Why I hate Flash (and why CS3 is a blessing and a curse)

Since Carla asked …

I don’t hate Flash the concept, or Flash the delivery platform, I just hate authoring Flash. Flash is hands down the best way to deliver video on the web, and I’m really exciting about Apollo and AMP.

However …

I just got Adobe Creative Suite 3, which includes Flash CS3. There’s just so much about Flash (the application) that drives me insane – the way the workspace seems to always need more desktop real-estate than you’ve got, the way palettes fade out, and a million other minor nit-picky things that make it unpleasant to work with.

That said, that’s not the reason for my comment yesterday. That was out of the frustration of learning that using their new FLVPlaybackCaptioning component (which lets you really easily add captioning to any FLVPlayback component) requires you to port the application to Actionscript 3. Realistically, it’s probably a good thing to port to AS3, because it’s actually a decent language, but I had hoped with something as important as closed captioning, they’d allow easy integration into existing applications.

Beyond that, they’ve changed the way FLVPlayback works such that it no longer loads FLV files from a URL if that URL includes a query string (download.php?video=1234). That makes dynamic video playback a bit of a pain – you need to move to a mod_rewrite solution (download.php/video/1234/.flv) on the server side to trick Flash into loading the video. Furthermore, they haven’t fixed the crashing-bug related to loading large (>200meg) FLV videos on Windows using FLVPlayback.

Anyways, to sum it up, I love the delivery side of Flash, hate the authoring side. That’s how it goes though.

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