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What is a rich Internet application?

In the late nineties, "browsing the web" meant going online to read text and view static images. But that model was limiting. As the number of Internet-connected businesses and individuals increased, so did the demand for richer, more responsive user experiences.
In 2002, Macromedia coined the term rich Internet application (RIA). RIAs combine the flexibility, responsiveness, and ease of use of desktop applications with the broad reach of the web. RIAs provide a dynamic web experience that is rich and engaging, as well as interactive.Many web designers and developers use Adobe Flash or Adobe Flex, which are part of the Adobe Flash Platform, to build RIAs. Flash is an authoring environment for creating rich, interactive content for the web. Flex is a cross-platform development framework for creating RIAs. Content created with Flash and Flex is deployed using Adobe Flash Player. RIAs created in Flex, Flash, and even Ajax can also be taken to the desktop using the Adobe AIR desktop runtime. To learn more about RIAs, explore the resources below.

See RIAs in action

Edit your images online with the powerful RIA features in FotoFlexer, built with Adobe Flex.

Nike Air
Experience the feel of the Nike brand in this Adobe Flash site built by Big Spaceship.

Tour de Flex
Explore what you can do with Flex in this Adobe AIR application.


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