After a 3 part video regarding Thermo appeared in youtube many developers got excited about the product and started blogging about it. So FlexNotes also watched the video and read the blog posts with eagerness and anticipation.The author even had an imaginary conversation with a developer (referred to as D) proficient in many technologies as well as managing large scale projects. He also runs his own company.
Disclaimer: The conversation between FL and D that you are going to read is a work of fiction. It does not bear any resembalance to anyone living or dead in real world.Please stop reading further from the point where it starts hurting your feelings, sentiments etc.
FL: Do you know when Thermo is coming?
D(Dev) :No, we don’t.
FL: Have you really tried it out ?
D: No, but I have seen a video on the YouTube.
FL: But you have posted in your blog divdavdev.com that Thermo will generate bad code. How do you know that ?
D: Any such thing that is designer friendly is bound to produce bad code. Just like any WYSIWYG editor.
FL: Do you intend to use it in your organisation for developing RIAs, along with Flex builder?
D: Look, its a designers’ only product that helps a novice to draw a very fanciful image of an application in Photoshop and then import it and convert it into a working Flex project, of course by adding interactivity to it. So its only good for designers who do not know MXML or AS 3.0.But we don’t need it as we are very efficient in writing code in Flex builder to generate what we want.Hence WE do not need it.
FL: May be your designers will need it.
D: We don’t have a full time designer. Whenever we have any design requirements we just ask any freelancer to do it. That’s all.
FL: What do you do when design related change requests come from clients ? Do you send it to the designers again for changes ?
D: We try to do it ourselves. Once the main design has been done, it is easy to make small changes in Photoshop. Then again we always ask the clients to consider bad effects of changing UI such as increase in loading time, decrease in performance which will lead to more development efforts etc.
FL: Do the clients always agree ?
D: Most of the time they do.
FL: What happens if the client does not agree ?
D: We make necessary changes ourselves. Chink our best java developer knows Photoshop a little.We ask to him to make the small changes. He likes it. You should see his some of his photo editing capabilities in flickr.
FL: But RIA without designers does not sound very promising?
D: Actually we are trying very hard find very best designers, but so far we have no luck?
FL: What are your requirements ?
D: Very few. He should know Flex 2 (both MXML and Actionscripting) very well and must have some knowledge in one Server side language and should know one database.While we would be certainly happy if he has some experience in Swing, Hibernate or JSF but that is not mandatory. But he must know about design patterns.
FL: You expect a designer to know all that?
D: We want someone to work in our team with team spirit and all our team members are conversant with that.
FL: Do you think Thermo will introduce new way of developing RIAs?
D: It is difficult to say anything about that right now .
FL: It is being speculated that once Thermo comes out designers would take care of all design, UI and Interactivity related tasks which will leave developers to concern about all logic and database related things. Do you think this is possible ?
D: It is a very difficult thing to achieve because for that Thermo has to produce readable and maintainable code just as we developers do.
FL: And who says if the code is up to the standard ?
FL: Are you afraid of the fact that once Thermo comes, some of the RIA market will go to designers or in some cases they will control a considerable portions of any applications to be developed using Flex ?
D: Let me make this very clear. We rule the enterprise application development world. Mere designers armed with Photoshop and Thermo can’t take it away from us. We won’t simply let them have any of it. They can keep learning and publishing nice tutorials in their pretty blogs but that’s it.