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Adobe Releases Flash 11 And Air 3 Betas

Adobe yesterday made betas builds available for Flash 11 and Air 3, which tout some fairly significant improvements and feature additions. Perhaps the most interesting is the inclusion of Stage3D APIs (codenamed “Molehill”) which are a set of low-level, GPU accelerated 3D APIs that can enable high performance rendering of advanced 3D scenes. Adobe, in conjunction with Frima Studios has put together a demo of what this can achieve – we’ve embedded it past the break.

The inclusion of native support for 64-bit operating systems and browsers is also welcome news for performance and works on Windows, Mac and Linux in the new versions of Flash and Air. The last point of note is the inclusion of H.264/AVC software encoding for cameras, this will allow higher quality real-time communications from within Flash player.

Jump the break for that demonstration video of Stage3D as well as a full list of improvements in Flash 11 and Air 3. You can download the beta builds of Flash 11 here and Adobe Air 3 here.

[Via 9to5 Mac]


Performance and 3D

Stage3D APIs ("Molehill") for Flash Player
A new set of low-level, GPU-accelerated 3D APIs that enable advanced 3D experiences and improved 2D performance across devices through the Adobe Flash Platform runtimes.

Cubic Bezier Curves
Using the cubicCurveTo drawing API, developers can easily create cubic Beziers without requiring custom ActionScript code.

64-bit Support
Native support for 64-bit operating systems and 64-bit web browsers on Linux, Mac OS, and Windows.

Linux Vector Printing
Currently supported on Windows and MAC you can now print rich and crisp images on Linux.

Media/Real Time Communications

G.711 Audio Compression for Telephony
Support interoperability with legacy phone system (through Flash Media Gateway, FMG) and other third-party clients (through open RTMP protocol) without the need of transcoding.

H.264/AVC SW Encoding for Camera
Stream beautiful video from your computer’s camera with higher compression efficiency and industry-wide support, enabling both high quality real-time communications (e.g., video chat and video conferencing) and live video broadcasts from within Flash Player.

Language/VM

JSON (JavaScript Object Notation)
Enables ActionScript programmers to take advantage of fast parsing and generation of JSON-formatted text to represent their data. Take existing code written for the JSON interface provided by ECMAScript 5th edition and drop the code, with minimal or no modification, into an Actionscript project.

Garbage Collection Advice
Provides a simple facility with which AS3 code can advise the GC on when to schedule the disruptive end-of-GC pause.

Socket Progress Events
Provide a means by which content can determine how many bytes remain in the AS Socket's write buffer. Provide an event which will inform content whenever data is removed from the AS Socket's write buffer so that it may easily monitor the status of the write buffer without having to set up a timer and manually poll the size remaining in the AS Socket's write buffer.

Security

Secure Random Number Generator
Generate secure random numbers that are cryptographically as strong as the underlying operating system. Utilizing native OS APIs this feature will be used by Flash Player on the desktop and mobile platforms (Android) by Flash Platform Services.

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