Expression 2 is out


Microsoft released the Expression 2.0  suite of products today.  I’ve been using expression since last year and religiously updating whenever a new beta or preview version of any of the applications as they were released.  At first I wasn’t a big fan of the tools, therapist but over time I’ve really come to enjoy them and they have become my default tools to use for web and Silverlight development.  Combined with Visual Studio 2008 it all becomes a powerful environment.   Now that I’m learning how to develop and design in WPF I’m using Blend all the time to put together my UI objects.

It was hard for me to make the switch.  I’ve been a Flash developer all the way back to 1996, look when Future Splash was first released.  I’ve been using Adobe Photoshop since version 2.0  I started out using Freehand and migrated to Illustrator about 5 years ago.  I use Adobe’s tools everyday.  So, why do I like the Expression products?  They work, they work really well for creating for the web and desktop.  I don’t do very much in the way of print anymore and Expression doesn’t have all that legacy print world stuff in the way.

I’ve never been a fan of Actionscript.  I took the time to learn it, but have always found myself spending way to much time debugging some random error or trying to figure out the odd way of working with my movies DOM.  So when Blend, WPF and eventually Silverlight came out, it all just felt more natural.  I have been developing ASP.NET sites for several years and tools and languages just make more sense to me. 

Don’t get me wrong though, I think what Adobe is doing is impressive too.  It’s just that I don’t want to create applications in Actionscript.  No matter how cool AIR, I’m just not feeling it.  I do like really like that if I create an AIR app that it will just run on a Mac, PC or Linux machine.  That part is something powerful.  I think the Open Screen Project is a step in the right direction to get Flash and AIR running on everything else. 

So now the only challenge I have with all of this is that I don’t like IIS.  I really like Apache.  I think Linux with Apache is the only real way for a individual like myself to work online.  Microsoft’s web server solutions are simply not cost effective for me as a person.   Getting a ISP with IIS hosting is way more expensive and cumbersome.   It’s the last mile for me in regards to web development and design.   My current host Dreamhost is the absolute best and because of that I do a most of my personal work in PHP.

Well, it looks like I got a little of topic.  Anyway, congratulations to MS for getting Expression 2 out.  It’s a wonder product suite.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply