Thursday, 12 December 2013

3 reasons not to be flash

Hard to find? Blank pages? Slow to show? Perhaps the web site uses "Flash" technology where plain text and conventional graphics would be more effective. Here are three of the issues:

1. Text contained in Flash files is notoriously hard to index, meaning that search engines cannot easily provide meaningful results for Flash oriented web sites. Over time, this situation will change, but can web site owners afford to lose traffic when standard HTML text is universally indexable?

2. Flash does not generally run on Apple Mac computers, iPhones and iPads "out of the box", thereby disenfranchising a growing sector of the potential audience.

3. Flash file sizes are many times larger than those of HTML, and as a result take correspondingly longer to download and display. This is a significant factor in an area with generally low bandwidth connections.

Flash is a proprietary system of Adobe that may (have had) its place. It is not needed to watch video web content now that open standards like HTML5 have been created for the mobile era. In fact, Adobe announced in November 2011 that it will stop development of Flash for mobile devices in favour of developing tools utilizing HTML5.

Maximise the audience - support open standards!

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