Astro (Flash Player 10) to get typed arrays, Flash Player device convergence, and animated IK (bones) in Diesel (Flash CS4)

Adobe just mentioned at the keynote at Flash on the Beach that Astro is to get typed arrays. From what I remember, this wasn't mentioned at the keynotes at MAX. This is something that Flash coders have been asking for (and which other languages like Haxe have provided) for some time now.

Typed arrays make debugging and maintaining your applications easier by giving you compile-time type safety when dereferencing an array and they will probably also result in compile type optimizations that will translate to performance improvements at run-time.

Also mentioned was 64 bit support and "device convergence" (with the Nokia N810 given as an example of the types of devices that Adobe will concentrate their mobile efforts on).

My understanding of "device convergence" is that in the future we will see more and more devices supporting the full version of the Flash Player as opposed to Flash Lite. This is already happening in devices such as my N800, which runs Flash Player 9 (and pretty darn well at that, too!)

I don't think Flash Lite is going away any time soon as it has uses far beyond the playback of Flash content on mobile devices (it can be used to create phone UIs, wallpapers, screensavers, etc., and I believe that we will see it used in this capacity for some time to come.) However, I'm confident that we will also see optimized versions of the full version of the latest Flash Player appear on mobile devices, perhaps even alongside Flash Lite, in order to give users a faithful rendering of web pages. Devices such as the Nokia N800 and the Apple iPhone already render web pages faithfully (sans Flash on the iPhone for the time being) and this is going to become a user expectation. I was just talking to Paul Betlem, senior director of Flash Engineering at Adobe, during the break and he confirmed my suspicions on this.

Finally, Richard Galvan, technical product manager of Flash, demoed (for the first time) animated IK in Flash. I'm going upload the video of that in a little bit. Animating bones in Diesel (Flash CS4) is going to be as easy as tweening any other object. In other words, a piece of cake! :)