One of the hottest application suites to hit the design community since Adobe was born is now upon us. A.viay.com is a well executed visionary attempt at becoming the ‘CS3’ of web apps. And I’m not sure how it happened, but while Adobe wasn’t paying attention this group may have just snatched the market.
We all love web apps, as long as you’re connected they provide cheap, fast and less resource alternatives to desktop solutions. On top of that they store your data in the cloud, a good place for it if your computer ever crashes or is stolen.
My initial observations…
1) It’s Built on Flex/Flash 9
One thing Adobe has got to be proud of is that so far it looks like all the A.viary apps are being built using many of their products like Flex, Flash and Coldfusion. A while back I speculated that Adobe might simply try to buy these guys out rather than compete. If that’s the case, A.viary did themselves a big favor by using an all Adobe back-end.
2) It’s a Little Slow
One thing that’s always been annoying about Flash-based web apps is that the more robust of them take a long time to load. This isn’t a huge concern but it us annoying. They need to figure out a way to bench mark this app so that more of the loading happens while the user is operating the software, not waiting to use it.
3) You can Import Images from the Web
I used to be a big fan of Picnik.com but now that they charge your separately than Flickr does for a Pro Account, not so much. Since I already own Photoshop, I don’t feel the need to pay to be able to do the same things in a web app. That app should be free, even if it needs to run adds to pay for itself. A.viary (for now) is 100% free and overs a bucketload of functionality over Picnik.
4) It rethinks the ‘Work Window’
One flaw in a lot of new design software applications is that they either clone Adobe’s Photoshop or Corel’s Draw. With A.viary things are reminiscent of existing operands but you can tell the designers tried to diversify a bit. In the end the UI feels more like GIMP than Photoshop.
5. Key commands Work
One of the things that makes this suite so useful is that key commands work as if it were truly a desktop app. This definitely decreased the time it took me to get to know the software, and start using it to make something.
6. Filters / Layers / Effects fight club HD download
Nothing new here, if you’ve used Adobe, you’ve used most of these before. There are some unique ones though. What the heck is Kuwahara?
7. Undo is Fast
The system must cache your every step because Undo/Redo seems almost faster than most desktop apps!
8. Saving is Public/Private
Saving your files takes a page out of the book of most web applications by allowing you either to save your files privately or in the public gallery of A.viary users for all to see. You’re also given the option to allow others to edit. This is cool but I wish there were more granular control. For instance if, I wanted my friend Mike to collaborate with me on a design but not the whole world I’d be out of luck.
All in all the A.viary product line looks impressive and is poised to really disrupt the industry!