Excited about the next version of Flex Builder and it's friends

I’ve just been reading about the next version of Flex Builder (code named “Gumbo”) that some lucky people have just got their hands on at MAX NA ‘08, it sounds like there are some great new features.

I’m looking forward to the FlexUnit integration and new network monitoring functionality, they’re the kind features that could make some serious improvements to development efficiency. The network monitor is particulary important to me, as my Flex development is all about sending and receiving data over the network, much like 99% of Flex apps out there.

But, what could be a real winner for future product development is the new Client Data Management (CDM) in Flex Builder, if it works well it sounds like it could be a very useful integrated and supported way of managing large data sets on the client from a remote source.

The new name for the designer -> developer product that was code named Thermo is “Flash Catalyst“, which is a great name for this product. Flash Catalyst will be used to take the output of traditional application design such as multi-layered Photoshop files and turn them into working Flex prototypes. It’s the kind of thing that could seriously aid in the designer -> developer transfer, I expect we’ll see an abundance of great looking Flex and AIR apps with wonderful user interation as a result of the developer being able to better use the designer’s output.

CoCoMo has also been officially released, which looks like a fantastic collaboration SDK. I hope to make use of CoCoMo in the future.