Macromedia Flex: Expanding on Flash to Provide Rich Client Capabilities
Companies originally moved to adopt standards-based technologies like those underlying the Web and the Internet as a way to achieve distributed computing functionality at a very low total cost of ownership. However, such companies had to forego many of the user interface and productivity advantages that other distributed computing methods, such as traditional client/server applications, gave them. This fundamental drawback to thin clients like Web browsers let to an emerging class of vendor that offers rich client solutions that provide the optimal combination of rich, low-cost interaction through standards-based distributed computing.
Macromedia was one of the early pioneers in rich user interaction across the Internet. In 1997, they made a splash in the market with their Flash product, and as of the date of this report, over 90% of Web browsers and 500 million users are equipped with the Macromedia Flash player. Continuing this legacy, Macromedia has introduced its Flex product that leverages Flash to provide rich client capabilities over standards-based, loosely coupled distributed computing infrastructures.