Abobe Air may not get a lot of attention but maybe it should. The amount of good free applications available is rather surprising. Generally the applications are light weight, are easy to use and have good and intuitive user interfaces. This article list a very broad selection of useful tools based in Abobe Air. You will find anything from image editors, mind mappers, html editors, sql admin, snippet management, snapshot creaters etc. Please comment if you know a good Air tool that is not on the list!
You need Adobe AIR installed. If you don’t have it, it can be downloaded from here.
Designers on Air
This is a great application for taking snapshots of any webpage. You can configure the snapshot sizes & lets you choose whether the snapshot be a thumbnail, browser size or the full page.
With WebKut you can take snapshots of an entire webpage, parts of it or a selection. The tool’s interface helps a lot by showing the size of the area selected, letting the user to choose the image format & quality.
Pixus is an excellent pixel ruler application that enables you to measure the size of any object. With browser skins, overlay mode and screen size presets, you can also preview how your design will look in the real environment.
The Calilper floats above other applications on screen and can be used to measure anything on your monitor. Draggable, Rotates through 360°, Pixel Perfect Measurements, Floats above all other applications.
PixelWindow is a simple and lightweight overlay application for measuring elements on your screen in pixels.
Boks provides a User Interface for Blueprint CSS’s framework.
This is a simple application that lets you generate a CS3 or Web 2.0 style icon, in only 3 easy steps. Pick color, type characters, and save it. Icon is generated in 4 different sizes.
ImageSizer is a batch image processor tool built to resize, optimize and rename multiple JPG files. Once your images are processed, they can be exported as a single ZIP file, making it convenient to transfer groups of images on the internet.
With this tool you can create a good looking Tilt-shift images.
Splashup Light ia a simple image editor that allows you to change levels, contrast/brightness, hue saturation, text editing, and shapes. It helps to enhance and improve your existing photos.
JustResizeIt! introduces a brand new way of resizing images – just drag and drop them!
This application allows you to save images from the web simply by dragging them.
Fractal4D allows you to draw really awesome fractal swirls that can then be exported as a vector file or in PNG format.
Livebrush is a motion-based drawing tool. Toss graphics around the screen or elegantly swing the brush around your cursor. There are over 100 styles and decorations that can all be customized and shared. You can even develop your own motion behaviors. Then save your designs as vector or high-resolution png.
This is a batch image resizer that can handle JPG, GIF & PNG files. Images can be resized to a custom size or by a ratio. The output image format, quality & name can also be set.
Xe-IMG Editor is a simple and free image editor. Import .jpg .png .gif .swf and URL-extern Photos supported – Zoom Photo, Mask Image supported – Filters Sharpen, Enhance, Embossing supported – RGB Color settings, Alpha transparent supported – Set Backgroundcolor, Statusbar, Info…
With CleVR Sticher you can create a wide panoramic photo. It also has basic photograph editing capabilities such as an option to correct/adjust exposures (for color matching).
With Flickr Flipper you can search for Flickr photos and also search for photos from specific Flickr users. It uses Papervision to display the photos one at a time and even allows you to download the photo to your computer.
This application allows you to create high-resolution images of Flash content stored on your hard drive.
FLV is one of the most popular streaming video formats these days. Using RichFLV you can edit FLV & MP3 files and export them to some other formats like SWF. The application allow you ti merge multiple files.
Balsamiq Mockups lets you create website mockups in an environment that makes you feel as if you’re simply drawing a picture. The desktop Air version is $79, but you can try it for free (although you will not be able to save any of your files without a license key).
iPlotz is an application for wireframing and creating clickable and navigable mockups of websites and app interfaces. This is a great technique for communication with clients before the actual coding phase sets in. iPlotz also comes with collaboration and project management tools for designers working in teams.
This tools created an overview of all the fonts installed in your computer. You are able to type in some text and preview it with the individual fonts and it makes font selection easier. You can get rid of the fonts that don’t like by pressing the x next to them so you are left with a smaller list of fonts to choose from.
