Thoughts on Adobe vs Apple from a guy standing between them both

I’m a developer.  I’m an entrepreneur. No company is responsible for my success or my downfall.  I am responsible for seeing the industry and (re)acting accordingly. As a developer, I know the pains of learning new technologies. As an entrepreneur, I know the pains of someone trying to tell me how to run my business.

Apple won the RIA War without ever joining the battle

Just about a year ago, I was chatting on the phone with Steve Weiss of O’Reilly Media.  I made a statement to him then and, sadly, never made any noise about it.  I think I held back the noise because I have a long relationship of working with Adobe and their products. I didn’t want to admit that I was probably right, so I said the statement, felt the pain of its truthfulness and tried to forget it.  The statement was simple:

“Adobe and Microsoft are trying to push this RIA term.  They’re trying to convince the world that this is a technology they want and need. They’re each trying to instill their own vision of that world: Adobe with Flash/AIR and Microsoft with Silverlight. The one thing that everyone’s missing is this: Apple has already won. iPhone apps are THE most widely used Rich Internet Apps.  Apple has silently won the war and no one’s even noticed. All they have to do is enable iPhone apps to run via Safari (for cross-platform support) and they’ll have crushed both Adobe and Microsoft’s dreams.” That last bit I was off.  Rather than upgrading the iPhone apps to the Mac, they upgraded the size of iPhone OS device and created the iPad.

Continue reading “Thoughts on Adobe vs Apple from a guy standing between them both”

Flex code (read: my Tic-Tac-Toe game) on my Playstation 3!

You fair readers of my blog may remember a post from waaaaaay back in the day entitled Playstation 3.  In it, I talk about being excited to run Flex Apps on my PS3.  Sadly, my pretty HD console only ran Flash Player 7, so Flex was not an option.  At MAX, I saw a big fat PS3 image and was hoping that Kevin Lynch would say, “Flash Player 9 is now on the Playstation 3!”  He didn’t so I assumed it wasn’t yet.  Then Renaun posted this!  Adobe has issues about making noise sometimes.  How did the blogosphere not light up on this news?  Well, maybe it did, but I somehow missed it.

Naturally, I went and did what the PS3 was meant to do: Play a game!  In this case, it was my very own Tic-Tac-Toe game.  Check it out!

Continue reading “Flex code (read: my Tic-Tac-Toe game) on my Playstation 3!”

Gaming: Playing both sides

Being an OG – Original Gamer

For as long as I can remember, I’ve gamed (specifically the video kind).  Before I got married, I spent almost every birthday I can remember at Chuck E. Cheese’s (even my 21st!)  To me, birthday equated to gaming.  In addition to those special days, I have a lot of memories in life associated with gaming:

  • When I was 6 or 7,  I remember me and my dad going to our frequent hangout, an arcade down the street.  It was actually a miniature golf course, but we never did anything but game.  We’d play Vanguard together.  As you can see by this image, it had this unique setup.  It was one of the first games I can remember that had multiple buttons.  My dad would drive (use the control stick) while I sat shotgun (took control of the 4 direction shoot buttons).  Oddly, I think this contributed to my sense of it being okay to take the back seat for the greater good.  As long as the team wins, it doesn’t matter which position you play.
  • Continue reading “Gaming: Playing both sides”

Birthday Thoughts: Resource Utilization

The phrase “Resource Utilization” has so many meanings in my life currently, that I have no idea where to start.

At Workday, I (relatively) recently got a new manager, Charlie Boyle.  One of his strengths is definitely resource utlization.  Every manager has their own style and no style is right or wrong.  However, Charlie has brought some great plans to the team.  He’s brought on some processes and tools that make our lives as developers more productive. I don’t think we as a team work any less harder, but we’re definitely working a lot smarter due to the resource management.

My Silicon Valley Flex User Group (silvafug) is sorting being revamped as I write this.  At our most recent meeting, several of us got together to discuss how to better the user group in a variety of ways.  After Wednesday’s meeting, we’ll likely be officially announcing the launch of Silvafug South (and by default, Silvafug North).  There are a lot of great people in the user group with great ideas on how to make it better for everyone.  I look forward to working with them. Continue reading “Birthday Thoughts: Resource Utilization”

Not to be a Sony Fanboy, but…

We recently got an HDTV for my PlayStation3. You fair readers may recall that I waited in line all day to get my PS3 on launch day. I wanted to support the Cell architecture and Sony for investing in such cutting edge technology. 1080p TVs were way to costly back then though, so I waited on that. Recently, my wife saved up and bought me the Sony KDL40V3000.

The TV is amazing. Up until I brought this bad boy home and hooked it up to my PS3, I was getting tired of watching movies. After I watched my first Blu-Ray Disc movie though, I’ve been hooked again.

Not to mention playing games. Before my TV, I played a few here and there but it just wasn’t very exciting. Now, with so many great looking games for the PS3 (Ratchet and Clank is my current favorite, followed up quickly with the HD PSN version of Lemmings), gaming is once again very engaging. And these games are only at 720p, mind you!

