Adobe opens Flash--How much?

Edward Cherlin echerlin at
Thu May 1 12:56:35 EDT 2008

Rob, could you cut through the marketese and give us a breakdown of
what this Adobe announcement really means for Gnash, if anything? It
seems to say that developers can use the SWF spec to write players for
the first time, not just content generators.

Notice that Apple and OLPC are not mentioned.

The funniest bit is this question rom the FAQ,

Why is Adobe _continuing_ to open access to Flash technology? (emphasis mine)

    Publication of an unrestricted SWF file format has long been
requested by the Adobe Flash developer community. The longstanding
publication of the SWF specification has fostered a vibrant ecosystem
of companies and developers who create experiences with Adobe Flash
technology and by removing the SWF licensing restrictions we are
allowing that growing ecosystem to use the file format for any
purpose, including the ability to playback SWF content.
    Additionally, Adobe intends to make Adobe Flash Player and Adobe
AIR for devices free, starting with the next major releases for
devices, along with publishing the device porting layer APIs. As a
result of these moves, OEMs, software developers, and content owners
will be able to deliver content and applications built with Adobe
Flash and Adobe AIR technologies without concerns about device
restrictions. By removing the licensing cost and restrictions, as well
as opening up the protocols and porting layer, Adobe is making it
easier for developers and partners to deliver more engaging
experiences to more of their customers, and ensuring that audiences
can engage with content no matter what device or medium they use.
Adobe Opens the FLV and SWF Formats
The Open Screen Project is dedicated to driving consistent rich
Internet experiences across televisions, personal computers, mobile
devices, and consumer electronics. The Open Screen Project is
supported by technology leaders, including Adobe, ARM, Chunghwa
Telecom, Cisco, Intel, LG Electronics Inc., Marvell, Motorola, Nokia,
NTT DoCoMo, Qualcomm, Samsung Electronics Co., Sony Ericsson, Toshiba
and Verizon Wireless, and leading content providers, including BBC,
MTV Networks, and NBC Universal, who want to deliver rich Web and
video experiences, live and on-demand across a variety of devices.

The Open Screen Project is working to enable a consistent runtime
environment – taking advantage of Adobe(R) Flash(R) Player and, in the
future, Adobe AIR™ -- that will remove barriers for developers and
designers as they publish content and applications across desktops and
consumer devices, including phones, mobile internet devices (MIDs),
and set top boxes. The Open Screen Project will address potential
technology fragmentation by allowing the runtime technology to be
updated seamlessly over the air on mobile devices. The consistent
runtime environment will provide optimal performance across a variety
of operating systems and devices, and ultimately provide the best
experience to consumers.


Specifically, this work will include:

    * Removing restrictions on use of the SWF and FLV/F4V specifications
    * Publishing the device porting layer APIs for Adobe Flash Player
    * Publishing the Adobe Flash(R) Cast™ protocol and the AMF
protocol for robust data services
    * Removing licensing fees – making next major releases of Adobe
Flash Player and Adobe AIR for devices free

Edward Cherlin
End Poverty at a Profit by teaching children business
"The best way to predict the future is to invent it."--Alan Kay

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