Are you still struggling to find out which RIA solution is best for you? With so many frameworks to choose – AJAX, Adobe Flash, Adobe Flex, Microsoft SilverLight, OpenLaszlo, Curl, JavaFX, do you feel lost somehow?
You have seen all kinds of comparisons or reviews online, such as:
AJAX vs. Flex vs. SilverLight
10 reasons to love AJAX (or Flex, or SilverLight, or …)
10 reasons to hate AJAX (or Flex, or SilverLight, or …)
At the end of the day, you may wonder: “Now What?”
The good news is, life can be much simpler! You are not here to select the best movie for OSCAR. Your job is to simply find the most suitable RIA framework for YOU!
As an example, I’d like to share with you why Flex is good for me. My top 5 reasons are:
1. Easy to Learn and Use
Before Flex, I was a Java developer. Before Java, I was a C++ and COBOL guy on IBM Mainframe. So I know exactly how painful it is to learn a new programming language. Just like switching from a manual transmission to an automatic one, it takes time for you to get used to that.
Surprisingly, the first time I saw Flex code, I thought it was Java. Considering the similar syntax, structure, and style, it is like the same coffee with different cream. With no time, I built my first fully functional application in Flex and Wow my colleagues.
Another beauty of Flex is its development tool – Flex Builder 3. It is built on the same platform – Eclipse as my J2EE IDE. So I don’t have to learn a new set of settings, shortcuts, or tricks. Plus Flex Builder 3 provides many useful features, such as design editor, build tools, integrated debugger. It makes your job so much easier! You can get your copy of Flex Builder 3 here.
2. Mature Language and Framework
In addition,there are some mature frameworks to support Flex at the architecture level. Like Struts and Spring for Java, command-driven Cairngorm and event-driven Mate are two frameworks to implement the MVC (Model-View-Control) design pattern for Flex. And they both are open sourced projects.
3. Cross Browser Support