The iPad and me

I don’t really like to do opinion pieces. On the subject of technology, like religion, sometimes it doesn’t really matter what you say; both sides never really listen to each other. I don’t want to add another pointless my side is better than yours article. But I think it is sad when people say that such and such is bad and should die. Like it is currently the case with Flash and the whole iPad brouhaha. What I think these people don’t consider is the human impact behind this.

If Flash was to go away tomorrow, I’d find myself without a job. Well, I’d need time to learn another language and then I’d find another job but it wouldn’t be the same thing. I am really glad I found Flash and ActionScript 3. This is what I want to do for at least the next 5-10 years. What I like about it is that it speaks to both my programmer and creative side. It is also fast-paced; in the web agency world, you move from projects to projects really fast and you have to keep up with technology at the same time. It might seems weird but I really like that; no time to get bored. If it wasn’t for Flash, I don’t think think I would love my job as much as I do.

After the iPad announcement I found myself a bit confused and stressed about my future. The future of Flash seemed uncertain so my future seemed uncertain to. Not uncertain because of the evolution of technology (like HTML5) but because a company decided what the outcome should be. If all Apple products stop supporting Flash, this is not good news to me. What possibilities I had would lessen. Some would say that I shouldn’t tie myself to a technology, I know, and if I have too I will learn something knew, but as I said before I really like Flash. That made me think that it’s not only companies that can choose who gets to live or to fade (technology wise). Us, as developers, can put our weight in the balance too. As long as there will be people producing get content for the Flash platform, it will continue to thrive. If I like Flash that much, I must not be alone and from reading all those article that take Flash’s defense, I think I am right. So I feel more at ease now. The future is still uncertain but certainly less gloomy.

One last thing about the iPad. Zeldman in his post states that the computer of tomorrow is a computer that is dead simple but that in return doesn’t give all powers over it for the sake of usability, like the iPhone and the iPad do. I think that a portion of the population in fact wants that. Right now this portion might be big, but I think it will shrink because it doesn’t consider that the children that are raised right now have never seen the time when there was no computers. These will be way more computer literate than my parents lets say. For that I think a device like the iPad is closer to a toy than to a tool. If it wanted to dominate the netbook market, than it will fail. We don’t really know what is the role the netbook is going to take, but by making one that is limited in its usage, you also reduce your chance of getting it right.

Well that’s all I had to say.

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  1. #1 by lvacs - February 3rd, 2010 at 13:28

    I have come across some articles about the ipad and I am a bit skeptical about the it as well. I love flash as well and hope it doesn’t die. Nice post by the way.

  2. #2 by Kevin - February 3rd, 2010 at 15:16

    Well said. I personally feel that the current uproar over Flash on the iPad is overblown. Yes, I am a Flex developer and would LOVE if my apps would run on the iPhone/iPad, but the apps I develop are also not targeting users of those platforms. Even Apple itself stated that the iPad isn’t meant to replace your computer or your phone — it is a new category of personal device. In the future, yes we may all be carrying around something like this to replace everything in my laptop bag; but the future isn’t here yet.

    I can also see why Apple is hesitant to allow plug-ins on the iPad’s Safari. A good example is scaling. Apple’s mobile browsers are designed to be scaled via pinch/zoom and they do an excellent job of it. By default, apps written in Flex don’t scale when a user changes the browser’s text size (unlike regular Flash apps). Not a big deal and certainly relatively easy to resolve, but it’s just one of many things that Apple is likely having to consider.

  3. #3 by chris - February 9th, 2010 at 16:33

    I feel we Flash developers will always have a job and should not worry. Flash is everywhere. A majority of desktops have the plugin installed. The mobile browsers [specifically iPhone and iPads] make up such a small part of total browsers. I think HTML will be playing catchup much like it has with the current plugin. HTML 5 has canvas but by the time browsers have adopted it fully there will be Flash v15 which will have awesome features.

  4. #4 by drj - March 10th, 2010 at 19:19

    You know what? No cause for alarm! The only reason apple doesn’t support flash is not because of hardware/software issues. It’s only enjoying its monopoly of iTunes Store. Flash makes it easy to watch videos and listen to mp3 tracks online.

    Enabling flash on the iPhone/iPad will mean a great deal to the future of flash but a bad business move.

  5. #5 by Lauren Wright - July 9th, 2010 at 12:22

    Mobile browsers are still kind of crude if you compare it to the desktop browsers we use on PC.’”*

  6. #6 by Muhammad Morgan - July 26th, 2010 at 12:18

    there would be a great demand for mobile browsers in the coming years that is for sure.`,-

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