Pre-Adobe, I made my living building rich, Flash-intensive sites for Gucci, Coca-Cola, Nike, and other big brands. Doing that job today, I’d be in a jam: How could I create rich experiences that run on desktops (where Flash is the obvious, consistent (cross-browser/-platform) choice) and on iOS devices where Flash isn’t allowed? I’d have to create two versions of a everything¨Cone Flash, and one HTML5*. Good luck getting clients to double their budgets, though, and yet they don’t want richness cut in half.
So, the opportunity: Cut the cost of targeting multiple runtimes & we’ll deliver real wins: more richness for clients, and a competitive advantage for customers.
Wallaby is the code name for an experimental Flash-to-HTML 5 converter that Adobe has just released to the development community via Adobe Labs, the site featuring Adobe’s beta technology. Check out what engineer Rik Cabanier showed (just a tech demo, no promises, etc.) during MAX sneak peeks Tuesday night:
The Flash to HTML5 Online easily converts SWF to HTML5 animation, which enables you to play Flash movie in HTML5 compatible browsers that without Flash Player installed. Therefore, you can put the converted HTML5 animation on your website, and let visitors enjoy it normally on PC, iPad, iPhone and other devices that support HTML5.
Are you surprised? Don’t be. As I’ve written many times, Adobe lives or dies by its ability to help customers solve real problems. That means putting pragmatism ahead of ideology.
HTML 5 video playback on the Mac and iOS devices by “Quicktime.” You can put two and two together to figure out why Apple is so pro HTML 5. I’ll give you a hint, it has NOTHING to do with open standards and only Apple¡¯s pockets.
Flash is great for a lot of things, and this week’s demos showed it’s only improving. It’s not the only game in town, however, and Adobe makes its money selling tools, not giving away players. Let’s help people target whatever media** they need, as efficiently as possible.
* Someone will probably start quibbling with the use of “HTML5″ as a stand-in for SVG, CSS3, Canvas, etc. I know, I know. I use the umbrella term in the loose, commonly understood sense: “Flash stuff without Flash.”
** Historical fun fact: Flash Professional used to export Java, as that was the relevant runtime of the day. Tools evolve to meet viewer demands.
Final footnote/disclaimer: I don’t work in the Flash group, so all this just represents my take on what’s possible. Your feedback is of course most welcome.
This ” like the fancy HTML 5 export functionality ” is really great. I hope it gets fine tuned to an easy-to-use reliable Save As or Export option that we all can take advantage of soon. I work in Flash often and I’m a little skeptical that a lot of the advanced ActionScript stuff could be made to easily export but most of the bread-and-butter everyday web animation work could be readily converted. I’d much prefer to work in Flash’s authoring environment than futzing around with a text editor.
Now wouldn’t it be nice to build CSS styles in InDesign? Thanks for keeping me in touch. I just upgraded to CS5 and love what you all have done with the software. The installer was a little wonky but now that I’m up and working, I have no complaints!