Life After Flash: Multimedia for the Open Web


So Mozilla posted this

Life After Flash: Multimedia for the Open Web

here the intro

Flash delivered video, animation, interactive sites and, yes, ads to billions of users for more than a decade, but now it’s going away. Adobe will drop support for Flash by 2020. Firefox no longer supports Flash out of the box, and neither does Chrome. So what’s next? There are tons of open standards that can do what Flash does, and more.

let’s comment all that

That’s a classic approach against Flash: OMG it’s not open source

Truly Open Multimedia

Flash promised to deliver one unifying platform for building and delivering interactive multimedia websites. And, for the most part, it delivered. But the technology was never truly open and accessible, and Flash Player was too resource-hungry for mobile devices. Now open-source alternatives can do everything Flash does—and more. These are the technologies you should learn if you’re serious about building tomorrow’s interactive web, whether you’re doing web animation, games, or video.

this part “Flash Player was too resource-hungry for mobile devices” is bullshit,
I know that because I can run circle around HTML5 on mobile devices with Adobe AIR

What really make me LOL when I read “But the technology was never truly open and accessible”
is how those browser vendors think they are so “open” when in fact they are all about controlling the web platform

Let’s take E4X, it was open, it was even an ECMA standard, and it was implemented in the Firefox browser, and then they decided to remove it.

I get it (no I don’t, I’m being ironic here), nobody want to easily manipulate XML structures in a browser environment where the whole HTML markup is based on something close to XML … yeah nobody want to do that right ?

And what about DRM ?
that’s closed source and yet Mozilla had no problem whatsoever to adopt it in Firefox,
but I guess if for the own good of the users right ?

Let’s kill Flash in the browser but let’s support DRM instead!!
How can people take seriously Mozilla or Google after that ?

see here
Watch DRM content on Firefox

Firefox downloads and enables the Google Widevine CDM by default to give users a smooth experience on sites that require DRM. The CDM runs in a separate container called a sandbox and you will be notified when a CDM is in use.

anyway let’s continue

the whole part about Web Animation where they keep repeating “it’s simple” is bullshit power 100
the basic test is that, take one of your simplest flash animation and try to convert it with to HTML5,
please do calculate how long it takes…

what??? it took you few hours to convert something you build in few minutes with Flash ?
it’s hell because you have to fiddle a bit in CSS, a bit in HTML, a bit in JS ?
you end up using a library because you can not be bothered with the shitty API ?

yeah that’s HTML5 for ya

That’s the main problem with HTML5 animation in general, they create APIs that are piled on top of each other: Canvas API, SVG API, CSS API, Web Animation API, etc.

See here for an interesting article
Myth Busting: CSS Animations vs. JavaScript

The following is a guest post by Jack Doyle, author of the GreenSock Animation Platform (GSAP). Jack does a lot of work with animations in the browser and has discovered that the generic opinion that “CSS is faster” just isn’t true. It’s more than that, as well. I’ll let him explain.

also nice to read are
The HTML5 drag and drop disaster
compare that to the drag’n drop API in Flash/AIR for example

So when it comes to games

Web Games

At one time, Flash ruled web games. It was easy to learn, use, and distribute. It was also robust, able to deliver massively multiplayer online games to millions. But today it’s possible to deliver the same—if not better—experience using JavaScript, HTML5, WebGL and WebAssembly.

Yeah sure you can build a game with anything, but I still say you don’t build better game just because you use web tech like HTML5 etc.

And in fact, I agree with the following

HTML5/JavaScript game engines are better than ever, but they still can’t quite match the performance of native apps.

And I would say that Flash/AIR is closer to native than HTML5 ever will be.

anyway it continues with video


Most video services have already switched to HTML5-based streaming using web technologies and open codecs; others are sticking with the Flash-based FLV or FV4 codecs. As stated earlier, Flash video formats rely on software rendering that can tax web browsers and mobile platforms. Modern video codecs can use hardware rendering for video playback, greatly increasing responsiveness and efficiency.

Except Flash can use hardware accelerated videos since Flash Player 10.2 and AIR 2.5
see StageVideo, and see About hardware acceleration using StageVideo

that dates back from 2011 …

hey Mozilla have no shame let’s use infos that are 6 years old but are so convenient to spread bullshit about Flash technology … please tell me again what was the state of HTML5 video in 2011 ? inexistant I believe …

And now StageVideo is even better, you can use it by default, and it will use hardware acceleration by default, but if it happen it is not supported it will automatically switch back to software rendering which is pretty neat.

Anyway I will let you all comes with your own conclusion on this Mozilla article.


Happy to see this breakdown of this.
It’s an exhausting discussion where nobody really knows the difference between Flash vs. HTLM5 because the majority of people never really built anything significant in Flash (or if they did that was in highschool with AS2 or something). They don’t have a clue as to what the major differences really are.

I strongly dislike the mention of games in that article because I know how hard, unreliable, and unmaintainable this is. It’s really upsetting because I do try, continue to try, and use all this too to build things. It consistently fails at some point (decision to move off the web if you are making something serious is what happens).
For example, just one part of my game has about 500+ audio files (just one part). Many of these are full-length dialogue. If it’s a browser plugin serving up this content, then there is little problem with such a complex sound system. It’s controlled, manageable, and the filesize is good because of compression.
If it’s HTML5, it will take forever to load all those assets (lots of reasons that aren’t worth getting into), it is a pain managing all those assets, and the bigger your game is the more likely it will be to break down (especially with discrepancies between browsers).
When people preach HTML5 games they don’t really have proper comparisments in terms of complexity. For me the end all argument is that plugin games where a lot more complex, and elaborate (closer to downloadable desktop experiences), than HTML5 ones. Sure this statement will get nitpicked to death, but It’s exhausting over explaining this.
Also, if you want a game with seriously sophisticated animations, and lots of animated elements all happening at the same time, HTML5 ones eventually break down. Performance is terrible.
All that aside, you then have to deal with cross browser issues. In the end, even a good javascript game ends up having to “leave the browser” and be downloadable. Too many notifications like “this game will only work in Chrome…”. This should not be the case. The web should not be like this, especially if it wasn’t so bad before.

I mean, anyone here knows all this so it’s basically preaching to the choir.
If the web were really open and free for all to use it would NOT be an argument of killing Flash, or Flash vs. HTML5/JS. It would be up to the developer to determine what the best solution, tool, or platform, is for their needs.
I do believe that the entire misinformation cloud of “slow, insecure, unsafe…” hanging over Flash is one created to push alternatives out so the web can be controlled.
This is exactly what we have now.
There’s nothing free about this when the technology is dictated by browsers. Compatibility, and cross-browser support, is just going to get worst (in my opinion).

Lol, ok. Thanks for writing this up. It’s good to hear someone else say all that. Been spending too much time here today. I think it’s become my favorite site :smiley:


Their knowledge of video is not good.

  1. Yes they are wrong about HW acceleration in Flash.
  2. FLV is not a codec. It is a container. H.264 is a codec.
  3. VP9 allows hardware acceleration but guess what, very few video cards have these codec chips. Therefore VP9 is currently a poor codec to use for desktop as “normal” users will be using CPU based decoding. iOS devices don’t support it at all.
  4. There’s this odd utopian vision of an open web which does not fit with reality.

I couldn’t believe this piece was put on the official Firefox site. It’s filled with “alternative facts”.