What is Adobe up to with AMF?
Ted Patrick (an Adobe Evangelist) wrote a blog post on the benefits of the AMF format and briefly mentioned that "There is some big AMF news coming in December". There is a lot of speculation on what exactly the news are going to be, so I thought I'd share my predictions. As many others commented in the blog post, I believe the news would be a opening up the protocol specification. Knowing how big companies usually do it, I suspect it is going to be a lot more than just the spec. Here's what I suspect it will include:
- AMF Format specification (published in the PDF format of course)
- Reference implementation (more than likely implemented in Java)
- Compliance test suite (so implementations can validate their accuracy)
- Certification guidelines (this would be in the form of getting Adobe's stamp of approval)
As for #3 (compliance test suite), some companies offer them as commercial products (Sun for instance used charge thousands for their test suites, not sure if they still do). I hope Adobe does not impose any fees for that.
If all of this is true, is this a good move for Adobe? Absolutely! Is it timed well? No. I think releasing just the AMF spec would be too little too late. There is an implementation of the protocol in all most popular languages (Java, .NET, PHP, Ruby, Python). It will definitely help the company to fight against the "proprietary" arguments, but in the end I do not think it is a big deal.
Just my $0.02.