I guess all the big wheels these days are into the new RIA desktop deal with Adobe Air, JavaFX, and Mozilla’s Prism. I definitely see the perspective they’re trying to achieve, but it seems to me none of them are there yet. The concept is to bring the web to the desktop more or less, and all three have a different approach to it. Air is allowing flex or regular html, css, js, where javascript acts more like a server side language. JavaFX is more or less still Java. Prism appears to be just an embedded browser.

My personal opinion Prism has the best chance right now of successfully accomplishing this. However I have to say, if you really want to do any of the things these technologies do you could consider just creating an empty application with an embedded web browser. In the install just give it the url you want to link to. I’ve seen VB does this very nicely and flash is supported. (why shouldn’t it be, its just an IE browser embedded). Flash embedded in HTML is something Prism and Adobe Air have struggled with thus far. I’m not sure about other platforms and languages, but it works nicely on Windows with a very small VB application and install with nothing but an embedded browser.

Moral of the story: Much of the functionality you are trying to achieve with these products can be quickly and easily achieved by other means. Especially if you need to embed flash into html, consider doing this. I’m also interested to know if this will work in any other languages so that it can port nicely to other operating systems(Can Java or C?).