My boss said he'd seen something in the paper about Adobe abandoning FLASH and is worried because we've been doing alot of our training development in Captivate. Also he's concerned that future customers might have read something about it and not choose us because they believe FLASH is going away.
Anyone know anything I can tell my boss to calm him down?
As long as you're not targeting mobile devices, you should be fine for the foreseeable future. Even then, Adobe is rumored to be working on an export to HTML 5 from Captivate, so by the time it starts to be a problem that there's no Flash in the browser on mobile, it should be covered.
As I understand it, Adobe has (or plans to) lay off about 700 workers. I've been seeing rumors fly yesterday about Flash. What seems to be the case here is that Adobe is backing away from a Flash Player for mobile devices in favor of HTML 5 and Apps. (Thanks Steve Jobs!)
I don't believe Flash is going away. Adobe has too much invested in the overarching Flash technology to just abandon it. So it would make sense that it would remain for things PC and Mac based, but not for smartphones and small devices.
These are just my own observations based off some notes I've seen in a behind-the-scenes forum for the Adobe Community Professionals group.
I'll try pinging the group and see if there is an "official" response you could point your boss to that may calm him.
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This was quite the topic for us yesterday as well. As RIck points out, it's not going away. There will be a place for the enterprise desktop/laptop for a long long time.
Here's an article from Wired which might help explain more - http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2011/11/adobe-kills-mobile-flash/
And an official blog post: http://blogs.adobe.com/conversations/2011/11/flash-focus.html
"Our future work with Flash on mobile devices will be focused on enabling Flash developers to package native apps with Adobe AIR for all the major app stores. We will no longer continue to develop Flash Player in the browser to work with new mobile device configurations (chipset, browser, OS version, etc.) following the upcoming release of Flash Player 11.1 for Android and BlackBerry PlayBook. We will of course continue to provide critical bug fixes and security updates for existing device configurations. We will also allow our source code licensees to continue working on and release their own implementations.
A lot has already be answered. I did find this blog post by Steve Howard also very interesting:
Just and FYI. Adobe Labs already has a Captivate 5.5 SWF to HTML5 converter available for you to download and try out. It's the second version already. It still has a lot of shortcomings, but it's making progress. See http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/captivate_html5/.
Even *if* Flash were to be killed dead tomorrow, your courseware will still work.
Authorware was put out to pasture 7 years ago, but our Authorware content still works perfectly well in IE 9 on Windows 7 64-bit.
Flash, like all tools, wll eventually die, but it will be a slow death, rather than an overnight demise.
Be prepared for change, but don't feel paniced into changing everything you have *tomorrow*.
Having content limited to desktops only is going to become a major stumbling block with the increasing popularity of tablets.
Also, I'm wondering if Captivate and the other elearning applications have a future with Adobe if the Creative Suite applications are going to be their main focus.
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