Currently, I am working with Adobe Flash . And, I noticed that today’s 2nd search trends is “Adobe Flash”.
That is a bad news for Adobe Flash’s perspective, but the industry is in favour of HTML5 as an alternative(?) to Flash.
This is interesting news for me now, anyhow.
—- News starts below—
Facebook info security chief: ‘Death to Adobe Flash’
The social network’s Internet protection provocateur is wasting no time in his new post. He wants this buggy software condemned to death.
Add another enemy to the list of people who despise Adobe Flash Player: Facebook’s new chief information security officer Alex Stamos, who the social network poached from Yahoo YHOO -0.34% last month.
Adobe’s ADBE 0.55% often flaw-ridden software Flash has long been a point of contention among Internet security experts. Its monthly, and occasionally more frequent “emergency”patches, are a nuisance to security pros who must perpetually update their versions in order to keep their machines clear of cybercriminal malware infections. Even the late Apple AAPL -0.01% CEO Steve Jobs penned a takedown of the insecure browser plugin in 2010.
Over the weekend, Stamos directed his own frustration at the San Jose, Calif.-based company’s code via a couple of tweets. “It is time for Adobe to announce the end-of-life date for Flash and to ask the browsers to set killbits”—meaning instructions to disable the software—”on the same day,” he wrote. “Even if 18 months from now, one set date is the only way to disentangle the dependencies and upgrade the whole ecosystem at once.”
Stamos has long been a champion of improving the safety of the Internet, even getting into an heated confrontationwith Michael S. Rogers, director of the National Security Agency, at a conference earlier this year over the prospect of adding “backdoors” into Silicon Valley’s encrypted products. His latest call to arms? Presumably, the comment was prompted by a series of previously unknown, or “zero-day,” Flash vulnerabilities that were released into the wildover the past week, the result of Italian spyware vendor Hacking Team getting royally hacked.
Stamos’ execution plea begs the question: Does the Internet really need Adobe Flash? Security analyst and blogger Graham Cluley, for one, says no: “The truth is that the company would probably gain a lot more respect from the internet community if it worked towards this ultimate fix for the Flash problem, rather than clinging on to the belief that it might be able to one day make Flash secure,” he wrote on his blog. “As it is, the only people who truly seem to love Adobe Flash these days are the criminals themselves.”
That assessment is backed up by investigative cybercrime reporter Brian Krebs, who recently tried to go a month without using the Adobe software. “So, rather than continue the patch madness and keep this insecure software installed, I decided to the pull the…er…plugin,” he wrote. In fact, Krebs caved only twice. (He needed to watch an instructional video for a home gym and a live-streamed legislative hearing, he said.)
Interestingly, Facebook FB -0.40% , Stamos’ new employer, is one company that has helped perpetuate the use of Flash on the Web, especially as the social network aggressively pushes its video business, which, as Fortunereporter Erin Griffith will tell you, has been tremendously successful. (Lots of companies have been forced to accommodate the faulty plugin, Facebook just happens to be a highly visible one.)
The Internet seems to be slowly weaning itself off the buggy Flash software. At the beginning of the year, Google’s GOOG 2.66% YouTube, a rival for Facebook’s video advertising dollars, dropped default support for Flash in favor of HTML5. Adobe itself has been deemphasizing its own product lately, too. As the Verge’s Rich McCormicknotes:
YouTube’s move highlights the shrinking relevance of Adobe Flash on the modern internet. Adobe itself has spent the last few years severing many of its ties with the product — the company’s Flash 2012 Flash roadmap narrowed its focus to gaming and “premium” video, and in 2011, the company killed Flash Player for mobile, saying at the time that HTML5 was the“best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms.” In 2015, YouTube has realized that Flash is not the best solution for web video, full stop.
Will Facebook eventually have the same realization?Fortune reached out to ask whether the company has any plan or intention to eventually do away with Flash. Facebook did not provide a response before press time, but we will update this story once we receive a reply.
Such structural paradigm shifts have a precedent. Lately, there’s been another trend happening on the Web—a move to another improved standard. Many websites are transitioning now to secure their traffic with encryption through the adoption of HTTPS, which protects users from spies and hackers. That includes Netflix NFLX -0.71% ,the Washington Post, and the U.S. government, to name a few.
