Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Decoding Adobe's Big Device Push

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the here-are-your-new-buttons dept.

GUI 181

nerdyH writes "Adobe yesterday chummed the waters around Flash and AIR as cross-platform app dev environments for mobile devices. It promised runtimes for several popular mobile OSes, including WinMo, Symbian, Palm webOS, and Android, with future RIM/Blackberry support hinted as well. Moreover, it reiterated its commitment to the Open Screen Project, an Adobe-led industry group that, if you deconstruct its name and look at its membership roster, appears tactically focused on enabling hardware acceleration of Flash/AIR on devices, as part of a larger strategy of making the runtimes ubiquitous as UI development frameworks for essentially every computer-like device with a user interface."

cancel ×

181 comments

First Post! (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29674933)

Woot I win!

Bullshit (-1, Offtopic)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29674949)

Flash is not open source yet.

Who said anything about Open Source? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675017)

Nobody said Flash is Open Source. So, what's the point of your childish outburst?

Re:Who said anything about Open Source? (4, Funny)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675053)

Oh, I'm sorry, I though this was an argument. I'm in abuse. Terribly sorry about that.

Re:Who said anything about Open Source? (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676713)

Well, get on with it!

Re:Bullshit (2, Informative)

Moridin42 (219670) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675125)

I think you should perhaps go back and read the summary carefully.

You're the first one to mention open source. Unless you think the story submitter spells source in a really eccentric fashion.

they should totally use arm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29674957)

they should totally use arm

Re:they should totally use arm (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675091)

They are. http://www.embeddedflash.com/?p=571
That was linked from beagleboard.org a few days ago.
Beagleboard uses the TI OMAP3530 processor using an ARM 8 core (and a bunch of other stuff).

Re:they should totally use arm (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675673)

The i.MX515 (Freescale's Cortex A8) announcement said it also had a full Flash implementation for ODMs. Part of yesterday's announcement included a list of ARM SoCs that now have full acceleration, for example H.264 acceleration using the DSP or video coprocessor and compositing offload to the GPU.

Seems like Adobe is waking up (4, Interesting)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675011)

With HTML5's video, audio and canvas elements, there will be less and less need for Flash in the future on the web. It seems like Adobe is realizing this as well and has decided to move the focus of Flash from mere embedded objects on web pages to a way of easily creating full, rich and cross-platform applications for both PC's and phones.

This coiuld work out pretty well for them in the end. I must admit clicking a game together using Flash and publishing it to every major platform sounds more attractive than the more traditional ways of developing software, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who's thinking this.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1, Funny)

raddan (519638) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675151)

Awesome. I can't wait until they partner with Cisco and rewrite IOS in Flash :P

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676185)

Awesome. I can't wait until they partner with Cisco and rewrite IOS in Flash :P

Any CCNA should know that the IOS is already in flash.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676659)

Awesome. I can't wait until they partner with Cisco and rewrite IOS in Flash :P

Any CCNA should know that the IOS is already in flash.

But not the configuration....

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676745)

Okay. Cisco 800. You go to it in your browser, and get a web page. This web page pops up a login window, which pops up a Java applet which will do many of your tasks. However, if you try to do a certain set of the tasks, it'll pop up a (new) web browser to take you to an old-style-Cisco in-browser web-based interface. With a separate login, if I recall correctly.

I'll take a Flash UI over that, I think.

More attractive for you... (2, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675341)

I must admit clicking a game together using Flash and publishing it to every major platform sounds more attractive

Slap it together and call it a day!

Never mind it doesn't take advantage of platform specific features. I'm sure users wouldn't care about THAT at all. I'm sure your sales will be just fine...

Sometimes easier things are just easier, not better.

Re:More attractive for you... (2, Informative)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675383)

Why wouldn't it take advantage of platform specific features? Flash's new "export to iPhone" function makes use of things like multitouch and the accelerometer just fine.

Re:More attractive for you... (2, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675721)

Why wouldn't it take advantage of platform specific features? Flash's new "export to iPhone" function makes use of things like multitouch and the accelerometer just fine.

But that's building a game targeted at one platform, a platform with multitouch and accelerometer (which would include the G1).

The original poster was talking about writing a game once, to deploy everywhere - which means not taking full advantage of the platform specific features, because you have to rely on the lowest common denominator of things available. Furthermore, games are highly pixel specific and having to code to non-fixed sizes can result in either wasted screen real estate or the game not working as well on some platforms. Again you are having to dumb down the thing because you can't be sure of some factors.

