Adobe Community Summit 2007

I've spent this week in San Jose at the Adobe offices for the annual community summit. This is a great event that Adobe puts on for user group managers and community experts. The event serves two purposes for me. It energizes me creatively to see what everybody else is doing and learn what is on the horizon for Adobe software. It also lets me reconnect with a great group of people. Over the past 10 years as a UGM I've built some outstanding relationships even though we generally only see each other once or twice a year. The format for the event works really well: there was a training day on Monday, presentations by senior management and product groups on Tuesday/Wednesday, and another day of training today (Thursday).

So what am I excited about after this week?

  1. Lots of stuff that I can't talk about. A substantial amount of the information presented at the event is under NDA. Respecting the NDA is the only way we're able to get this type of information ahead of the general public. It helps us better plan for our groups and serve as first-line reps for Adobe.
  2. MAX 2007. Ted Patrick is in leading the MAX endeavor and promises that it will be a MUCH better event. I've been pretty open about the fact that other than a few sessions, the networking, and the creative energy MAX isn't the best of conferences. This year is going to be different.
  3. AIR – Adobe Integrated Runtime. Other than the name this is sweet (when you say it is it "air" or is it "error" this will cause problems). What's AIR? It was codenamed Apollo and it is the runtime that lets web app developers build first-tier desktop apps using either html/javascript or Flex/Flash. The beta was released on Labs on Monday along with Flex 3 and a plug-in for Dreamweaver for HTML apps. A bus tour is even planned for the late summer wrapping up at MAX.
  4. Open Source. Adobe is embracing open source in a way that is going to substantially impact the industry. The biggest example to date is that the Flex framework is being opened under the MPL. Dave McAlister gave a great presentation summing up open souce at Adobe including discussion of licenses, strategy, and the impact it's having at Adobe.