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Now Microsoft Attempts Alchemy

Posted by Sravan | July 7, 2009 .

Some of you may remember that Adobe started a project called Alchemy towards the end of last year. The toolkit can be used to cross-compile C/C++ code to ActionScript. Doom was ported to Flash by Mike Welsh and it remains the single most glorious use case of Alchemy. (Mike’s Doom version recently won the FHM’s 2009 Web Game Awards. Unrelated: Official iPhone Doom is coming soon.)

According to the Adobe Alchemy page they “are making this software available to gauge community interest in Alchemy and welcome your feedback.” Alchemy sounded like a great idea. Porting legacy libraries, old games written in C/C++ to AS. Reusing, recycling. While I haven’t done a thorough foraging, from what I have seen and heard, rather not seen and not heard, looks like it didn’t click very well.

Mary Jo Foley of ZDNet wrote a few days ago about a Microsoft project codenamed Alchemy. This Alchemy is expected to bring rich-media capabilities of Silverlight to Windows Mobile phones and other devices that use the Windows Embedded Compact platform. Mary hasn’t cited her sources, but she wrote that, “Alchemy also will allow developers to use Silverlight technologies on Embedded Compact devices without requiring them to run in a browser.”

Which is Silverlight apps running outside the browser.

Alchemy has been practiced since time immemorial without much success. Only time can tell whether we can succeed.

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