Using this platform as a base for iPhone games has a different issue, that you cannot make use of the standard UI elements that are sometime used for scoring or configuration screens.

Re:More attractive for you... (1)

Dog-Cow (21281) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676667)

PC games have, for decades now, been written to use locally available hardware when present and to handle different screen resolutions. Why must Flash be any different?

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (2, Interesting)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675357)

No offence, but you get what you pay for (in effort). I for one have zero interest ever buying a program based on Flash thanks to the slow, ugly, non-standard interfaces. I know I'm not alone on this either.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (3, Insightful)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675437)

Bejeweled was developed as a Flash game and has sold over 25 million copies [bbc.co.uk] . So surely there is a market for this type of application.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (2, Informative)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675669)

Bejeweled has also undergone heavy redevelopment, as do all popcap games. They are "demoed" on the web as flash games but what you buy on Win, Mac, iPhone, Palm, Xbox, etc, is developed for the platform.

Flash has it's uses, but as a cash purchase I don't think I'll hop on board.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29676035)

Or there is Club Penguin, which has done something like $50M / year in revenue. Clearly Flash has some (sizable) niches even if a gaggle of internet snobs don't approve of it. I don't see sites like that being rewritten in HTML 5 any time soon.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29676127)

You're absolutely correct. The multi-million dollar industry based on flash, as well as most web-based advertising beyond AdSense may as well shut up shop right now! WiiVault has spoken!

Seriously - do you, even now, think about what you've just said?

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (2, Interesting)

earnest murderer (888716) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675425)

There is that. There is also the notion that in a few short years most PC users won't be using PC's anymore. If Adobe (or anyone else for that matter) want to remain relevant to that group they're going to have to figure out exactly this cross platform issue before cell phones start driving external displays.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (5, Interesting)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675461)

With HTML5 not being supported by MS, and only certain codecs being supported by Apple, the video tag isn't worth shit, unfortunately.

Besides, flash video players are all about the bloat - look at youtube/hulu, you've got captions, annotations, ads, menus at the end, etc.

I haven't looked into the other new tags, but flash for video should have died years ago.

Last I checked embed src="file.ext" worked fine, and my browser loaded a plugin/full app to handle whatever it was. (Though it's not actually part of the spec, is it?)
It wasn't pretty, and it just played the video. But that's all I want. Sadly, everyone else loves "teh web 2.0" and demands all the bits and bobs.

We've had streaming protocols for ages that worked directly in the browser, or by opening up a media app. We can always improve the protocol and the codec without touching flash.

The problem is it's not about the content anymore. The content is the lure. No one wants to serve up site.com/videos/video1.mp4 through straight html. They want you to go to site.com, see ads, click around, add comments, see a list of related and sponsored videos, and maybe watch the actual video.

This is why flash (and similar) will live on, regardless of the alternatives.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (2, Insightful)

rsborg (111459) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676325)

With HTML5 not being supported by MS, and only certain codecs being supported by Apple, the video tag isn't worth shit, unfortunately.

Google ChromeFrame [google.com] will take care of recalcitrant IE. As far as Apple vs Mozilla goes, you can easily support both Firefox/Chrome/Opera/Safari with two seperate video encodes (ogg/h.264) and some browser capability detection. I know i've seen some very elegant solutions even with the current draft state of HTML5.

It's not the player, it's the upgrade cycle (3, Insightful)

krotscheck (132706) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675803)

HTML5 is kindof awesome, but even the most awesome technology is limited by the number of people who can use it. Unless the W3C or Microsoft or Google or the Mozilla Foundation manage to convince the world to upgrade their browsers with the speed that Adobe can upgrade the install base of the Flash Player, HTML5 is always going to play second fiddle.

Now according to Adobe, Flash Player 10 is at 94% adoption in mature markets, and that's about... what, 10-12 months after release? The HTML 5 spec was formally named in January 2008, and the original started in 2004. Admittedly- corporate IT departments (the big evil) are as unlikely to upgrade the Flash Player as they are the browser, but if it takes that long for anything to make it into HTML, Adobe will have already had several upgrade cycles to react, improve, and move on.

Having said that: we can always return to the days of browser specific web sites, and that'd force people to upgrade: "This website is optimized for [Insert favorite browser here], please change your browser".

