in windows and mac". Heck, they don't even support all versions of these operating systems currently in use. While someone wouldn't expect to get support for Windows 98 (let alone 95) and possibly Me, i don't see a valid reason for not supporting Windows 2000 or non-SPd XP or Windows Vista Basic. And from the Mac OS X part, they only support the latest version.

    Two platforms and only a few versions. So cross-platform indeed.

    Anyway, it's still an alpha thing, their FAQ states that somewhere, someday they may make Linux version too. But based on the experience with Flash, it would probably be version 1.0 while there is version 4.0 out and it will be as unstable as hell.

    But then, there are other technologies, which are in a state to support more platforms than Flash do. While Java would be an obvious choice (although there isn't any 64bit applet plugin), there is actually the classic C++ and SDL solution. If you are concerned about development speed, you don't have to rewrite everything (...although i'm not really in a position to say stuff like that...), just reuse existing code from others. There is even the possibility to use JavaScript + Canvas or JavaScript + SVG in a stripped down Mozilla (or just use XULRunner). The Mozilla sourcebase is ported to an instane number of systems.

    (rant mode off)

    Ok, this rant doesn't go to anyone in particular, but really i can't stand reading such stuff. I'm here, working on one of the most advanced operating systems ever (64bit Linux in an AMD64), using a user interface many windows users would drool around (GNOME+Beryl) in a really easy to use distribution where everything simply works (Ubuntu) and all these in a four years old computer with 512MB of RAM.

    And yet, having this incredible environment, where i can do my work, communicate, listen music or watch movies and play most of the games i like (WoW, mostly :p), i still need to use an external tool and an external player (that is, two tools) to locally download and watch videos from YouTube. Only because Adobe didn't had the responsibility to make Flash available for 64bit Linux systems.

    And yes, it's a responsibility. Since they managed to make themselves something like a standard, they are responsible -at least- to make their gear works everywhere.

    (ok, now rant mode is really off)

    (the same applies for Java 64bit applet support too - although i believe that this will be fixed soon, now that the VM got opensourced)
     
  6. soniCron

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    The expectant attitude sported by many open source advocates is laughable!

    It just doesn't make gobs of business sense to support a platform on which there is very little commercial interest. Just as with your operating system, tools, etc., perhaps you should write your own Flash plugin?

    Don't get me wrong, I understand where you're coming from. I don't run Linux because I don't have Photoshop, 3DS Max, and Fruity Loops on there. But I don't expect them to foot the bill for development of something which would likely see almost no commercial interest. That's just silly! :)

    (And, FWIW, your comparison of C++/SDL as an alternative to Flash and Flex is ludicrous!)
     
  7. Bad Sector

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    Well, actually i'm more of an open source user than an advocate :).

    See below.

    Assuming that by "your" you mean the "open source advocates" you mentioned above (since i haven't wrote the operating system i use - not even the 0.001% of everything i generally use), there are open source Flash plugins, but just like the open source non-Sun Java VMs, they lack most of the functionality. So they aren't usable.

    The problem is that Photoshop, 3DS Max and Fruity Loops aren't expected standards which everyone assumes you have. Flash OTOH, is an expected standard. Yesterday i spent around 5 minutes looking around in a person's (messy) webpage where he was trying to tell me where some mp3s his band made, are. It came out that they were "links" in a small flash thing he made (or got from somewhere) and obviously i couldn't see them. Some days ago, i was looking for music samples here, but i couldn't hear a few of some of the musicians because they were using flash music players (which isn't a bad thing as an idea, but they used only that - they didn't have download links for their music). I used to be a part of a Greek gaming community site (to which i contributed at the past), recently they filled their site with Flash stuff and without it it is unusable. From a point of view, i was thrown out because of my OS of choice.

    So my point is, Flash isn't Photoshop or 3DSMax. It is really like HTML, but controlled by a single entity (Adobe). I admire their move to open source their scripting engine and donate it to Mozilla (which shows a little hope for the future), but currently it is in a position where they practically control who can experience "rich web" and who wont. And web is a user thing, not a developer thing. As a user i don't care if you made your .png file in Photoshop, GIMP or MS Paint, as long as i like it, because .png is an open format, standarized and well supported, so i can see it. But i do care if you made your web game, video player or menu in Flash, because the .swf format is not standarized, very complex and supported only by one player which is available only to a very small subset of the available platforms. And i cannot see it.

    My "frustration" (if any, because actually i ignore flash sites) is mostly driven from my user part, not my developer or businessman part. As a user all i see is that Adobe doesn't support me.

    Ok, i was probably a bit "extreme" on that part, but i was mostly focusing on the cross-platformess.
     
  8. XIX

    XIX
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    Tis a browser minus some security / with more access to the machine.

    So Pretty much yes :)

    Its presumably largely aimed at intranet style large company uses, I mean I know some people building something thats targeted to IE7 only, wouldn't you rather aim at apollo?
     
  9. ggambett

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Don't forget wxPython...
     
  10. whisperstorm

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    I dunno. I do javascript and HTML / CSS all day long in my day job, and being able to create standalone apps which can have persistent memory/storage is kinda cool. I know of a number of startups that are exploring using apollo along with Flex.

    In a related note, have you tried out that papervision3d stuff? It looks incredible. They even have some games (x-wing fighter racing) that look interesting.
    http://www.papervision3d.org/

    http://blog.papervision3d.org/2007/03/11/new-era-of-flash-gaming-yeah-i-think-so/

    http://www.noventaynueve.com/lab/rhino/
     
  11. raigan

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    It's probably karma -- there are numerous open-source projects that seem to think "cross-platform" means "we run in windows and linux" ;p
     
  12. Bad Sector

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    Their cross-platformness suck as much as their closed source counterparts, minus one point: the point that because of the source code availability, there is always the possibility that someone port the project to another platform.


    (and no, that's not an excuse for Nikwi running only in Windows and Linux - i asked for a Mac port in the page :p)
     
  13. HairyTroll

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    Of course it does. It runs "across platforms", meaning more than one. Windows is platform #1, Mac is platform #2.

    I mean, by your definition absolutely nothing can be considered 'cross platform' unless it runs on absolutely everything: DOS, Windows 3.0 though Vista, MAC OS X and Mac Pre OS X, Amiga, Atari ST, BeOS, Sam Coupe, C64, Spectrum, PDP-11, AS400, S/36, old Lisp Symbolics machines, that Cray XMP they used to make 'The Last Starfigher' in the 80's, HP graphing calculators, and my old Casio wristwatch that played Greensleeves. etc. etc.
     

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