Review of a.D. MMX (with bonus MMXI preview!)

Seriously, 2010 has to win the award for most frenetic year ever! It almost seems as though I was asleep for most of it- but that simply cannot be the case as I’ve accomplished far to much to have been asleep at the wheel.

So what have I done this past year? Well, things started out with great anticipation for mobile, followed up by a plea for sanity regarding the manufactured “HTML vs. Flash” debate. That pretty much framed a good portion of the year’s events. Some other things happened too… let’s break it all down by category.

Work at the University of Denver

Most of my work this past year at DU has been maintenance and bug fixes for current larger applications, the development of a lot of AIR based utility apps, and the planning and development of some newer applications for 2011. I was also involved in a lot of interviews and write-ups having to do with our work using the Flash Platform and other technologies. Almost all of my talks this past year have focused around my university projects as well- though these will be listed separately.

  • A bunch of experiments using AIR 2.0 Native Process.
  • Many, many CourseMedia updates over the year…
  • Released my AIR 2.0 HandBrake preset manager DropFolders.
  • I delivered a roundtable discussion at the COLTT conference in Boulder: “Mobile Outlook 2010 – Where Are We?”
  • I delivered a second session at COLTT called “Making Rich Video Happen!
  • Lots of planning around streaming video projects.
  • Finally got Adobe Connect 8 for university use.

All in all; a productive year – though with the amount of care and updating older applications take, it is quite difficult to take on any larger new projects. We are in the planning phases for some mobile development projects and I hope to have something out during the first quarter.

Conferences, Interviews, and Publications

It’s been an incredible year for the number of talks I’ve done at various conferences, user group meetings, and other events. Really an incredible amount of sessions and demos. Happily, I was able to present at Adobe MAX this past year which was a really great experience. Preparation for all these talks took up so much of my time that I’m thinking of scaling back a bit for 2011.

Also of note; I’ve had my projects featured on a number of different websites and have been interviewed by a number of folks around my university and AEL work. Add to this the articles I’ve written for InsideRIA (need to do more for them), CodeBass, and ActiveTuts+… aside from regular updates on this weblog… a lot of writing. Here are some hi-lights:

  • Some of my AIR for Android experiments got a mention in Flash and Flex Developer Magazine.
  • InsideRIA published my article on AIR 2.0 NativeProcess APIs!
  • I was interviewed for a case study regarding the University of Denver and Adobe Flash Platform tools.
  • I was interviewed about my role as Adobe Education Leader for a European journal. (as yet unpublished)
  • LifeHacker did a small story on DropFolders!
  • I delivered a session at the Adobe Education Leader Summer Institute in San Jose: “Using Collaborative Media Services with Flash in University Applications
  • I was video-interviewed regarding my use of Adobe Flash Platform tools and my role as Adobe Education Leader. (internal)
  • An Early Morning Letter, Displaced got some press through DU Today!
  • I received a feature in CodeBass!
  • I became an ActiveTuts+ author and my first set of tutorials “Using AS3XLS with the Flex Framework” were published.
  • 360|Flex DC happened. I wasn’t there, but Emergent Collective One got a mention on their blog and apparently got an odd shout out during 360 Flex-a-palooza —> proper pronunciation is (l?-br?-k) – not “B-B-Q”!
  • Went to Flash Camp, Denver!
  • I attended Adobe MAX 2010 in Los Angeles and gave THREE sessions while I was there; “Progressing beyond the Desktop at Universities with Adobe AIR” for MAX, “Open Source Media Framework for Education” for the Adobe Education Summit pre-conference, and “‘Emergent Collective One’ – All the Little Pieces…” for the FITC Unconference. BUSY week.
  • While at Adobe MAX, I was also interviewed by Motorola for their developer podcast series.
  • Did some tweeting for ActiveTuts+ while at Adobe MAX too.
  • Presented “AIR for Higher Education” at RMAUG miniMAX in Denver!
  • Was asked to contribute to the ActiveTuts+ “HTML5, Flash and RIAs: Industry Experts Have Their Say” article.
  • Contributed an AS3 audio demo set to CodeBass.
  • Had my “Using Flash Catalyst to Design a Film Trailer Website Series” published to ActiveTuts+
  • Gave a webinar to the Adobe Education CommunityWinter Fun with Adobe CS5 Tools
  • Recently went under contract with Packt Publishing to write a book!
  • Recorded an interview for The Flex Show on “Flex Development in Higher Education“!

