Apple vs Adobe: When Your Favourite Aunt & Uncle Get Divorced

So this morning Adobe has launched a campaign to try to and reach out to the pro Apple crowd and the web community in general. They even tried to play the open market versus open standard card by making a plea to our creative sides.

We believe that consumers should be able to freely access their favourite content and applications, regardless of what computer they have, what browser they like, or what device suits their needs. No company — no matter how big or how creative — should dictate what you can create, how you create it, or what you can experience on the web.

While I agree in part with their statement, I have to disagree that Flash is the way to universally deliver content to all internet capable devices. The sad truth that Chuck Geschke and John Warnock have to face up to is that Flash is actually a pretty crappy product that has always been a night to develop around and a bigger pain in the ass to have to sit down and wait for a web site to load like as if it was a game loading from a floppy drive on Mononque’s old Commodore 64. The web is all about getting information “Right Now” not after loading some crappy ad or watching a progress load for 2 minutes before presenting an “ENTER PAGE”. Even Flash crazy and super creative types like musicians have learned that loaders like this are unacceptable and rather than suffer the wrath of our WEB A.D.D. minds hitting the back key and reading some fans page. For example the Gorillaz have stopped using this as a homepage and have now made their own web site look more like a blog or a fan page. When you do click through to the “Plastic Beach” page for their latest album, you do see a loader page and eventually a Flash site does pop up, but in all fairness, the Gorillaz flash sites are always worth it even though they very easily could and probably should be written in HTML5.


This isn’t just about the iPad and Smartphones either, Flash sites suck for those using older computers and newer Netbooks too. There is never a valid reason for a web site to have a list a requirements to use it. As a web developer, I have always stated that if you need an instruction manual to use one of my sites, then I have failed. Do you need a manual to watch your TV, NO. Use a regular POTS telepone, of course not. Do you need a manual to search the Web with Google, of course not. Granted, the quality of these services are greatly enhanced when you dig a little deeper and do break out the manual, but you can get by quite nicely without it. Ever try loading Flash plugins into a Linux distro? Ever try to code your own Flash video into your homepage without using Youtube or Vimeo? The very sad truth is that Flash is now a deprecated technology that just doesn’t belong in today’s Internet. Chuck, John and the rest of the gang at Adobe now have to realize that today’s mobile internet needs to be truly universal and rely on actual open standards that, funny enough, are device agnostic. Ever try to look up a band’s site before a gig? Or try to read the menu of a nearby restaurant on your phone? Of course not, they’re all in Flash cause someone’s artsy graphics cousin who is not even a web designer put a site together for them. The equivalents of getting the aerodynamics guy who develops the shape of the new Porsche to fix your VW’s transmission.

So listen up Uncle Adobe, while Aunty Apple has been very busy getting the house in order and raising the kids to be mature technological wonders, you’ve been out partying like you were still fresh out of High School trying to nail every young thing that pops up and sadly giving them the “Flash”. Truth is you’re getting old and little fat and the new “young things” don’t want your clap “Flash”. It’s time to trim the fat, lose the Flash once and for all and go back to Dreamweaver. You remember Dreamweaver don’t you? It’s that awesome HTML editor you bought from Macromedia along with Flash. And you know what it’s actually pretty good at this HTML5 stuff too, been using it myself lately. You could probably just release another letter and tell everyone it’s been HMTL5 ready all along and you don’t know that all this fuss has been about.

Just Saying…

(BTW, I wrote this with Mars Edit and it’s pretty damn cool. More on this later, I promise.)