What’s up with the Flash?
I’m not talking about the flash on your cameras, although I admit, photographers are the worst violators of overusing Flash. Don’t get me wrong, Flash has its purpose. Heck, I use it on my own website. But, people do need to know that Flash does have its disadvantages, namely:
- Not all computers have the latest Flash reader, and your website may not work properly
- Many new computers, fresh out of the box, do not have any Flash reader installed
- Vista, Microsoft’s new operating system, often makes it difficult to install new programs
- Flash is often heavy and slow to load, which encourages website abandonment
- Google will often penalize websites which are heavy and slow to load
- Google often has difficulty reading the words embedded within a Flash program
- Flash is expensive to build and expensive to maintain
- If you don’t have the original, pre-compiled source code, you cannot modify your Flash
- Flash developers can hold you hostage and force you to use them to maintenance
- Flash often hinders your organic, natural, search engine optimization efforts
- Flash can be annoying, if not done well
- As of this writing, because a dispute between Apple and Adobe, the iPhone cannot view Flash
Other than that, I love Flash.
In my opinion, Flash should be used when it has a distinct purpose. You should not use Flash for the sake of Flash. Unless you are a Flash designer, you won’t impress anybody with cool Flash. You need to impress people with your work, your products, your accomplishments, and your potential – not your Flash.
Flash should be small nuggets of hard-working code strategically embedded throughout the website to achieve special effects – key words: special effects! Flash should not be used as the rule or as the platform.