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Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Adobe and Mozilla to Open Source Flash Player Scripting Engine

Adobe will contribute source code to the Mozilla Foundation as the two organizations aim to establish a standard scripting language that developers can use to create interactive applications for Adobe's Flash Player and Mozilla's Firefox browser.

The plan calls for Adobe to hand over source code from its ActionScript Virtual Machine, the scripting language engine in its Flash Player, the organizations will announce Tuesday at the Web 2.0 Conference in San Francisco.

Mozilla will host a new open source project, called Tamarin, to accelerate the development of this standards-based approach for creating rich and engaging Web applications.

The Tamarin project will implement the final version of the ECMAScript Edition 4 standard language, which Mozilla will use within the next generation of SpiderMonkey, the core JavaScript engine embedded in Firefox, Mozilla?s free Web browser. As of today, developers working on SpiderMonkey will have access to the Tamarin code in the Mozilla CVS repository via the project page located at www.mozilla.org/projects/tamarin/. Contributions to the code will be managed by a governing body of developers from both Adobe and Mozilla.

"Adobe?s work on the new virtual machine is the largest contribution to the Mozilla Foundation since its inception," said Brendan Eich, chief technology officer, Mozilla Corporation, and creator of JavaScript. "Now web developers have a high-performance, open source virtual machine for building and deploying interactive applications across both Adobe Flash Player and the Firefox web browser. We?re excited about joining the Adobe and Mozilla communities to advance ECMAScript."

Tamarin implements the ECMAScript standard used by languages such as JavaScript, Adobe ActionScript, and Microsoft JScript, the primary languages developers use for building rich Internet applications. Adobe and Mozilla are both active participants in the ECMA International Programming Language technical committee (TC39-TG1) developing the ECMAScript Edition 4 (ES4) standard.

Adobe?s most recent virtual machine for ActionScript 3.0, a core component of Adobe Flash Player 9 released in June 2006, was built from the ground up to offer new performance and features, including more efficient memory utilization, faster application start-times, improved debugging and full runtime error reporting. The ActionScript Virtual Machine features a Just In Time (JIT) compiler that translates ActionScript bytecode to native machine code for maximum execution speed.

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