A couple of days ago, I posted an open letter to Adobe which outlined developer concerns about the lack of PR and future roadmaps of the Adobe Flash and Air technologies in favour of their HTML5 based tools. This was sparked by comments in a blog regarding a new set of UI tools for their PhoneGap product.
I had a huge amount of support via email, on this blog and on the original post that I made on Facebook. I’m happy to say that Adobe responded very quickly and the official Adobe response can be found here:
The response takes a positive stance that implies the continued development of both the Flash and Air platforms into the future. I followed this up with the following comment on the Adobe site:
Thank you for the response Chris. I had a lot of messages and support from the Flash and Air community regarding my open letter to you http://www.plugin.io/open-letter-to-adobe. The main topics addressed by developers on my blog, by email and via facebook were:
- The lack of Adobe PR at events and mediocre action to the promotion of Flash and Air platform technologies that should be considered when companies make decisions on web products. Managers are looking for stable platforms and Adobe are not vocal in contesting the general false rhetoric that Flash is a dead technology.
- The slowdown of feature releases. I understand that Flash and Air are mature technologies, however, developers feel that more can be done to ensure that Flash and Air keep up with mobile and GPU technologies, hopefully these will be fully addressed by AGAL2. Perhaps more technical information about this could clarify what developers can expect.
- That ASNext being cancelled was considered to be a lack of commitment to the platform. Perhaps outlining in more depth the reasoning behind that would serve to help developers understand that decision.
- Over the last few years, some large gaming companies have moved towards Linux, is there a possibility of Adobe acknowledging that this will increase the Linux user base and reverse their decision on not supporting the Linux platform?
- General outreach to the developer community, community projects and general dialogue. You have been good enough to provide your email address here, but as well as a games promotion, projects too. I know that my own project, Zest3D would benefit from that.
The announcement that Adobe is committed to the future of the Flash and Air platforms will be great news to many developers. I thank you for your continued work on the products and hope that Adobe address what seems to be a massive lack of PR around its Flash based technologies. We are eagerly awaiting your response on these topics.
I really do hope that Chris and Adobe bring real action to the PR table and help developers to promote the Adobe Flash and Air technologies as capable and viable products that already drive millions of games and applications with seamless cross platform capability on desktop, mobile, SmartTV and web. Their gaming support has pushed the platforms forward to near native speeds and it would be great for community projects, such as my own 3D engine, and many others to get more developer coverage and Adobe support.
The future progress of the web should not be limited to the idea that the pace of Adobe Flash and Air development aught to slow down in order to make the progress of HTML5 seem faster than it really is. Instead, people at Adobe could take the time to recognise that HTML5 standards are not what people had been hoping for and that many large companies have reversed their own decisions on HTML5 policy. Perhaps Adobe can take that and use it to cross promote their other great tools whilst maintaining one of the best ecosystems of developers and to take care of them them rather than alienating them into moving to competitors, who would do almost anything for such skilled and dedicated developers.
We should also be realistic about our expectations of Adobe. I think that the Flash and Air community can take this away. We are united in our opinions that Air is a superior platform, not only for gaming and video, but across the entire cross-platform scope. Adobe have been doing a very poor job to promote it that way in order to promote their HTML5 technologies and regardless of what Adobe do in response, we can all help to make people understand that Flash is not a dead technology, that it is a mature, cost effective solution that is superior to current alternatives and that millions of applications, mobile apps, RIAs and frameworks are using Flash and Air very effectively. Flash is still active and continually being developed and excels where HTML5 will always fail as HTML5 is a specification that can not change.