Apollo Camp Scoop: effectiveUI helping developers extend Apollo

effectiveUI is announcing project Artemis today at Apollo Camp and from what I've seen, it may put a big boost in Apollo development even though Apollo is still an alpha product. With their libraries, developers can extend Apollo's abilities and access hardware, invoke native code and a lot more.

I got some information from effectiveUI about project Artemis (should be up shortly), a set of external libraries for Flex and Flash that will provide hooks into the desktop that aren't currently available. The libraries work with Apollo, but also extend some of the functionality by using Java as the underlying layer. A big part of Artemis is the community and effective UI is encouraging developers to share libraries and contribute to the project.

Artemis is going to ship with three libraries initially:

  • Screenshot Library - Allows you to take screenshots of your entire desktop, not just the flash application.
  • Generic JDBC Connection Library - Allows you to call SQL directly from Flex and receive result set objects.
  • XSLT Library - Developrs can perform XSL Transformations on Flex XML Objects

For Flex developers it provides a way to collaborate and build extensions of the Apollo framework. For Java developers, Artemis makes it easy to use a Flex User Interfaces with your Java code because you can invoke any Java library you have.

Artemis

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The big news is for Apollo developers because Artemis really expands what you can do with Apollo right now. Using The Java Artemis Bridge you can interface hardware including Bluetooth devices as well as invoke exe's and DLLs using Java libraries that then tie back to Flex and Flash. It looks like this is going to be a great community effort and I think it's an interesting way to expand the Apollo platform. Considering the product is still very much a work in progress, initiatives like these may help drive what ends up in the 1.0 product.

Adam Flater was the technical mind behind Artemis and Sean Christmann is handling the community aspect (and presenting it today at Apollo Camp in the 10:10 timeslot). Tony Hillerson also added some technical muscle. All of these people can be contacted on the Artemis project page and they'd love to hear feedback.

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