1. Great post, Craig. Times are changing fast, often between contract development, signing and launch. As a result, the developers must choose a process and go with it.
    Does this mean all tools are obsolete by launch? Or that contracts should include update options (adding to cost when competitors who are bidding may not be so correct or honest)? How do you sell a client on the fact that things are changing so fast that yesterday’s development is truly yesterday?
    And…reality check…if the learning is good does it make a difference?
    What are those of us in the field to do?

    1. Actually they have two versions.

      The first version is Free – http://courselab.com/db/cle/root_id/download/doc.html – and you can also see that on the home page. As it notes, it is not a trial, not a demo and is full featured.

      2. HTML5 is superior to Flash, and yes while browsers will act differently on it, it is because of the video codecs, which at this time are not universal. Of course if you are not using video, then this is irrelevant. Equally, the end user does not have to worry, because the codecs are already built in.

      Please read my post on HTML5 which identifies the codecs, as well as the reasons it is superior to Flash.

      If you want to gauge just a small example of its power – check out Wilderness Adventure by the Arcade Fire. It uses geolocation – a feature that Flash does not offer. I recommend Chrome.

      HTML5 is less buggy then Flash, open source – so you can do quite a bit with it, accepts APIs – Flash doesn’t, 40% less resources hog, geolocation – which will become of significance with m-learning and some features people may want to include (BTW, one content authoring tool vendor has geolocation as part of its feature set), and many other benefits.

      Oh, and you do not have to download a plug-in or updates for HTML5, unlike you do with Flash, which as you know can cause headaches for some end users, because with some of the newer courses, Flash 8 or higher is required, and many businesses do not keep up with the latest.

      1. HTML5 isn’t inferior or superior to Flash. They can fulfill the same purposes but they are not necessarily intended for the same purposes. It’s foolish to make this comparison. And the variance in behavior in HTML5 isn’t entirely due to video codecs. It may interest you to know that much of the corporate and government world, as well as the the academic world is stuck in older browsers. HTML5 won’t work at all. Flash will and will be a superior choice in these instances for similar goals for many years to come.

        HTML5 is also not less buggy than Flash. And Flash isn’t necessarily closed source (the player is, the format is not). The “bugginess” is largely up to the person coding the interaction. If you think switching to HTML5 will change that…

        Flash will continue to have niche uses even after HTML5 gains full momentum, regardless of partisan rhetoric.

        You may not need to download a player or plug-in for HTML5. Instead… an entirely new browser for a standard that isn’t even finished yet.

        I get that HTML5 is pretty hot. I love the new capabilities it will offer when it’s finished and when my customer base is ready for it. But I don’t get this HTML5 vs Flash argument. It’s shallow, petty, and stupid. It rings of ignorance.

      2. Hmm, funny Amazon launched its newest solution for the Kindle in HTML5. Adobe is creating a product specifically for HTML5, rather than just having a kit you can use with CS5 and it continues to grow.

        Bottom Line:

        No matter how much info you provided to someone about its superiority over Flash, if you love Flash you will dismiss it and offer counters, regardless of the data. But, read the hundreds of web sites out there, not written by Apple or initially pro HTML5 and you will see the same things that I have been mentioning, for a while – at the end of the day, HTML5 will be superior to Flash.

  2. I can see that you’ve read and taken to heart Steve Jobs’ thoughts about Flash and HTML5…

    HTML5 is hopefully going to be a big leap forwards for the HTML standard once it actually becomes a standard (Reccommendation next year?), but you could probably be a bit more openminded about the shortcomings of HTML 5 due to the fact that it’s not yet a standard and still is “work in progress”:
    1. HTML5 is NOT a standard as of yet, won’t be for some time. Old version of HTML is umpteen years old, and different browsers STILL handle HTML code in different ways.

    2. Different browsers are implementing different parts of HTML5 in different ways, so support will vary. Will be great when they all share a common implementation of the coming full standard… sometime in the future.

    3. Updating – yep, you’re correct.. no need to update plugins any more! Instead, you have to upgrade the BROWSER itself as support for HTML5 is expanded. Large companies do not normally keep current with the latest versions of browsers. Loads of companies are still running on IE6 because it’s a major undertaking to upgrade the browser. This will ofc be no problem once everyone are on later version of the browsers. Google on the other hand went as far as to integrate Flash into Chrome.. so no need to download plugins any more, and everything is updated automatically.

    4. Flash in it’s latest incarnations support all the mobile functionalities you could wish for, like e.g. accessing mobile devices’ GPS positioning system.

    5. Don’t know where you get the “ressources hog” from and that HTML5 should use “40% less ressources”? This was certainly true with old versions of Flash, but it’s not any more. Apple was complaining for some time that Flash used too much ressources and CPU.. due to hardware-acceleration not being supported on the Macs because Apple wouldn’t allow it… With the new versions of Flash, where hardware acceleration is supported, this is no longer an issue. And Flash will soon support hardware accelerated 3D directly too, important for games and other interesting applications. Also, a lot of complaints was made that “websites with Flash load too slowly and consume too much ressources”.. yes of course they did.. try making a website in HTML5 having 10-15 advanced animated banners etc. running at the same time and see what happens to ressources and loading time. It is an issue of extraordinarily bad web-design trying to create pages like this.

    6. The only platform today where Flash really is an issue, is iOS devices because Apple does not ALLOW Flash to run in the browser. Flash still runs on these devices as Adobe AIR apps, but then you have to download them from Apples Appstore…. Flash runs on Android, WebOS, RIM QNX, with WP7 and others hopefully soon to come as well. The sad thing about this is that the first video EVER I saw of a mobile device running Flash was of an iPhone running Flash.

    7. New Cloud-based browser technologies will eliminate a lot of the issues releated to these differing technologies. The Skyfire browser allows youy to run basic Flash, like e.g. videos on your iOS device. Today, e.g. iSwifter allows you to run fully interactive Flash like games etc. on the iPad. OnLive is also a coming cloud service here, allowing you to run Flash, Silverlight, HTML5 etc. on any device like e.g. pads of all types.

    We’re all hoping for a brighter future with technologies making life easier.. today we see a “war” between the different technology-leaders with Apple on one side and “the rest of the world” on the other when it comes to the issue of Flash on mobile devices. And I think it’s all about business models, not what’s best for the users.

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