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48 Ratings

Visual Studio IDE

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326 Ratings
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Score 6.9 out of 101

Visual Studio IDE

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326 Ratings
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Score 8.9 out of 101

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Likelihood to Recommend

Adobe AIR

A specific scenario where Adobe air would be a good candidate, is a project that requires the same experience to be delivered via mobile, desktop/kiosk, and browser (via flash). And one in which the assets are all created using Adobe software (photoshop, illustrator, etc.)

A scenario where AIR is less appropriate would be a performance-intensive app/game, and especially any type of project that includes 3D assets. While there are 3D frameworks for Adobe AIR, there are many other solutions that would be much better suited for that task (like Unity or Unreal Engine for example).
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Visual Studio IDE

Visual Studio is well suited for: Developing console, system, mobile, or web applications using a cross-section of popular languages, with a special emphasis on C#. Managing resources in Azure or SQL Server databases. Automated, performance, and unit testing code. Code analytics (cyclomatic complexity, etc). Visual Studio is not as good at Proprietary programming languages with poor third-party support (EG, can't make a Swift app - you can make a Xamarin app on iOS). While one can use Visual Studio to write AI-integrated apps, actual data science applications wouldn't use Visual Studio (EG, not known for writing R applications).
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Pros

  • Smooth transition from Flash/Actionscript 3, and ability to port older Flash projects to AIR with little to no code changes.
  • Ability to integrate custom and third party native extensions (ANE files) provides access to hardware and other APIs otherwise only exposed via native java/obj-c/swift.
  • Ability to code and test within a single IDE (Flash / Flash Builder / Flash Develop) makes it extremely easy to set up a project and development environment. The ability to use the Flash timeline is a huge advantage when doing animation.
  • The abundance of AS3/Flash examples and tutorials online provide a vast resource compared to other hybrid solutions.
Thomas Gorence profile photo
  • Integration into git and in particular VSTS (now named Azure DevOps) is amazing. The experience is seamless and works very well.
  • Backward compatibility is better than ever, so there's less risk of breaking applications as you upgrade from different versions of Visual Studio.
  • The development experience in Visual Studio is second-to-none. This really is the gold standard for IDEs with tight integration into the Microsoft stack, built-in unit testing tools, debugging and diagnostics capabilities, ... the list goes on. Everything is at the developer's finger-tips.
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Cons

  • Over the course of months/years, various security exploits and other issues are discovered and patched in AIR, often requiring you to rebuild and resubmit mobile apps to the various storefronts. This happens often enough that it's worth mentioning as a major con.
  • While development on Adobe AIR seems to be fairly constant, there is very little communication between the community and Adobe regarding the future and general support of AIR. The track record of Flash (and particularly Flash Mobile) does not inspire much confidence that Adobe intends to support Flash/AIR for years to come.
  • Adobe AIR does not seem to perform as well (in terms of raw performance, memory usage, framerates, responsiveness, etc.) as other hybrid solutions for certain tasks. For example using shaders tends to be experimental still, and graphic/animation intensive projects often require the use of third party frameworks such as Starling.
Thomas Gorence profile photo
  • System performance of Visual Studio leaves some room to be desired. I understand that it has a lot going on, but the system resource usage, load times and sometimes general responsiveness of VS leaves room to be desired.
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Likelihood to Renew

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic
Visual Studio IDE10.0
Based on 3 answers
VS is the best and is required for building Microsoft applications. The quality and usefulness of the product far out-weight the licensing costs associated with it.
Gordon Lo profile photo

Usability

Adobe AIR7.0
Based on 1 answer
Although Adobe AIR is just an SDK without an actual "UI" it's commonly used within Flash, Flash Builder, or FlashDevelop. Considering the integration with Flash IDE, there are very few tools that can compete with its features.
Thomas Gorence profile photo
Visual Studio IDE9.0
Based on 1 answer
The thing I like the most is Visual Studio doesn't suffer from Microsoft's over eager marketing department who feel they need to redesign the UI (think Office and windows) which forces users to loose large amounts of productivity having to learn software that they had previously known.
John P. Maher profile photo

Support

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic
Visual Studio IDE5.0
Based on 1 answer
The support consists of a forum. The problem with the forum is the categories are poorly designed and only reflect a subset of reality. So often you need to put a specific question in a general section. What makes this bad is your question gets reviewed by only the people who feel like it (it seems). If someone with knowledge of your issue sees your question you are in luck. If not, time to look elsewhere.
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Alternatives Considered

Since Adobe AIR can be used with the Flash IDE, there are not many other solutions with such a robust toolset. The ability to import layered photoshop files directly onto the stage, and then ability to animate and create movieclips within that IDE is an extremely valuable resource. Not many other solutions offer this. The closest competitor would be Unity3D, however animating within Unity is vastly different.

Compared to PhoneGap/Cordova, the pricing and build process is very similar, however since PhoneGap/Cordova rely on browser rendering (like webkit), the types of UI possible can be limited, and performance lacking compared to AIR.

The biggest comparison is when developing graphic/animation intense programs and apps. For these, Unity3D and Unreal tend to be a much better solution.
Thomas Gorence profile photo
Visual Studio provides a variety of plugins which helps coders to code in different programming languages. The speed of the IDE is much faster when compared to other IDE's like NetBeans and Bracket. It helps to keep revisions of the file using source control like Git and Subversion. Live Unit Testing makes it easier to test your application, fix the errors and assures you that you are on the right path.
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Return on Investment

  • It's made creating training apps easier and the apps more portable, saving time. No need to create apps for each platform.
  • Since it enables us to use in house talent to create apps, we can save on some outsourcing.
  • Cost of the license is not too expensive compared to the alternatives.
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  • Fast paced development is possible.
  • Works well with version control systems.
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Pricing Details

Adobe AIR

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

Visual Studio IDE

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details