Adobe AIR is a virtual machine that runs AIR applications. That may not mean much to you so I’ll try to explain by analogy. AIR is similar to the Adobe Flash Player. The Flash Player is a plugin that you install on your computer and most mobile devices. Once you have the Flash Player you can run games/applications that are built for the Flash Player.
While the Flash Player is a plugin for the browser you can think of AIR as a plugin for the operating system. A user can install Adobe AIR – it itself is an application. Once AIR is installed you can run applications built to run inside Adobe AIR.
The greatest advantage that AIR offers is cross platform compatibility. The AIR runtime is built to run on Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, and Linux – sorta . Each platform/OS has it’s own specific version of AIR built to run in that particular environment. That’s a lot of work for Adobe to manage. The advantage is that a developer can create one application that can be published to each platform without any modifications.
Read more of polygeek’s handy guide to understanding Adobe Air from a client’s perspective..
Adobe AIR Development Center
Share your development knowledge, see what other developers are creating, and ask the Adobe AIR developer community for help with your coding questions.
This wiki is the place to find solutions for frequently asked questions about Adobe AIR.
Adobe AIR Free Book Download
A pocket guide resource to Adobe AIR