In late October, Creative Blvds announced a partnership between Adobe, Inc and all educational institutions worldwide. Adobe is offering their Flex Builder 2 program to students, free of charge. In my opinion, this is an extremely generous and positive step for Adobe, whom I believe is recognizing the shortage of talent in both creating Web 2.0 applications and understanding the strategy behind it. Now, the few professors who are proficient and skilled enough in the area of creating rich internet applications (RIAs) to be used on the web (social networks, corporate websites, nonprofit sites, etc) can educate their students most effectively, using the Flex program as their primary hands on teaching tool. These RIA are created based on Adobe’s Flash platform, which I actually have been working with extensively lately.
With the use of Flex Builder, students and professors will be able to expand their knowledge of and skill in creating these applications that help Web 2.0 to function as the user generated environment it has become. And the students? Over half of them probably contributed to the user generated content of the web in some form or another, whether it be through blogs, Facebook or MySpace profile, or posting their videos or pictures to sites such as YouTube or Flickr. So, who better than to learn more about creating the RIAs that help it grow?
Brilliantly, the VP of Education Marketing at Adobe, Peter Isaacson, understands this need for talent, himself:
“By making it easier for educational institutions to adopt Flex 2, we are ensuring that students and researchers are better equipped to harness the power of Web 2.0 and RIAs. It is clear that RIAs are the future of Web development, and a strong skill set in RIA development will serve students well in their careers.”
I, personally, can understand this need for a marketing, or strategic type thinker to understand the programming or design of RIAs and Learning Interactions through Adobe Flash or Flex Builder. One of my clients requested for me to extensively learn this skill, almost entirely on my own because the few who did know the software and concepts were busy with the projects that required these expertise! There is a need for this talent. Those students who have the interest and take advantage of the use of Flex Builder will benefit when they are ready to take the skill out into the marketplace.
I encourage all students and professors to consider checking out this software, which is available for download on the Adobe website. If the software is in any way relevant to their curriculum, this or similar software, such as Adobe Flash, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, and Illustrator, be added to the course syllabus, if at all possible. This knowledge will benefit the students in whatever career they choose.
Check out the Software!
- Adobe Flash Pro CS3
- Adobe Flex Builder 2 – 1 User
- Adobe Dreamweaver CS3
- Adobe Photoshop CS3
- Adobe Illustrator CS3
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