Aral Balkan has came up with a new data exchange format for Flash codenamed - SWX. The first beta was released few days ago, and it caused instant contraversy among people in remoting community. Since there are tons of various ways to do asynchronous data communication in Flash (LoadVars, XML, Remoting, JSON, SOAP, XML-RPC, and PHPObject) who actually needs new one? The idea behind it is actually pretty neat, and after some flaming, Patrick and Aral decided to
work together (update: As Aral commented my post, it was April 1st joke. Dough!).
SWX uses PHON (PHP Object Notation) which uses native PHP data structure (less serialization and deserialization). Flash sends data to the server with loadMovie() trough POST and receives back SWF file which contains data in native SWF bytecode. After that you can access it just like it was regular data inside loaded movieClip, and you can display a determinate progress indicator on a service call.
I am really interested how things will go on with this project since this sounds like a great way to replace slow XML loading/parsing in Flash Lite apps.