Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Apple Saves Us from Burden of Choice

Apple is once again saving us from ourselves. Oh, joy!!

First they helped protect us from the shocking experience of making calls with Google Voice. Whew! Can you imagine the disorientation of trying to use Google's dialing pad? Luckily, we didn't have to endure the torture of deciding for ourselves about downloading that free app, because Apple held it in approval limbo.

Now with Adobe making the full version of Flash player available for Android, BlackBerry, Symbian, Palm webOS and Windows Mobile, I was getting frightened that even iPhone and iPad users might have to worry about Flash availability too.

Fear not! Apple came to the rescue and stopped Adobe!

If not for Apple, I may have had the terrible experience of playing free Flash games and watching free Flash videos on my iPad.

I mean how did we ever survive the scourge on Flash on our desktop computers since it first appeared 1996? It's a wonder the whole planet didn't melt down considering it's now installed on ~97% of all computers.

Luckily, Apple's crash-proof operating system (well it crashes sometimes, but I'm sure it's someone else's fault, it has to be) and amazing ability to assemble standard parts into a highly proprietary computer has managed to keep us all going.

Thank God Apple managed to protect us from the multi-button mouse for so long, had the foresight to create an Apple key instead of having to use a standard keyboard and press that awful control key, and created proprietary expansion slots and docks so we wouldn't be tempted by naughty non-Apple accessories. Ooh, it makes Apple so special.

And now, we have further proof of Apple's commitment to the customer by shielding us from that bully Adobe trying to give us a free Flash player.

Flash must have been made by some terrorist sleeper cell. How devious to make such great, industry leading software as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Acrobat, then luring us in with the best rich media solution ever created for the internet.

Us iPhone and iPad users can enjoy a game whenever we want ... to pay for a game, watch videos whenever ... they get converted to HTML 5 video, and look at any web site on the internet whenever ... content creators have enough time, money and incentive to convert all the Flash content to HTML 5.

And some day soon, Apple will save us all from Microsoft and Intel (yeah, they were bad guys a few years back) and Motorola (they used to be the good CPU manufacturer, but turned bad when Intel offered a better deal) and Google (yes, they were good guys, too, but started their own mobile OS, obviously, the move of bad guys) and Adobe (yeah, used to be good until they started hogging the internet instead of letting Quicktime be the video player of choice) and Intel (they may become bad guys again, since Apple can make its own CPUs now) and whoever else gets in the way of Apple's plans for increased revenue and control.

Ooh, just imagine the wondrous potential of the iPad! By 2022, maybe as early as 2012, HTML 5 will be finalized. So you can rest assured that some day, HTML 5 will become supported on enough browsers and might even have enough good development tools that we'll be able to enjoy a limited amount of free content that's almost as good as what browsers supporting Flash have already.

HTML 5 might be a couple of years away, but it will be worth it not having to worry about whether something really cool was built with Flash. One thing is for sure, if something was made with Flash, it must not be good and thankfully I don't need to experience that for myself. Why, I'd never presume to doubt Steve Jobs' sincerity.

Even though I've used Flash for 14 years on my various Windows and Mac computers, even though Flash has been so far ahead of other technologies, both proprietary and open standard technologies, that for the entire 14 years developers have continued to choose Flash almost exclusively for animations, videos, games, ads, product demos and simulations, I believe Apple knows best.

It's obviously much better for the next year or two to purchase apps instead of using them for free, to purchase videos from iTunes or watch Youtube if I want to see videos and wait for the virtually unsupported new HTML 5 to become widespread.

And all that old content, who needs it? As Steve Jobs, says "We don't spend a lot of energy on old technology". All that stinky, old technology is worthless. Never you mind that UNIX is the 30 year old core technology of OS X. Don't think about the age of Quicktime, which was first released in 1991. It's a whole different thing. After all, Quicktime, OS X and Apple software has been updated many times since it was first released.

Flash's updates are not the same at all. When Adobe puts out a Flash update, they are probably just trying to slow glorious Apple products even more than they already have, adding new features just so Flash will use more CPU power.

Of course, Apple software updates never require any additional CPU power. I bet Snow Leopard would run just fine on my old 350MHz eMac. There's an idea, Apple! Why not get your super efficient, perfect, fancy new OS 10.6 to run on old Mac computers and show those lazy Adobe engineers that a few new features shouldn't hog any more CPU power!

It makes me laugh to think of the way those lazy Adobe engineers waste time making Flash run well on so many devices, operating systems and browsers. Don't they realize only Apple matters?

Come on people, forget about those nerds over at Google, Adobe and Microsoft. Proprietary is only cool if it's done by Apple. 


  1. Your words made me cry a little. But in a good way.


  3. First; I didn't know you had a blog or I might have commented more often.
    Second; That was a well written selection of words.
    Third: I can see you were venting in a funny way like no one else does.
    Fourth; Apple is the best. Been knowing that when I went from my Dell Windows to the first Mac. Not near the problem headaches. Don't mind being a slave to something that works well.
    AND that is my 2 cents!!!!

  4. Yeah apple's work well, but their lock down tactics and no user freedom is bad. I own a mac, cuz it works and is a prettier (Li)nix. And easy to use. They make good quality products that's the only reason they can pull these totalitarian methods of operating.

  5. @Anonymous

    Maybe you should look up the terms 'irony', 'sarcasm' and 'cynicism'.

  6. " for the entire 14 years developers have continued to choose Flash almost exclusively for animations, videos, games, ads, product demos and simulations"

    All kidding aside, this is why the internet is so backwards from where it should be.

  7. "The free content is banned" argument is just nonsense - there is a huge amount of free games in the App Store (how did they let that happen??) AND you get to watch all free video content out there provided it is available with HTML5 (how the heck did they include this if they wanted no free videos??).