Re:It's not the player, it's the upgrade cycle (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676207)

Actually since Adobe seems to do a better job than either Sun or any of the browser vendors in maintaining backward compatibility as a corporate IT guy I'm a LOT more likely to upgrade Flash than either Java or the browser. There's also a lot less enterprise stuff built for flash so it's lower risk, obviously that will change if Adobe gets their way with this initiative.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1)

agnosticnixie (1481609) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675881)

I'd rather people used SVG animation for games and video rather than putting it in HTML, seriously - I've been rather underwhelmed by the canvas and video tags and they tend to be as cpu hungry as flash.

Re:Seems like Adobe is waking up (1)

Rocketship Underpant (804162) | more than 4 years ago | (#29677045)

"With HTML5's video, audio and canvas elements, there will be less and less need for Flash in the future on the web."

I agree. But if Adobe were smart (and I don't hold out much hope), they would develop a new application as a successor to Flash that would allow designers with minimal programming skills to create Flash-like content and save it as pure HTML5, Canvas, and Javascript.

Actually, I'd really prefer it if Apple made such an app. But whoever does so first (and does a good job of it) is going to own the Internet.

Hopefully... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675027)

...they will learn something from squeezing Flash onto these embedded devices that can be used to help make the desktop edition less resource intensive.

ew (3, Funny)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675041)

Adobe yesterday chummed the waters around Flash and AIR as cross-platform app dev environments for mobile devices.

Literally?

Re:ew (4, Funny)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675229)

Is chumming the waters now a prerequisite before jumping the shark?

Re:ew (4, Funny)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675331)

In before lasers

Re:ew (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29676103)

It's always with the frickin' lasers.

Life in the slow lane (3, Insightful)

Wowsers (1151731) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675049)

Noooo. It's bad enough that Flash slows down and eats system resources in Windows, Mac's and Linux, now they want to inflict the same on underpowered mobile devices. That's sick!

Re:Life in the slow lane (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675187)

Agreed, Flash is a monster. Long live HTML5 and beyond!

Re:Life in the slow lane (1, Insightful)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675693)

Yes, because all of the previous HTML implementations were so nice to use and performant.

Oh and you never have to test them individually in each browser to make sure things work... right?

perhaps, but if not flash, Silverlight'll do it (4, Insightful)

Rob Y. (110975) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675231)

Presumably, if Adobe doesn't establish Flash as a cross-platform dev environment for mobiles, then Microsoft will manage to foist Silverlight as it's own bloated slow lane for mobile devices. And the same devs that give us IE-only web apps will start producing Silverlight-only stuff for mobiles.

Now maybe Miguel would disagree, but I think it's better to have a truly cross-platform bloated enviroment than to have a single-platform bloated environment (I assume Silverlight/Mono is at least close to Flash in bloat). Sure, I'd take streamlined before bloat, but cross-platform trumps streamlined.

By the way, aren't Android apps based on Java? Since when is that a paragon of efficiency? Or does Google use some kind of 'compiled to machine code' Java variant? Likewise WebOS apps - aren't they largely Javascript? Who said mobile device platforms weren't bloated already?

Re:perhaps, but if not flash, Silverlight'll do it (0)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675449)

Presumably, if Adobe doesn't establish Flash as a cross-platform dev environment for mobiles, then Microsoft will manage to foist Silverlight as it's own bloated slow lane for mobile devices. And the same devs that give us IE-only web apps will start producing Silverlight-only stuff for mobiles.

Not really analogous. IE is proprietary, but you don't need Microsoft software to run Silverlight apps. Moonlight (the Mono equivalent) is open source.

Now maybe Miguel would disagree, but I think it's better to have a truly cross-platform bloated enviroment than to have a single-platform bloated environment (I assume Silverlight/Mono is at least close to Flash in bloat). Sure, I'd take streamlined before bloat, but cross-platform trumps streamlined.

Who you callin' "single-platform"? [mono-project.com]

By the way, aren't Android apps based on Java? Since when is that a paragon of efficiency? Or does Google use some kind of 'compiled to machine code' Java variant?

Heh, quite the opposite. Android's Dalvik VM is an interpreter, so it's far less efficient than Java on a PC. You're right, this sort of "bloat" is nothing new to mobiles.

Re:perhaps, but if not flash, Silverlight'll do it (1)

jhol13 (1087781) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676991)

I really hope all the advertisements go to Silverlight.

And I hope for FlashBlock-for-the-Mobiles - but this seems to be harder.

