Flash Player 9 on OpenMoko?

hank williams hank777 at gmail.com
Thu Mar 22 18:28:10 CET 2007

On 3/22/07, Philippe De Swert <philippedeswert at scarlet.be> wrote:
> Hi,
> First of all I do not intend to flame you. So no hard feelings towards
> you.
> However there are some important points regarding flash that lots of
> people
> tend to ignore.
> So you admit being one of those "evil" people that make websites
> inaccessable.

Ah yes, you don't mean to flame, but flash and I are evil. Well in any case
you have just invalidated everything else that you say which follows.

Not only for people who think flash is evil because it is closed, but also
> for
> those who think the flash licence is unacceptable (like me. No I do NOT
> want
> to grant Adobe access to my computer because I install their flash
> plugin.) or
> for the blind.
> > Flash is a critical element of the internet ecosystem and it is closed
> > source. Gnash is *not* a solution. I can tell you this as someone who
> spends
> > hours a day in the flash environment. Flash is moving far too fast to
> use
> > only a platform that is **years** behind for the benefit of being purely
> > open source.
> Well gnash is improving, it is really slow though and eats lots of
> resources.
> But apart from the missing features due to lack of documentation, flash
> itself
> is unsuitable for embedded systems due to being a huge resource hog. The
> proprietary flash plugins on the Nokia 770 and n800 are so slow just
> because
> they don't have so much processing power to spend on it. Flash btw kills
> battery life on those devices, just as it does on my laptop and will on an
> OpenMoko phone.
> A quick glance at the system requirements (for Linux as they seem to be a
> bit
> lower for Windows). 800Mhz cpu (which means x86 based with floating
> point),
> 512Mb of ram and 128Mb of graphics memory. Lets look at the Neo. 200Mhz
> WITHOUT floating point, 128Mb ram and no real graphics memory...

Adobe produces a mobile version that is not yet flash 9 compatible. The
resource requirements are different. As I said before flash 9 is not ready
for mobile (ARM) devices.

> The flash development community, of which I am a part, is
> > aggressively taking advantage of new features and the adoption of the
> latest
> > version (flash 9) is faster than any previous version.
> Unless you work for Adobe you are part of the flash user community...

How stupid. I am a developer. Meaning I write code in actionscript and flex.
I am a part of the  developer community because I have actively contributed
to flash *developer* communities for the last 4 years. I do not consider
myself a flash "user" any more than I consider myself a "C++" user. I am a
flash developer and a C++ developer, and I am part of the community of flash
developers who talk every day about the tools (both open and closed source)
and help each other solving technical and development issues. Perhaps this
concept is foreign to you.

> As I see it, not having a real version of flash makes openmoko much less
> > disruptively competitive than it might otherwise be.
> Which is partly true. However downloading flash over GPRS is not very
> interesting. And it would only be disruptive because unfortunately so many
> people are expecting people to install flash. What would be really
> disruptive
> is an standardized and open framework that allows the same things as flash
> which everybody could with relative ease make use of. Something that might
> be
> supported by default in a browser. Adobe has a stranglehold monopoly on
> this
> flash thing at the moment. Which makes them no better than Microsoft
> messing
> up the HTML standard with IE and Frontpage.
> > Developing apps with
> > flash really allows for the creation of much more sophisticated software
> > much more quickly.
> It is true that flash has some nice features, however using something that
> is
> open and standardized has a lot more possibilities. Lots of things that
> can be
> done with flash could also be done with SVG etc...

Many more things *cant* be done with SVG that can be done with flash.
actionscript, video, audio, and incredible tools are all things that SVG
cant compete with from a capability or productivity perspective.

> Of course flash 9 is currently not compiled for ARM, but
> > that will come. I just think that it would be incredibly valuable to the
> > platform to get flash 9 as soon as possible and not to worry about the
> open
> > religion in this arena.
> As I pointed out there are also valid technical reasons like performance
> and
> battery life. Also licensing, access to the source code for optimisations
> and
> patents are an issue.

Its clear you know nothing about flash, which in its current mobile version
is implemented on 200 million devices currently world wide. But the religion
about open licenses is in my view counterproductive since there is no open
platform that comes anywhere near flash. Gnash is the closest and it is in
the stone age. So optimizing something so old and out of date is hardly a
good trade off. And I have no idea what patents have to do with this. You
just seemed to throw it in to be open source religion compliant.

> If the internet can survive with some closed source
> > apps, openmoko can too.
> I would rather say the internet survives despite closed source and
> non-standard apps and tools.

You must be too young to remember that the computing and communications
worlds have been around a lot longer than open source and thrived without
it. I am obviously not against open source, but this religious stuff is like
the Taliban.

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