Who needs Flash? Javascript is King!

Written by: jstiles

December 7, 2011

Who needs Flash? Javascript is King! featured image

Once upon a time in a galaxy far far away, Flash™ used to rule the roost. If you wanted to achieve anything ‘sexy’ in terms of animation or user interaction then you were more or less forced down the Flash™ route. I’m happy to say that things moved on a while ago with improvements in how browser’s handle Javascript and the emergence of libraries such as jQuery. Flash has quietly slipped away.

It occurred to us that this has been ever so slightly taken for granted here, as we have been using Javascript in this way for years now, and that we ought to recognise the Javascript revolution that’s gaining momentum every day.

‘Anything is possible’ website user interfaces

On a recent project our client was not only impressed with how we produced a complex user interface without using Flash™, it opened their eyes with regard to what is possible using Javascript. This made us think. ‘Why do we take this stuff for granted?’.

Being in an agency where new technology is embraced daily and gets incorporated into client projects at every opportunity, is a lot like watching your kids grow up. You don’t notice them grow, learn and mature as much as everybody else because you see them every day. But the truth of the matter is that during the last few years HTML, CSS, Javascript and user interface design (in general) has hit puberty, grown a bunch of muscles, and, with the full adoption of HTML5 and CSS3 by most browsers in the next year, will have come of age. The shackles are literally going to be off.

But it’s not farewell to you yet Flash™. You’ve still got your uses… well maybe. We could just about think of one good reason to use Flash™ nowadays. There is still one niche that Flash™ currently occupies well. The space between online and offline – Adobe Air. This uses a mixture of languages including HTML, CSS, Javascript and Flash™ to deliver rich applications which are not reliant on your web browser. One such application that uses this service is the BBC iPlayer download service.

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Who needs Flash? Javascript is King! featured image

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