Re:Life in the slow lane (1)

buzzn (811479) | more than 4 years ago | (#29677119)

If someone writes a crappy game/app/javascript that uses a lot of system resources, you'd never blame the OS. Whereas in Flash's case, you blame not the author of the crappy Flash content, but... Flash. Um, no. Flash doesn't eat system resources on PCs or mobile. Badly written content does.

Finally! (1)

Viper23 (172755) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675059)

I can escape from that damn room on every device I own!

What's the point of Flash today (2, Interesting)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675105)

What can you do with Flash that you can't do with html5?

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

Viper23 (172755) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675131)

Consider the existing code base and how awesome it would be to be able to leverage all of that on all of these mobile systems... how long would it take you to recreate the contents of kongragate in HTML 5 vs. how long would it take to recompile what already exists.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675137)

This is exactly the reason Adobe is changing the focus of Flash from the web to stand alone, cross-platform, media rich applications.

Where do you not have a web browser? (1)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675215)

In this day and age, anywhere you could use media rich applications, you have a web browser.

Re:Where do you not have a web browser? (1)

am 2k (217885) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675481)

My Chumby [chumby.com] disagrees. Qt with Webkit doesn't fit on its internal storage, but its USP is a flash player.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (5, Insightful)

camperslo (704715) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675169)

What can you do with Flash that you can't do with html5?

Tie yourself to a vendor

Re:What's the point of Flash today (0)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675919)

Looking at the patches released over the last couple of years (for Linux specifically in my case, but I think it applies to Windows as well), Adobe is pretty much at the top of the list for exploits. It's nice that they release patches, but it scares the crap out of me to have them writing more software of any kind, especially software that's internet facing. They need to have a serious look at refactoring their big projects (especially Flash) for performance and security. If they keep going the way their going, HTML5 is going to eat their lunch.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (2, Insightful)

mad.frog (525085) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675995)

> Adobe is pretty much at the top of the list for exploits

Well duh. Flash is on, what, 95%+ of all desktop web-browsing systems. When Windows + IE ruled the web-browsing world, criminals looked for exploits there. Now that other browsers and OS versions are more popular, Flash is a more attractive lowest-common-denominator.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (2, Informative)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675199)

What can you do with Flash that you can't do with html5?

Play existing Flash content.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

base2_celtic (56328) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676601)

I think you'll find that's a bonus.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676697)

I think you'll find that's a bonus.

Lots and lots of fun little games out there are made with Flash. So... no.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (3, Insightful)

Old97 (1341297) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675277)

Very little; however, as W3C says, HTML5 and W3C will never be able to keep the same pace of advancement with a well funded and determined vendor. The decision processes in the open standards world take a lot longer. So as W3C says, it is likely that there will always be some things on the edges that are supported by proprietary standards but not open ones like theirs. To me that means that products like Flash will die out on the public web and only continue to live in some corporate environments. If you can get 95 or 98% or more of the capabilities you need and reach everyone, would you sacrifice a significant share of your audience for that last 5 or 2%?

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

djradon (105400) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676691)

HELL NO! And furthermore, even if Flash penetration were 100% and they fixed the bug where the player captures my Firefox url and search bar shortcut keystrokes, I wouldn't develop for it. In my 14 years of web development, the only Flash I've ever created was a hidden music player on my otherwise-DHTML animated personal homepage. As soon as HTML5 embedded sound supports multiple simultaneous audio streams, you can bet I'm turfing that bullshit. Long live the open web.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (4, Insightful)

CopaceticOpus (965603) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675281)

What can you do with Flash that you can't do with html5? Have your application run across many mobile devices, if Adobe has their way.

There is no technical reason that we can't have an open source, widely accepted standard for displaying animations and multimedia content over the web. We don't need a proprietary application such as Flash any more than we need one for displaying HTML.

However, Adobe has a lot of momentum and clout. Meanwhile, the browser developers can't even agree on a single standard for embedded video. The "Open" Screen Project is a big push to extend the life of a closed source, locked down technology. If most mobile devices support Flash, and html5 support is spotty, most developers will use Flash. If most developers use Flash, most mobile device makers won't be too concerned about fully implementing html5.

We have an opportunity right now to see html5 and other open standards take hold, but it is also an opportunity for Adobe to extend their grasp. I hope that real openness wins.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (4, Insightful)

IntlHarvester (11985) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675709)

There is no technical reason that we can't have an open source, widely accepted standard for displaying animations and multimedia content over the web.

