One of the main themes of the Gumbo release is RAD for Data Centric Developers. The new Client Data Management (CDM) feature coming in Flex 4 super-simplifies how you work with data on the server.
Developers using LiveCycle Data Services have known for years about the incredible power and productivity that the Data Management features of LCDS provide for data-centric applications.
The LiveCycle Data Services and Flex Builder teams have been worked very closely together and with Gumbo, all Flex developers can now make use of at least the client-side functionality provided by this powerful and mature feature set.
However, Gumbo Client Side Data Services, when combined with LiveCycle Data Services backing your Gumbo applications, will provide cutting edge productibity PLUS enterprise scalability, power, real-time messaging, change management, conflict management, client-client sync, paging, and all the other powerful capabilities LiveCycle Data Services provides today. (And the next major release of LiveCycle Data Services will add some exciting new major capabilities in the 2009 timeframe).
Using the new Services Explorer in Gumbo, you can now bind UI components in your application to operations on the server. CDM then manages a CDM data store bound to this operation, allowing on-demand fetching of data for easy and efficient scrolling through large collections of data, change tracking allowing users to “un-do” actions, and automation of the common CRUD (create, read, update, & delete) functions that usually need to be hand-coded.
Creating, updating, and deleting data is done within the CDM data store so that when you’re ready to update the back end system, a single call to the client data management’s commit() method handles synchronizing all of the changes for you. It all works against multiple server types (like LiveCycle Data Services, ColdFusion, PHP, as well as SOAP and XML over HTTP) and produces straightforward ActionScript interfaces that you can use yourself, or simply let the tool do the work for you.
The next version of LiveCycle Data Services will work seamlessly with Gumbo, adding support for something called Adobe data model. This is similar to a UML, but developers can also define behaviors such as validations, etc. Validations can be defined once on the model, but will be validated on the Flex client as well as the LCDS server.
You no longer have to create AS VO and service classes, they are automatically generated for you from the model. The generated code is visible to developers and can be easily extended to provide your own behavior.
The really cool thing is that when you use LiveCycle Data Services on the server side, you no longer have to implement custom Java assembler code to provide data management capabilities.
For each model entity defined, we automatically create the assemblers on data model deploy from Gumbo - all out of the box. The LiveCycle Data Services server uses the data model to provide this functionality.
The data model can be deployed from Flex Builder (or dropped to a folder in LCDS) to an active LC DS server dynamically. You don’t have to worry about configuring destinations, writing Java code, etc. We automatically create the destinations from the data model and you're done. Nothing could be simpler.
FlexBuilder will provide a new feature called the Services Browser. The data model will be available as services from which you can drag and drop to a design view to create Flex applications.
Stay tuned for more, but 2009 promises to be a VERY exciting year for RIA developers. RAD and RIA meet enterprise-caliber data centric development.
Just freshly released and made live available for download today is the Adobe LiveCycle Data Services ES 2.6.1 release. Get it here: http://www.adobe.com/products/livecycle/dataservices.
This release consists mainly of bug fixes, but also includes an update to the "Integrating Flex applications with portal servers" chapter from the "Adobe LiveCycle Data Services ES 2.6 Developer Guide" which contains new information about using a portal server in a federated portal architecture. Download the PDF file to obtain this update.
This release also includes and update to the "Using the Remoting Service" chapter from the "Adobe LiveCycle Data Services ES 2.6 Developer Guide" describes a resolution to bug BLZ-231 for using the AMFConnection API to call remote objects from Java applications. Download the PDF file to obtain this update. For more information on the AMFConnection Java class, see the AMFConnection API reference.