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Social Media on Ulitzer RIAbiz.com recently discussed the findings of an August 24-25, 2009 Investment News survey conducted on the Twitter habits of the financial-advisory community.  Not surprisingly the survey reveals that "a mere 14.9% of financial advisers say they communicate with clients or colleagues through Twitter.  Meanwhile, only 44.9% and 43.8% of advisers say they use LinkedIn and Facebook, respectively, the survey found". Have RIAbiz.com and Investment News missed the point?  It's not about Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn!  It's about communicating with one's customers and clients utilizing ALL the tools available! So, what's my point? Practical, functional, and sensible go a long way to enhancing the relationships financial advisors are trying to create between themselves and their customers and clients, with or without social media tools.  Social me... (more)

Heard on Hanselminutes

Hanselminutes is a weekly 30-minute podcast with Web developer and technologist Scott Hanselman hosted by Carl Franklin. The following is a transcript from show number 19 on BitTorrent. You can listen online at www.hanselminutes.com. Carl Franklin: So, we're talking about BitTorrent today. Scott Hanselman: BitTorrent, video squishing, things you can do with BitTorrent, optimizing BitTorrent, how it works, and various legalities. CF: And that would be a good time for a disclaimer, would it not? SH: It would indeed. CF: Yeah. SH: We cannot, we're not lawyers, we're not legal or illegal people, we're just guys talking to you on your iPods, hopefully in double speed if you're not wasting your time, and we have no way to know whether this is legal or not legal. Carl, what have you found in your research? CF: Well, I found that certain things are legal to share and certain... (more)

Who Are The All-Time Heroes of i-Technology?

I wonder how many people, as I did, found themselves thrown into confusion by the death last week of Jean Ichbiah (pictured), inventor of Ada.  Learning that the inventor of a computer programming language is already old enough to have lived 66 years (Ichbiah was 66 when he succumbed to brain cancer) is a little like learning that your 11-year-old daughter has grown up and left home or that the first car you ever bought no longer is legal because it runs on gasoline in an age where all automobiles must run on water. How can something as novel, as new, as a computing language possibly already be so old-fangled that an early practitioner like Ichbiah can already no longer be with us? The thought was so disquieting that it took me immediately back to the last time I wrote about Ichbiah, and indeed about Ada Lovelace for whom his language was named. It was in the context ... (more)

Enterprise Widgets: The Story So Far

A desktop widget is a small application that provides very focused information from a predetermined data source. Desktop widgets generally have a small footprint, are of fixed dimensions, and provide information “at-a-glance.” A widget sounds a bit like a dashboard, but unlike dashboards, widgets allow you to input data as well as view it. In addition, desktop widgets generally run on a widget engine, which is a runtime environment that may be ported to two or more operating systems and provide security, local-management, and access to system and network resources through platform agnostic APIs. Dashboards, on the other hand, tend to be stand-alone applications. Figure 1 shows the general architecture of a desktop widget engine. Figure 1: Architecture of a desktop widget engine Desktop widgets have been around for a very long time. The first set of des... (more)

Adobe Flex: Prefixing Fx

Adobe’s Flex team seems inclined to move away from clean design. Flex framework’s current stable version is 3.x and the Flex team at Adobe is actively working on getting the version 4.x ready this year. At this time, the core SDK of Flex 4, codenamed Gumbo, is evolving through an open source process. From peeking into its initial version, it looks promising as there are serious attempts to create a clean separation of behavior and presentation in the components, apart from the tons of nifty enhancements throughout the framework. (I promise to write about some of the forthcoming features soon) However, one design decision in the midst of all this goodness seems rather odd and alarming. The Flex team is proposing to prefix Gumbo component names with the letters “Fx”. Lets try and understand what this means. In Flex 3.x and 2.x you have a button component, which you acc... (more)

Master Class on Adobe Flex in Brussels and More

After teaching our popular advanced Flex master class in New York, Boston, Toronto, London, and Moscow, we are hitting the beer capital of the world: Brussels, Belgium. This class is scheduled for the first days of March, and we hope that Flex 4 will be officially released by this date. Our book Enterprise Development with Flex should hit the book stores by then too. To take advantage of the early bird prices register early at http://bit.ly/59DdIU. If you can't make it to Brussells, I'll be glad to meet with you at 360 Flex in San Jose, CA on March 7-10, where I'll be presenting on one of the topic from this master class. If you can't make it to San Jose, I'll be very happy to meet you at Flash and the City conference in May in New York City. Most likely I'll show you a really cool way of embedding a Flex application into a PDF file to be played by Acrobat Reader.... (more)

Adobe to Discusses Social Media and Government

Loni Stark, group manager for Government Solutions at Adobe Systems Incorporated, recently interviewed with Focus Washington TechView to discuss the emergence of social media in government and how agencies are leveraging newer technologies, such as Twitter and Facebook, with positive returns. Social media has illustrated government agencies can interact with citizens in a more engaging manner versus the traditional perception of "cold," impersonal processes, Stark explained.   A significant opportunity for agencies, she continued, is learning how to take lessons from social media technologies, such as their ease-of-use and intuitive nature, and apply them to core services like benefits enrollment and delivery. The interview also included conversation on related challenges, such as ensuring proper policies and governance are in place, as well as appropriate securit... (more)

Adobe, Looking to Stay Relevant, Goes Cloud

Adobe launched Creative Suite 6 Monday, the latest version of its flagship software kit for designers and web developers, and made it subscription-based, part of the company's Creative Cloud. Pricing starts at $50 a month for a year's commitment or $75 a month with no contract. Existing users may qualify for a $30-a-month promotion for the first year and there's a version for business teams that'll cost $70 a month that won't be out for a while. Users can download Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, After Effects, InDesign and any of the also separately priced other programs in the bundle to a PC or Mac, share files and store work online in a 20GB locker. Adobe's hoping the new, more affordable model brings in more sales and stabilizes its erratic performance of late. It has visions of adding a billion dollars but near-term it's expecting to take a hit from spreadi... (more)

SYS-CON.TV Exclusive: Jeremy Geelan Interviews Adobe's Kevin Lynch

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Building an iPhone Application with Adobe AIR

A study of the iPhone UI and rebuilding it in AIR (Adobe Integrated Runtime) using Adobe Flex 3. AIR (Adobe Integrated Runtime) is a cross-operating system runtime that allows developers to use their existing web development skills to build and deploy Rich Internet Applications to the desktop. With the WebControl component in AIR which is powered by WebKit it will allow you to build and test iPhone Applications. Also, I will be showing a component that will give the ability to make and receive calls, record/send and receive voicemail, as well as add and manage contacts. Speaker Bio: Flex developer, information architect, roller hockey goaltender. Joe Johnston has worked with Flash and other interactive tools for over ten years, starting his career at Crowe/Horwath. AJAXWorld Conference & Expo 2007 West will take place on September 23-26, 2007, at the Santa Clara Con... (more)

Data Services Made Easy for Adobe Flex Applications

Flex has gotten popular lately because of its rich GUI capabilities. It also comes in handy with HTTPService and Web Service components connecting to back-end servers to fetch and update data. But using this mechanism to talk to the back-end server requires formulating a unique service object from the Flex side, making a request, and getting back data from the back-end either in XML or plain text format. The response data then has to be parsed and fed to the Flex objects to update the UI. For small to medium-size Flex projects it's a viable solution, but for enterprise projects with thousands of external service calls it will get quite repetitive and could result in a lot of unmanageable, buggy code. The approach discussed here provides a more intuitive solution to generate ActionScript classes on the Flex side that are direct counterparts of the enterprise object ... (more)