Good post, but the most important factor isn't even a "technical" issue.

Flash's real strength is on the content-creation side, and the fact that most Flash is generated by "designers" not "developers". All the HTML5 specs in the world won't displace Flash if they require a team of Javascript/SVG gurus to use. There needs to be designer software on the same level as Flash, and that's not a trivial problem.

"desingers" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675911)

Flash's real strength is on the content-creation side, and the fact that most Flash is generated by "designers" not "developers". All the HTML5 specs in the world won't displace Flash if they require a team of Javascript/SVG gurus to use. There needs to be designer software on the same level as Flash, and that's not a trivial problem.

So by "designers", do you mean: people who don't care about not breaking standard GUI controls (buttons, scroll bars), who don't care about breaking the "back" button and bookmarks and the ability to trade URIs, who don't care about their site not being indexed by search engines so people can find it? Those people?

While a useful tool to make certain sites more "interactive", I agree with Jakob Nielsen when he says that its use is 99% bad. As a UI building system, I have never seen a page that needed to be in Flash. Currently the only reason to have it is video streaming, and hopefully that will end with HTML5.

Re:"desingers" (1)

IntlHarvester (11985) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676457)

As if there aren't a huge number of "developers" who are completely ignorant of UI design? I think you're barking up the wrong tree.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (3, Interesting)

lien_meat (1126847) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676113)

Actually, I'm not so sure that making a good IDE for something that supports nearly the same as flash does for html5 and js WOULD be that big a problem. I used to develop in flash a great deal 3 years ago, but I have been doing web programming since then. (mostly php, mysql, but I am really good with javascript as well)

I don't see why, with all the capability we ALREADY have with javascript and html5, couldn't make an IDE for making similar content in a application that is browser/web based and is nearly 100% html5 and javascript (python/php/ruby would be needed some I'm thinking). If one were to develop a good api for frame-based animation using javascript and html5, why then couldn't html5 and javascript form a good ide interface and "compiling"(scripting language needed here) the necessary javascript/html5 to make your content run?

Would a javascript API be as nice as flashes? no, probably not...as actionscript is actually a decent OOP language in many respects (yes javascript can be OOP, but it's just not the same/equivalent). Do I think the results could be as nice? With some good backing and committed development, possibly. Do I see any reason an IDE as rich as flash's couldn't be developed using html5, js, and maybe some other scripting language like python/php/ruby? No, not really. So, really, if I'm right (most likely I'm not), the only thing holding JS and html5 back is lack of will/means to compete head to head with adobe.

Call me out if I'm wrong...but I think it could be done. (and if anyone wants to hire my help, contact me...heh)

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

djradon (105400) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676701)

I agree, authoring tool is a huge factor. A flash-the-application work-alike for multimedia, IMHO, is the open-source holy grail.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

Loomismeister (1589505) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675715)

Why can't mobile browsers do html5?

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

thestudio_bob (894258) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676271)

The "Open" Screen Project is a big push to extend the life of a closed source

And we'll call it "Open" so we can fool some of the people... Glad you saw that too. I pray that html5 takes off and I never have to deal with Flash (or any adobe web products) ever again

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675405)

There might not be much different from a capability standpoint but from a development standpoint Flash has it made. The tools for making html5 app are raw and disjoint. To make a flash app you have a flushed out and solid development environment.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

josteos (455905) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675417)

Properly emulate the speed of a 286 by maxing out the CPU while drawing one animation.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

GMFTatsujin (239569) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675443)

Block it with the FlashBlock addon.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (5, Informative)

seanalltogether (1071602) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675509)

Flex. The Flash platform is split into 3 camps right now, Video, Entertainment, and application development. HTML5 really only threatens the video category, but HTML5 doesn't offer the solutions needed to accomplish the fun promotional websites like you see for video game or movie websites, nor does it offer the framework and debugging support needed for rich application development like Flex. Building high quality and reliable applications in DOM and javascript only can be a torturous proposition.

Er, it sounds like you haven't heard of canvas... (2)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676243)

Really, I've yet to hear a serious answer to what you can do with flash that you can't in modern javascript.

Re:Er, it sounds like you haven't heard of canvas. (1, Insightful)

seanalltogether (1071602) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676305)

Canvas is just svg all over again. Remember when SVG was going to kill animations in flash because it was *technically* possible to achieve the same thing? Canvas is no different. Having a technical solution is not the same thing as a workable solution.

