Flash & HTML5: Stop the War

Maybe I’m Late to the Game…

But let me spill my two cents anyways:

HTML5 is a set of rules/standards for writing HTML. Basically, imagine it this way… there was once Old English but now many of those words are not used and now we have a lot of new words that perform functions of some of the old words. HTML5 is a new set of words that replace old ones to be more efficient. HTML5 also gets rid of some old words that are no longer needed.

Another function of HTML5 is to say, “we no longer want to read slang, instead we want you to write properly so that more people can understand you”. Makes sense right? Slang is hard to understand for people learning a new language.

Last and probably most important is to know that HTML5’s last function is to create shortcuts for complex tasks. The most commonly known shortcut is the HTML5 <video> tag. In short, this tells your browser, “replace me with some cool JavaScript functions that play a video”.

That is HTML5

It’s Like Comparing a Pogo Stick to a Dictionary

“Um… that’s not very Flash-tastic.” You are correct! HTML5 is not a replacement for Flash. Let me reiterate so that it becomes obvious… Flash makes images move… it displays videos and sounds… it lets users interact with videos. HTML5 is standards… it is a set of rules to write a language. Not even remotely related.

So if HTML5 is not a replacement for Flash… what’s all this talk about then? Notice the final part of HTML5… it “creates shortcuts for complex tasks” by using “some cool JavaScript functions”. JAVASCRIPT, that’s what it is all about. That’s the key.

HTML5 has shortcuts for JavaScript which has made JavaScript a competitor for the gaps in the Web that Flash filled. Flash is a tool to create animated images (um… movies) that can be interacted with. However, because there was no way to show a video on a browser, Flash raised its hand and said, “give me the video, I’m pretty good with moving images”.

Flash will not go away anytime soon. Sure, you can create an interact-able animated set of images with JavaScript but it’s going to take a hell-a-lot of math. So until there is a visual program to write all that math (um… like an Adobe Flash Catalyst for JavaScript), Flash will not have a direct competitor.

The Sad Part…

…is that Adobe is getting the short end of the stick.

Apple and others have been so adamant that Flash should die that they already wrote the obituary. “HTML5 kills Flash”. What’s worse is that they blame it on a great company being “Closed Source”. And I’ll add in here that yes, JavaScript is open source… bury that away somewhere in case it is actually useful information.

Let me ask this: Have you ever tried to theme iTunes? Why did it take so long for Apple to let you put a background image on your iPod touch? Did you know that you have to pay $100 a year to be able to create an iPhone app… THAT IS NOT BUILT ON JAVASCRIPT BUT ON A CLOSED SOURCE LANGUAGE CREATE BY APPLE? (Google Cocoa).

I’m not a Hater

Let me add some fine print…

I don’t hate Apple… I have an iPad2 and a Mac Book Pro and an iPod Touch and I want me an iPhone 4s. Apple is very progressive and has revolutionized the computer industry. Apple has created quality standards that now every other software or computer company must live by. They do what they do and they do it very well.

They can also sell anyone on anything… which is good to be able to do. They sometimes just don’t do that very ethically. Trash talking a company that has since the beginning, developed specifically for Apple products (and in fact is probably one of the biggest factors in Apple’s popularity) is not a nice way to say thank you.

So… here is what I want to say: Adobe is a great company, Flash is very good at what it does… there’s no need to bash either.

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