Mozilla, maker of the popular Firefox web browser, has also announced its intention to advance HTTPS by deprecating HTTP, a standard, though insecure, data transmission protocol. As it happens, Firefox temporarily suspended Flash on Tuesday due to the spate of recent “security risks.”
Perhaps one day Adobe, coaxed by Internet browsers and the demands of their disgruntled users, will set a deadline to eradicate Flash once and for all. But with no end in sight, that seems unlikely. As Stamos explains, “Nobody takes the time to rewrite their tools and upgrade to HTML5 because they expect Flash4Eva. Need a date to drive it.” (Fortunealso contacted Adobe to inquire about the company’s long-term plans for Flash. We will update this story with any additional comments.)
Maybe it is time for Adobe to schedule a date on the chopping block for Flash. That’d sure put a smile on Stamos’ face. No doubt the late Jobs would be pleased, too.
—- another one —
The Call To Kill Adobe’s Flash In Favor Of HTML5 Is Rising
The technology industry finally agrees on one thing: Flash must die.
The fever pitch to bring the death of Adobe Flash is accelerating.
Following the high profile breach of the surveillance company Hacker Team, critical zero day bugs were discovered in Flash that allowed attackers to take over user’s machines to steal information or hold them for ransom.
In response to these critical bugs, Mozilla went to rather extraordinary efforts to block the Flash plugin from its Firefox browser. Adobe quickly released a patch (Flash version 188.8.131.52) and Mozilla’s blocklist page shows that the issue has been resolved.
After the Hacker Team Flash vulnerabilities became public over the weekend, Facebook’s chief security officer Alex Stamos called for the end of Flash once and for all.
Even if 18 months from now, one set date is the only way to disentangle the dependencies and upgrade the whole ecosystem at once.
— Alex Stamos (@alexstamos) July 12, 2015
Outside of the Firefox patch, Adobe has been relatively silent on the most recent maladies of Flash. Adobe has not announced an end-of-life cycle for Flash nor given any indication that it plans on doing so.
Flash has long been the dominant video and rich media plugin for the Web, to the chagrin of technologists and users alike. For users, Flash requires constant updates and does not work with most mobile browsers. On iPhones or iPads, it has never been supported as Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs famously lambasted Flash for its lack of battery efficiency and security shortly before his death. Google would follow by ending support for Flash on Android in December 2011.
For its part, Microsoft has realized that the era of the video plugin for the Web is basically over. Microsoft has announced the end-of-life cycle for its Silverlight video plugin and has stated that it will not support Silverlight in the forthcoming Edge browser for Windows 10.
Security researcher Graham Cluley elaborates on what he believes Adobe should do with Flash:
If Adobe Flash is ever going to be kicked to the kerb (as it seems it should be) then a date clearly needs to be declared to drive the push to a Flash-free world. It’s not just important for browsers, of course, but also for companies whose websites and in-house applications might rely heavily on the technology.
The problem is that perhaps Adobe doesn’t feel happy acknowledging that securing Flash is beyond them, and so is unwilling to drop the product. The truth is that the company would probably gain a lot more respect from the internet community if it worked towards this ultimate fix for the Flash problem, rather than clinging on to the belief that it might be able to one day make Flash secure.
Bring Forth The Era Of HTML5 Video
One of the reasons the video plugins like Flash and Silverlight are no longer needed on the Web is due to the rise of HTML5 video standards. Microsoft Edge will take advantage of HTML5 video tools including DASH (Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP) from MPEG. Google has adopted a variety of HTML5 video standards for its Chrome browser such as V8 and V9 variants of WebM. Apple supports H.264 while Mozilla has long tried to push Theora as the standard HTML5 video standard on the Web.
The reason for the push by browser makers to adopt HTML5 and Web standards for video is because the various stacks offer much more flexibility and support than proprietary systems owned by the likes of Adobe, Microsoft and Apple (with Quicktime).
The major technology companies do not often agree with each other when it comes to technology standards and the direction of the industry. The quibbling over various versions of HTML5 video standards is distinct proof of that. But the one thing they can all agree on is that Flash must finally die so that HTML5 may rise.