No. (2, Insightful)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676461)

The reason SVG isn't/wasn't a workable solution is that IE doesn't support it. That's not an issue on mobile devices.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675953)

Dynamic audio generation.
Access webcam, microphone.

Re:What's the point of Flash today (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29676205)

Work without problems in all browsers and OSes, including IE which will never have Canvas tag support (according to Microsoft).

Re:What's the point of Flash today (1)

JohnBailey (1092697) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676235)

What can you do with Flash that you can't do with html5?

Piss off iPhone fanboys?

New license (3, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675127)

Certain projects shouldn't fork. Sun wouldn't open up Java for the longest time, because they didn't want forks of Java, and they didn't want to repeat what they went through with Microsoft.

I propose a new license that operates on a few basic principles.

1 - You can redistribute and modify the source code.
2 - You may compile the original source code, and even compile modified versions for personal use.
3 - You may not redistribute modified binaries.

In this scenario, users can compile themselves, test, fix bugs, write patches, etc. They can submit patches upstream, but upstream still largely controls the project and prevents major forks. You would still attract community developers.

I think a license like this would work well for Flash.

The possibility fo forks is necessary (2, Insightful)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675173)

Sometimes a maintainer refuses to give up a project, but refuses to continue meaningful development. Consider the X.org fork.

Re:The possibility fo forks is necessary (2, Informative)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676291)

Consider C-Kermit, wu-imapd, djbdns, and daemontools. While Dan Bernstein has relented, the owners of the other packages have not, and they've basically evaporated from typical distributions, and even Dan Bernstein's djbdns and daemontools have basically fallen by the wayside.

Re:The possibility fo forks is necessary (1)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676779)

and even Dan Bernstein's djbdns and daemontools have basically fallen by the wayside.

At least I guess some good came of it then.

Hopefully, qmail can be added to that list as well.

Re:New license (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675511)

Or just trademark the name and don't allow others to use it.

(Thinking of the whole firefox == iceweasel thing)

Re:New license (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675687)

3 - You may not redistribute modified binaries.

Oh dear. This is a horrendous suggestion.

"The community" - ie programmers with some vague idea of a clue - will not get heavily involved in something that is going to be dragged down by vendor policy. Look at the difficulties Sun has attracting external developers. Now imagine how much worse the situation is if the vendor won't even let you distribute binaries? Clean room implementations would never be believed to be clean room, and would be dogged with the idea that they were derivitative works and thus somehow illicit. And in this particular case - Adobe have thus far shown themselves to be utter incompetents when it comes to portable and efficient code (cpu usage between flash vs anything else playing video?), the last thing they need is to scare off their potential saviours.

AST, a classic control freak, tried this with Minix - "Distribute only patches". It only served to destroy his end goals. Other examples abound (ISO MP3, qmail, msql). The thing is, eventually - *if there are things worth forking for* - an installer that fetches the original sources, applies a set of patches, compiles it and deploys the result becomes standard. All this does is make the original authors look like an insecure bunch of idiots, especially when they start modifying the licence terms to make this kind of thing harder.

The need you identify ( compatibility ) is largely a vendor fantasy need, that plays on the fears of the gullible. Its the last ditch excuse when you have no rational reason left not to go open source. This need is served perfectly well by trademarks : make a compatibility test, if you pass the test, you get to use the mark.

The cross-compilation multiverse (3, Interesting)

synthesizerpatel (1210598) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675197)

I could be wrong, but..

Unity3d.com is probably doing what Adobe plans to already, except they're using .NET. Cross-compiling code into real iPhone applications. I haven't dug too deeply into how Unity3d is doing it, but it seems pretty clear -- you can write your code in .NET with some pseudo-alternative languages like 'Boo' (python), and it makes you a nice iPhone binary that'll pass Apple's deployment criteria.

Considering Adobe has the time, money, and smarts to do it, don't be surprised when their 'Program Actionscript for the Iphone!' system is a very tightly defined API coupled with the iPhone framework that is cross-compiling..

Before I gave up on Perl, the assertion that Parrot would be some fancy answer to everyone's programming problems by allowing you to program in any language you wanted. I somewhat scoffed at the idea, but more recently as I've been working with ARM processors and doing a lot of cross-compiling work I can understand why it's an important idea that will soon be second nature to us.

If I could buy stock in Unity3D right now I would, because those guys nailed it. They just need to scale up and out of just the 3d game market.

