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Slow Death of Flash

Small steps. So very very slowly.

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It made the BBC.


The egregious web browser Firefox will now block Flash by default. (Firefox offshoot Tor doesn't run Flash for very good reasons.) And it took only five years. Such is the power of open source.


Steve Jobs wrote the above piece over five years ago. It was published in April 2010. Steve Jobs and Apple did some incredible stuff together, and the above manifesto is one of them.

Flash is supposed to render audio, video, and junk. It was supplanted by HTML5 years ago. But as with other products from the moribund Adobe, it just kept on. And on. And on.

Apple computers don't come with Flash at all. If you want to be that dumb, you have to download it yourself. Far be it from Apple to endorse something that stupid.

Rixstep used Adobe products long ago. They were aware that Adobe had 'stolen' leading engineers from other companies (eg Quark) only to - precisely - do nothing. The ramp from MacOS to OS X was an easy climb, if it could even be considered a climb.

Apple made it easier for the intellectually disenfranchised with something called 'Carbon'. But Adobe weren't even prepared to go that far - they embedded ancient PEF executables in supposed Carbon bundles. It doesn't get lamer than that.

Adobe's engineers have been top drawer. Their meticulousness has been noticed. But Adobe management - those controlling where the product line's to go - opted out of doing something radical, something sensible.

That Adobe should keep on flogging the dead horse that's Flash - it's unconscionable. That open source should finally accede to the warnings of Steve Jobs, now over five years in the rear view mirror - is of course welcome. But it's dreadfully late.

Flash melts mobos. It makes computer fans go wild. It forces computer OEMs to include fans. It crashes left and right. It is slower than molasses at zero degrees Kelvin. And it's a harbinger for all sorts of evilware and stupidware - it has its own cookie system that system cleaners have a tough time dealing with. And it has additional tools to strictly control who gets to view what - it's about as hostile to the spirit of the Internet as one can get.

'New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too). Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future', wrote Steve Jobs back in April 2010. Yes, perhaps they should do that. But five years later and they still haven't. And the greatest watershed we have is that Firefox will not have Flash on by default - oh it'll still be there, alright. It just won't be on by default. Small steps. So very very slowly.

See Also
BBC: Mozilla blocks Flash by default on Firefox browser
Steve Jobs: Thoughts on Flash
Learning Curve: Flash Money
Industry Watch: 'Click to Run': The Days of Flash
Learning Curve: U Need Flash
Industry Watch: Android Gets Smartphone Flash
Industry Watch: H.264 Rules
The Very Ugly: Silverlight 5.0.61118.0
Red Hat Diaries: Steve Jobs is Right

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