Macromedia Announces Key Upgrade to Flex

Rhett Pardon
SAN FRANCISCO — Macromedia Inc. on Monday announced an upgrade for its Flex presentation server and application framework for building rich Internet applications, with improvements in data display, visualization, styling and performance.

Based on the Dreamweaver website tool, Flex allows developers familiar with Java and C# to build rich client applications using prebuilt components and then to deploy them in the Flash client.

"Flex momentum is growing because enterprises are crying out for more effective applications," company spokesman David Mendels said. "Flex 1.5 will significantly accelerate customer success in building rich Internet applications.”

Flex 1.5, which ships in November, not only features new enhancements but also allows additional deployment platforms such as Oracle Application Server 10g, IBM AIX and Fujitsu Interstage 6 as well.

The Flex upgrade also presents a 50 percent speed improvement, Macromedia said.

The San Francisco company announced the release only six months after its initial rollout of the technology. Pricing starts at $12,000 for a two-CPU system.

Macromedia said several large customers have adopted Flex, including Pfizer Inc., Dow Jones & Co. Inc., Northrop Grumman Corp., Science Applications International Corp. and Computer Sciences Corp.