Re:The cross-compilation multiverse (2, Interesting)

tres (151637) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676097)

Unity is nice, but the end result is massive bloat. It's a nice way for a developer or company to get into the iPhone market without having to learn Objective C, but I don't think they've 'nailed it.'

I've seen extremely simple applications take 18 - 24 MB space on an iPhone. That's with no textures, no graphics no nothing except basic 3D objects being rendered. An equivalent app developed in Objective C takes 10% - 25% of that.

18 - 24MB doesn't seem like a lot until you think about the fact that all that is all being loaded into the very limited available memory. There's very little room to make something that takes advantage of Unity's framework. And the fact that Unity is trying to do garbage collection in a separate thread means that the performance of the App goes down.

You're right, they're doing some cool stuff -- and the fact that it's cross-platform capable makes it that much better. But personally, I decided to put in the little bit of time it took to learn Objective C and the discipline to retain and release over putting my eggs into Unity's basket (that one was an easy choice).

Re:The cross-compilation multiverse (1)

tres (151637) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676443)

And I forgot to mention that Unity doesn't provide access to native library calls. So, for instance, there's no way to bring up the iPhone keyboard from within a Unity app. This could very well be changing -- and may have already changed, but last I knew Unity apps on iPhone were severely crippled by this.

But that's just a symptom of the real problem with using Unity as the basis for development -- you're relying on a closed platform from third-party with relatively low vested interest in the platform. If a platform doesn't make fiscal sense for Unity to continue publishing and updating, as a Unity developer you have very little recourse. I'm not pretending that it's any different for Apple and NS libs, but Apple has much more invested in the success of the platform, so it's much more unlikely that they will discontinue support of the platform.

This is a great idea! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675261)

Except for the Adobe part.

And that Flash thing.

How about you get it right on the desktop Adobe? (4, Insightful)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675321)

Forgive me if I don't trust a company that can't write a plug-in that will give me less than 80% CPU usage (480p) on my brand new Macbook Pro. The Linux and Windows version are also glacially slow, and resource hogs. Frankly I want less Flash, not more. If Adobe can't get their shit together on the 2nd largest OS platform, how the hell are they going to get it working well on a teeny mobile ARM core?

Re:How about you get it right on the desktop Adobe (2, Interesting)

vivek7006 (585218) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675655)

Adobe is saying that the new 10.1 version will fully offload h264 decoding to the GPU. If that works as advertised, then it would solve lot of problems involving full screen video playback on websites like hulu and youtube.

Re:How about you get it right on the desktop Adobe (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676289)

Clearly they have pulled developers from the Flash-optimization-team-for-non-windows as well as the optimize-size-of-acrobat teams to get this to work.

Hardware acceleration of an API/bytecode? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29675323)

Having hardware video acceleration seems to be one thing, but hardware acceleration of an API or bytecode seems like it could lead to chip bloat, which would make chips much more expensive to make. Shouldn't we concentrate on optimizing the software side of things? Would increasing the processor speed and battery capacity be cheaper than specialized silicon?

Re:Hardware acceleration of an API/bytecode? (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676311)

I think the acceleration they refer to is for a) decoding streaming video/audio data (something that's been done on PCs for a long time, to free up the cpu for other tasks, and usually uses less power than the CPU would to decode it, too), and maybe b) for accellerating vector graphics primitives (drawing lines, circles, polygons, arcs, etc), something which *also* has been done in silicon for a long time (I think back in the days of Windows 3.1 they were already starting to come out with cards which could accelerate some vector operations). I don't think they are going to hardware accelerate the whole language runtime?

Re:Hardware acceleration of an API/bytecode? (1)

shadwstalkr (111149) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676389)

There have been hardware Java machines, why not a hardware Actionscript machine? It's just bytecode.

The proof is in the pudding... (5, Interesting)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675367)

...and Adobe claimed they would have flash on Android this Fall.

October is here. Now they say next year.

I am not hopeful that they can get flash on Android. Possibly they are waiting for better devices so they don't have to shoehorn it into the G1, which could use more RAM, but it is what it is.

In fact, I predict, no Flash for the G1 ever. And many of the other platforms as well. Adoby wants to FUD the developers and keep HTML5 on the shelf as long as possible, since stuff like Canvas will pretty much eat their lunch and dinner if they don't watch out.

Re:The proof is in the pudding... (1)

StreetStealth (980200) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676923)

Flash is indeed running on Android already [engadget.com] . Just not on the G1, unfortunately.