    The matter of fact is that Flash is a proprietary technology designed for desktop, mouse-enabled computers with large screens. And given that Adobe's CTO said himself that "Flash Player on Windows has historically been faster than the Mac" and that Flash is one of the primary reasons for crashes on Mac I suppose they really not a partner Apple would like to DEPEND on.


  9. Apple's motive is irrelevant. The end result is that iPhone/iPad users are not given the choice of viewing Flash content.

    All I ask is the same freedom of choice I have on my Mac. Apple should allow us the choice to install Flash player or not as we see fit. We can always remove it if we don't like it.

    Regarding the Roughly Drafted link, he mentions a problem with mouse overs in Flash content, but this same issue affects non-Flash content as well. In most cases, it is not an issue at all.

    Most web pages, whether built with or without Flash, feature buttons, menus and/or images with mouse over effects. The good news is that these are often not critical features. Clicking is much more important.

  10. But are you are not choosing to not have flash by choosing to by an iPad/iPhone/iWhatever? Could you not have the option of flash by choosing to buy another device? Since when are people obliged to buy a consumer oriented product? Maybe if we lived in the USSR. Damn all that choice!

  11. Indeed, that's what it comes down to now. When I bought my iPod Touch, I assumed Flash Player would become available soon. With iPad, at least it's clear that Flash isn't an option.

    What a shame, because I want to like the iPad. My first reaction was, "I have to get one of those!"

    Knowing the iPad will purposely be hobbled, I will have to consider more full-featured Android or Palm devices for the future.

  12. lazy Adobe nerds for the win!!

  13. @Anonymous
    Re: "The matter of fact is that Flash is a proprietary technology designed for desktop, mouse-enabled computers with large screens."

    This is possibly the funniest, most delusional, ill-informed statement I've ever heard about Flash.

    Proprietary? Wrong. SWF is an open format. Go download the spec PDF and write your own Flash Player or SWF creation IDE if you like.

    Designed for desktop mouse-enabled computers with large screens? Really? Did you really just say that? It seriously makes me laugh and cry at the same time. I could create a SWF for a 1x1 pixel touch screen if I truly wanted to. C'mon dude!

  14. great style in writing, like sarcasm with a true base. :) besides you're right though apple itself did some great jobs (except the mentioned ones), my macbook e.g. can't be replaced in any way by a windows laptop - and so does microsoft politics fails sometimes as well. really strange somehow, i mean - they know about the topics, don't they?

  15. Yeah Flash will never work on an iPhone.


  16. @Flash Killer - You seriously believe that FLASH is the reason the internet is backwards? It has nothing to do with the browser wars, corporations who still hang onto IE6, or users who don't know a phishing scam from a tweet? C'mon man. Think.

    Flash filled in a gap, a need. And Macromedia revolutionized the internet as we know it. Now HTML5 is trying to do what Flash has done for years and is failing miserably. Check back with that in 10 years and see if it is working properly in all browsers...

  17. I'll buy an iPad this year anyway ... and I'll wait for 2022 so I can use it fully.
    I'm patient ...
    In meanwhile, I'll do what I've always done since 1999... to develop Flash applications, but this time, I won't have to worry about to run them on Apple anymore.
    What a relieve.
    Thank you Stevy! Love you dude.

  18. Ten years ago, Adobe already saw the potential of smart phones and made Flash Lite. It's still available and it runs on a 'smart phone' from 1999 so do the math on how much CPU power it takes. But Apple says it's 'not good enough'.

    I'm a Mac user for 18 years or so and I'll stick to OS X because it's the best but I'm not buying this nonsense about Flash from Steve.

  19. This just in: Mike Chambers clarifies the mouse over "problem" that has been abuzz the last day or two. As I mentioned earlier, "this same issue affects non-Flash content as well. In most cases, it is not an issue at all."

  20. I slow-clapped all by myself when I read this - good stuff!

  21. I loved your article. It was just the right amount of sarcasm. Although because it is true it actual hurts a bit. I've owned a Mac since my SE30. I've owned Adobe products since PM2. I began a UG because of MM's apps. I resent that good companies get all caught up in politics... that has to be what it is about. Hoping to make people have to choose... betting that they will follow where lead... with me that may actually bite them in the butt... Linux is looking better and better. I just hope Adobe will built its apps for Linux, then it's good-bye OSX... I think Flash is important in this world. Now browsers... what a train wreck that subject is.

  22. KaCe, I'm coming from a similar place. I've owned Macs for 15 years and Adobe software just as long. I've been using Google for over a decade.

    I think of them all as old friends and it truly is sad to see the infighting among these companies. Weren't they all supposed to team up to overthrow Microsoft?

  23. you my friend are brilliant!

  24. @iKidNot But haven't you heard? M$ isn't (as) evil anymore!
    I've always found these constantly shifting alliances between corporations and their perception by the market at large intriguing. I mean, look Apple's big brother ad from 1984, they were the underdogs, and now they're making their transition to becoming the oppressors they portrayed in the ad. I figure at the end of the day, any company with too much power and an all to strong sense of self-importance ends up taking advantage of their position. If we're lucky they get slapped on the wrist before things get too bad. But lately, Apple's been getting away with a whole lot of shit.

  25. You're right, Da Juice. It's the same old story of power and corruption. Luckily, we have goverment agencies that will step in and help if it becomes too flagrant. Apple is starting to feel the pressure and has opened up the app store to apps created with Flash. Flash in Safari is still not allowed, though.

    Oh, here is a bit of irony–I'm writing this on my iPad! Yeah, I hurt my leg and was bedridden for a few weeks and the iPad was the best solution for my particular needs. I can connect to my Mac Pro via screen sharing and work from bed.

    There are going to be more options, soon, though. Lots of tablets are coming in the next few months.