Adobe Education Leader Stuff

Again, I am immensely thankful to be included among such a great group of people at Adobe and at institutions around the world. The AEL community is such a great resource and I try to contribute back as much as possible. Many of the unique activities I am able to be involved in are due to my involvement in this stellar group of people and it is all so valuable to me.

Thanks to Megan, Peter, Claire, John, Daniela and everyone at Adobe for making 2010 an absolutely terrific year to be involved in the AEL program at Adobe. My current term as an AEL is coming to an end but I do hope to be renewed for another term in the coming year! Here are some of the more notable things that happened:

  • I won an Adobe Education Leader Impact Award!
  • Adobe Creative Suite 5 was released!
  • Adobe Education Leader Summer Institute 2010!
  • A bunch of positive news gave the Flash Platform a nice boost.
  • Adobe MAX 2010!
  • The Adobe Education Exchange was launched!
  • Flash Player 10.1 and AIR 2.0 were released!
  • Apple reverses the 3.3.1 clause forbidding cross-compiled applications in the App Store.
  • Adobe reports record earnings for 2010!
  • Bunch of really cool stuff coming in 2011!

Fractured Vision Media, LLC

Great year for FVM! A lot of the projects I took on in the past for FVM have been all over the place, technically, but this year was a huge focus on Flash Platform technologies – specifically Adobe AIR. As a result of this, FVM has had the best year ever in terms of revenue and I have felt much more confident in my ability to pick and choose clients. It is a great point in the life of a business when you are able to turn down specific, problem clients if you choose to do so!

This was also a nice, balanced year for FVM CD releases with both the community compilation “Emergent Collective One” and the An Early Morning letter, Displaced EP “6Threads” being made available. I have high hopes that next year will also be productive in this area.

Notable items:

  • Put out a call for community music submissions for a CD compilation through Fractured Vision Media.
  • Fractured Vision Media releases “Emergent Collective One” – the community compilation audio CD!
  • CodeBass was born!
  • An Early Morning Letter, Displaced releases the 6Threads EP through Fractured Vision Media!

Personal Tidbits

I almost feel as though my personal life has taken a large hit due to all of my other activities for the year. Time goes by so quickly… I hope to slow things down a bit in 2011 to spend more time with my family…

2010 saw the birth of my second child (and second daughter!), Lily Seraphina Labrecque, in February! After which, I spent an extended period of time out of the office on parental leave. That’s the major stuff. No personal tragedies, thank God.

FAILURES!

What didn’t I get to get to do? Well, I had set forth a number of goals in my 2009 retrospective. Here’s what didn’t happen!

  • Was all fired up to learn Git inside and out. Only glazed the surface.
  • Unit testing? Forget about it…
  • More time for photography? Didn’t happen.
  • Strangling Strangers? Got absorbed into An Early Morning Letter, Displaced.

Plans for Next Year…

Already, 2011 is looking as though it will surpass 2010 so far as professional activities go:

  • I’m under contract with Packt Publishing to write a book around Flash Platform and Android!!! This is going to eat up a ton of my time during the first half of the year!
  • Maybe time to really get some TDD going on… (must get in this.)
  • Already registered for 360|Flex in Denver this coming Spring!
  • Adobe MAX 2011, anyone???
  • Emergent Collective Two? (announced at FITC Unconference at Adobe MAX but need to nail down specifics. Will be a slightly different process.)
  • New An Early Morning letter, Displaced full-length? (maybe… not sure I have enough time… 2012?)
  • Probably a million little things I haven’t any inkling of yet!

Have a Merry Christmas… see you in… THE FUTURE!!!

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