I’m sure many of you have hear of Adobe AIR (Adobe Integrated Runtime), but it may be little more than a buzz word to some. What I intend to do is provide a brief overview of what AIR is and what it does and also why it will be important in this mobile age we are coming in to.

To begin, unless your a developer, integrated runtime probably means nothing to you. A runtime environment is essentially a virtual environment where code runs. A good example of a runtime is the Java Runtime Environment (this annoying updates that Windows will bother you incessantly about).

The Java Runtime Environment is obviously to run Java code, but AIR is used for rich internet applications. So AIR is a runtime for Flash platform applications and also HTML/CSS/AJAX applications. Essentially what it does is allow you to take applications written in these various languages and, through AIR, run them on platforms supported by AIR. As of now, AIR supports a handful of platforms such as Android, iOS, Desktop (Mac/PC/Linux).

What it boils down to is you can take your Flash platform and HTML/CSS/Javascript applications and with little to no change in your code, make them into applications for mobile and desktop.