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Is it ta-ta for Flash?

Interview with a Flash Harriet

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And useful, career-wise. I mean, as soon as Firefox upgrades to ECZEMA script 4...

Cough. That's never going to happen.

What? I thought you said...

I did say. But the ECMA standardisation committee had a titanic falling-out with itself, cumulating - to Adobe's chagrin - with ECMAscript Edition 4 being abandoned.

Well, I wouldn't trust a committee that couldn't think of a better name than 'ECMAscript'.

Quite so. However, it has now sealed the deal by publishing the ECMAscript Edition 5 standard, despite the opposition of IBM, who wanted to put in a decimal floating point type.

You what?

Those radical anarchists at IBM wanted a decimal floating type included in the language specification, so that £0.20 plus £0.30 might be evaluated to exactly half a nicker, rather than the traditional binary floating point answer of 49.9999996p. The whole standardisation story is quite fascinating; view it here.

Thanks, I promise I'll watch it straight after I've finished all the cat videos on YouTube. So where does this leave Flash and ActionScript?

Standards-wise, it leaves it up the rivulet with the oar overboard. In an open-standards and -source world, it emphasises Flash's closed nature.

And otherwise-wise?

My feeling is that Adobe has not been as good a custodian of Flash as Macromedia was. For example, its refusal to patch FlexBuilder 3 to track a long-standing Eclipse upgrade comes over as arrogant and high-handed. Google has long since established it is possible to do neat client-side applications without Flash. And then there is this whole Apple/bug business. It should be more careful.

So is it TTFF?

Eh?

Ta Ta For Flash.

I hope not. As xkcd noted, we would definitely miss one aspect of it. Without Flash, we wouldn't have the beautiful programs of Amanita design, which shine like jewels discovered in the trash heap. ®

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