Android? (1)

gearloos (816828) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675501)

So this means I will finally be able to use flash sites on my G1 and HTC Touch? Sweet

Fragmenting their user base (1)

CODiNE (27417) | more than 4 years ago | (#29675987)

This article claims that the new Flash player they're working on for mobile devices will only support ActionScript 3.0, meaning the majority of flash apps which are http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/09/10/06/html5_assault_on_adobe_flash_heats_up_with_clicktoflash.html&page=3

That really sucks for anyone who trusted Adobe and stuck with their Flash Lite development guidelines, all previously made mobile apps have just been made useless.

So really if you want Flash on your mobile you're only going to get stuff that's just been made with you in mind. So there's basically few ActionScript 3.0 apps out there and people are going to be going "I thought I had flash on my phone, why won't it play all those games I like?"

Now for those websites with older Flash games and apps, they either redo them in AS 3.0 or just move to HTML5 and support everyone. Upgrading to AS 3.0 had better be REAL EASY or they've just shot themselves in the foot here.

Not a threat - still waiting on x64 Flash... (2, Insightful)

InvisiBill (706958) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676299)

http://ask.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/10/19/1959200 [slashdot.org]

People have been complaining about the lack of 64-bit Flash for four years now. If Adobe develops this plan with just as much passion as they had for x64, it'll be 10 years before we have to worry about it.

Photoshop for Linux (2, Insightful)

Thagg (9904) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676459)

That's all I want from Adobe. Please please please please please!

Adobe is a horrible company to do business with (2, Informative)

peipas (809350) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676593)

Let's say you're work for a small business or non-profit and you have, say, four licensed copies of Adobe's Creative Suite products. When you bought them, the current version was CS62. Several months later, you've decided there's value in providing these tools to another employee. That's right, you want to give Adobe another $500-2500, depending on the product(s) included. Sorry, Adobe is now at CS63, and they won't sell you CS62 anymore. What's more, the two versions are "sort of" compatible. You can import one version into the other, but all elements may not translate properly. Nope, if you want to add another user of their software, you have to purchase another full license and four upgrades in order to keep them all at the same version!

Did you get a lot of life out of your Photoshop installation but finally decide to upgrade? Great! Check online for eligible upgrade versions. Hooray, it's listed! But wait, when you attempt to install it, it won't accept the license key from your old version of Photoshop. It turns out Adobe's installation path for your version is to call customer service. [insert dead horse about how ridiculous it is to punish your paying customers vs. pirates by forcing them to activate] So you get Adobe on the phone. "We're sorry, in order to upgrade your version, you're going to have to uninstall the product, then reinstall it again with a special command line switch."

Personally, I will avoid Adobe products wherever there is a viable alternative. Adobe chooses to follow the Microsoft example of exploiting dominance in a sector by putting their customers through bullshit those with a choice would never put up with.

Has anyone mentioned that developing Flex Sucks? (2, Informative)

mE123 (140419) | more than 4 years ago | (#29676621)

Has anyone else tried to use Flash/Flex to do anything more then just a game/animation? The frameworks are at best immature. While the Flex language is "ok" (basically just ECMAScript), the libraries, tools, frameworks, and most everything else that goes with it are just abysmally bad when compared to any other modern language (Java, Obj-C, Python, C#, etc).

The Flex Builder plugin for eclipse only supports Eclipse 3.3, which means modern plugins won't work. The flex compiler itself is slow and hard to setup. Oh, and the tools only officially support Windows and OSX. The documents are horrible and only give you most simplest of use case examples, but this might be because most of the frameworks breakdown when doing even remotely off the "rail" they have defined.

Just as a quick example of something inexcusably broken, the ComboBox that comes with Flex doesn't have a set selected by value function. You can only set by index and by label... which is just crazy when you consider most ComboBoxes contain localized strings order alphabetically in that local.

As a development environments go, I think you would be hard pressed to find something worse for development than flex.

And I could go on about how bad the user interaction is by default. But you really have to see that one to believe it.

Flash is dead (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29676661)

If not by HTML5, or DHTML (4) + JS, etc... then by the forces that went after Microsoft. I mean, if you can declare Microsoft a monopoly - even though no one ever held a gun to my head and forced me to use Windows or Office - then Adobe is dead with Flash and the way they throw that crap around. "doesnt work on the iPhone because of technical issues...." BULLSHIT. Its ALL about licensing and the Adobe CEO likes telling stories.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...