the writing has been on the wall

flashintrashIt was at a talk I was giving in 2009 nearly a year before Steve Jobs gave his thoughts on Flash that I told an attentive group “don’t use Flash, real designers don’t, it’s a crutch, it’s a system resource hog, it’s not adequate or even necessary, especially for the mobile market you’re just saying you don’t care about them.”

Indeed, it had been a resource hog really since the beginning, I still shudder at nights eons ago sleeplessly trying to get a Flash file down to something manageable in size, swearing at it. This is long before smartphones but not before broadband was so ubiquitous, a time that you needed to massage file sizes as small as possible due to people still on dialup as your audience. Yes, dialup. This is long before too fantastic tools such as jQuery and variants of Javascript, using containers to stream H.264 and other advances made Flash completely irrelevant if not inconsiderate to use. Truth be told, it had been a bane and pain to most creatives much longer than that, better part of a decade. Sure it had it’s place and time, but just like floppy discs and CRT monitors, that time is in the past and belongs in antiquity.

Adobe more-or-less finally officially announced it’s pulling the plug on mobile Flash, Android’s latest and greatest (and fractured) operating system JellyBean won’t run it, they don’t want it to, Google wont, and rightfully, even be supporting or recommending it. Google, it seems, even knows when to move on and Adobe, to their credit, see the writing on the wall. Of course iOS for iPhone, etc., never ran Flash, that’s because Steve Jobs was always the leader in technology and had a deep sense of what is great, and what isn’t, and Flash has always been in the latter. Plus the reality is, even by the time of the iPhone release in 2007, Flash was on it’s way to irrelevance, you truly didn’t need it a half-decade ago in 2007, why in the heck would any person in their right mind, especially any developer worth their salt, think something so antiquated would be worth a damn now?

Flash for mobile – to be blunt – sucked, it always did, always would have. You’re talking about bloated legacyware, technology that barely was able to be anything close to efficient on old large desktop machine, on a laptop it’s a power hog to it’s larger-than-pocket sized battery. As it stands, if you use a Mac or PC or can even get it to work on a Linux machine, it’s a resource hog, it’ll eat up your CPU cycles, overheat your machine, Flash for ANY platform is a heavy outdated piece of crap, it’s needs to go, period, not only for mobile, for all platforms. It’s full demise is coming and, anyone who embracing future web compliance will only be elated, for now, it’s the little things. Good-bye Flash, not-so-nice knowing you. Enjoy your spot in the annals of time, some history museum from the late 90s when computers were beige and streaming a movie cross-platform was more convoluted.

Good riddance Flash, and amen.