Contrast-A is a great Adobe AIR application for designers wanting to easily create color schemes for their design. The tool comes with a contrast checker based on WCAG standards for accessible color contrast ratios.
COLOURlovers have build an Adobe AIR interface to make it possible to reach the huge collection of named colours and colour palettes on their website from the website. Clicking a palette will take you to the website.
With Kuler Air you can browse the color themes in Adobe Kuler, sign in to your account & manage your themes. You can also, import themes from Kuler Desktop directly into Adobe Creative Suite 3 (Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop).
This is an application for generating & saving color palettes. It can be used for creating your own color library. You can edit, re-arrange and duplicate the color palettes.
Developers and Air
A tool for learning, editing, and testing regular expressions. There’s an online version also doing more or less the same. It provides a small library for special characters, character classes and more.
A free, multi-platform administration tool for your SQLite Databases
SQLite Sorcerer helps you perform the primary admin functions for your SQLite database.
Snippely is a basic text and code organizational tool. Instead of storing bits of code, quick notes, and memos in text files all over your hard drive, this application will let you save and organize “snippets” in one convenient location.
A free, open-source debugger for Flash, Flex and AIR. It includes live editing, method testing and a tree structure, among many other features.
htmlText Editor is mainly used by Flex developers, it provides a shortcut to having htmlText generated in a WYSIWYG type editor.
For those of you, who are fed up of testing their designs in different browser, this is a nifty utility that would save your time.
Communication and Efficiency
This is a great app for managing you Twitter account(s) – and currently one of the most popular. It lets you update, post images, shorten links, and group those you follow.
Mindomo Desktop is a mind mapping application which can be deployed onto your desktop and used across Linux, Mac OS, and Windows operating systems. It allows you to work on your mind maps offline.
Track time on projects and track time on clients in this free but very useful desktop widget. Export time reports to XML or CSV for use in other applications.
An application for tracking times worked on a project, that works with a timer and generates timesheets & expense reports.
Most people are busy and needs a way to keep track of even simple tasks. A task manager application will help to get organized better. MiniTasks is a very simple task manager where you simply write the tasks, group them with seperators and click the ones you completed.
Another very simple to-do-list application that reminds you your tasks. Besides entering, editing & clearing tasks, you can set an alarm for a task.
The Snackr app creates a desktop crawl for the different feeds the user loads into it. Giving a continuously scrolling ticker of the different article titles filtering in from your feeder in no particular order. Adding a dab of fun into the daily managing your reads.
GMDesk is an application that lets you run Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Maps as a stand-alone application to do all your mail handling, calendar event reading etc with.
Klok is a very feature rich application that helps managing projects, keeping track of the tasks & getting reports on them. You can get a free personal edition.
FEAT is an application that helps freelancers calculate hourly rates and project pricing estimates. You can define your expenses like salaries, utilities, tax & mention the profit margin you expect and it gives you the hourly rate you must be charging. FEAT also offer a pricing wizard that helps you define a price for a project.
Snippage is an application for creating desktop gadgets from any part of a website. You choose any part of the website, select the refresh period & the gadget is created. You can use it for following parts of web pages that update often without having to load the entire page in your browser.
Relevant resources On Adobe AIR:
- Round-Up of Popular Articles About Adobe AIR Applications Around The Web
- Adobe AIR Bible (Bible (Wiley))
- 35 Adobe AIR Tutorials for Web Developers
- Adobe AIR 1.5 Cookbook: Solutions and Examples for Rich Internet Application Developers – (PDF Version)
- Flex 3 Cookbook: Code-Recipes, Tips, and Tricks for RIA Developers (Adobe Developer Library)
- 60+ Useful Adobe AIR Applications You Should Know
- Professional Adobe Flex 3 (Wrox Programmer to Programmer)