The reason for my post though has nothing to do with the visuals of the TV or the game/movie feature of the PS3. Instead, I’ve just recently given EyeConnect a spin on my iMac. I have over 40 gigs of music on my machine which sits roughly 15 ft from my PS3 in the living room. Now, I could copy all my music to my PS3 or copy it to an external drive and hook that up, but why? It’s just right there. The iMac has wifi and the PS3 has wifi. They should be able to share, right?

With the magic of DLNA (Digital Living Network Association), I load EyeConnect on the Mac, turn it on, enable sharing via iTunes and iPhoto, and magic! My PS3 now has all my music and my photos. It’s pretty amazing on how simple it is to get it working.

I’ve been working hard since early New Year’s Eve and New Year’s day to meet a deadline at work. I have no computer speakers (they don’t tend to last long when your kids use them as hiding places for things), so I was worried that I’d have no way to hear my music. Hardcore coding without music just isn’t an option and my iMac has horrible quality speakers. (Yes, I could have used headphones, but I hate using headphones at home when I’m alone.) DLNA pulled through for me though.

The biggest surprise though is just how good my music sounds coming through the TV. My previous TV was bought in 2000 granted, so I should have expected some increase in speaker quality. However, the music sounds amazing considering they’re stock TV speakers, the music is MP3 and is being broadcast over wifi. Sometimes, technology just blows me away. Great job Sony on the DLNA support in the PS3 and the excellent speaker technology on the TV.

Now, if I can just find a free moment to learn how to program my multi-core Cell chip via Yellow Dog Linux, I’d be a happy man. 🙂

For you MacHead/PS3 fans, here are the total steps I used (courtesy of _Liquidus_ , thanks!):

1. Download Eyeconnect and install it.

2. Go into your SYSTEM PREFERENCES and click on the SHARING folder.

3. Click on the SERVICES tab and select PERSONAL FILE SHARING as on.

4. Click on the FIREWALL tab and select iTUNES MUSIC SHARING on,

5. While still in the FIREWALL tab click NEW on the right side and
choose PORT NAME: Other and enter 2170 in the TCP PORT NUMBER and type
in EyeConnect in Description, click OK, select the newly added item as

6. Go into iTUNES and go into the PREFERENCES, click the SHARING tab
and check the box beside “Share My Library on my local network”.

7. Turn on your PS3 and run the Media Server search and your Mac
should show up (mine did)

Future of ActionScript (via ECMAScript) and language talk

Josh wrote up a nice post on the proposed ECMAScript 4 language. He basically took the 40-page spec and ripped out the juicy parts for all to see.

It’s funny to me the path of languages. Every language evolves over time. This evolution includes supporting functions/classes that are found in older languages. These languages become all the rage, then become old and lose out to newer language upstarts. Those upstarts in turn then take the time to evolve and garner all the functionality of the older languages.

Granted, I’m simplifying things greatly. Sure each language brings something new to the table, lest why would we abandon the old ones to begin with? Things become faster and older concepts can be implemented in cooler, more efficient ways.

The things that I’ve been hearing lately is that horizontal scaling is becoming more important than vertical scaling. Meaning, instead of writing code that uses a processor at 100% for 1 second. You need to learn to write your code so that it can parse that work to 100 processors that take 10 milliseconds each to compute it’s part. That’s why I bought my PS3 last year. If life ever settles down long enough, I hope to be able to learn to how create apps that utilize all the cores in the Cell processor like the Interactive Ray Tracing (IRT) app. This youtube vid shows the IRT in action and visually shows each processor in use. Friggin’ sweet.

Yeah, Flash player is single threaded, but Flash/Flex ain’t everything, right? Plus, Adobe has smart folks. They’ll figure out something to utilize those multi-core processors out there, besides video encoding. 🙂


Yes, I was one of those nuts who waited for a PlayStation3 on launch day. I chose the Metreon in San Francisco as my spot, and that was luxurious until midnight when they stopped feeding us. All in all, a 24 hour wait in line ’til I left with my black PlayStation3 bags.

Like my good friend Miguel put it, “But why did you do that? You don’t even game.” To prove his point even more, launch day was almost a month ago and it’s taken me this long to start messing with my PS3. Before tonight, I watched the free Blu-Ray movie and checked out the photo slideshow, but that was about it.

Today, I tried out Resistance: Fall of Man. I have to admit. It was pretty fun. The graphics are nice, but not mind blowing. I haven’t gotten very far, but there’s some fun things in the game already like controlling a tank and taking over some mega-guns to shoot the enemies. The online gaming feature was fun too, but that’s not why I bought a PS3.

Instead, I’m excited for something I ordered today: Yellow Dog Linux for the PS3. I’m excited about this for many reasons. This will be my first tinkering with Linux. More importantly though, I’ll get to program for the Cell processor. Now, I’m not sure how much of the processor I’ll be able to program for (I keep reading conflicting stories), but I hope all of it. For some reason, the Cell processor just has this pull on me.

Another neat thing too is that the PS3 runs Flash from the GameOS. I’m trying to figure out which version so I can build stuff for it. I’m know it’s not version 9, but I hope they get a v9 player soon. I’d like to develop some Flex stuff to browse from the PS3.

All in all, pretty exciting stuff…as far as a computer nerd is concerned. LOL