TUAW thoroughly and beautifully trashed Adobe’s response to the supposed comment of Steve Jobs that Adobe are lazy and thus why he wont support Flash on the iPhone and iPad in their article, “The Flash saga continues: Adobe responds to charges of “laziness”.
In the comments section on Lynch’s post, he makes the following statement: “I can tell you that we don’t ship Flash with any known crash bugs, and if there was such a widespread problem historically Flash could not have achieved its wide use today.” That’s an interesting statement. Let’s consider the particulars of it.
Lynch claims Flash is installed on 98% of computers on the internet. If we’re being extremely generous, we could say that OS X makes up 10% of those computers, and we could say Linuxruns on an additional 1%. So, out of all the computers hooked up to the internet that run Flash, 89% of them are running some flavor of Windows. If Flash runs just fine on Windows but has middling to terrible performance on other platforms (which is usually the case), it’s all too easy to dismiss these problems as not being “widespread” — even if millions of OS X and Linux users are experiencing poor performance from Flash, many millions more Windows users aren’t.
Lynch himself admits that “given identical hardware, Flash Player on Windows has historically been faster than the Mac, and it is for the most part the same code running in Flash for each operating system.” You know what? That’s exactly the problem right there. That’s where the accusations of laziness are coming from. If Flash is optimized for Windows but doesn’t run well on Unix-based platforms using the same hardware, it’s Adobe’s job to modify its code to improve performance. It’s not Apple’s job, it’s not Linus Torvalds’s job, it’s Adobe’s job. Even Microsoft knows better than to expect Office for Windows to run in Mac OS X with the same code; that’s why Office for Mac exists.
Gruber gives us the lowdown about what Adobe is referring to with the 98 or 99% in his post, “Who can do something about those blue boxes?”
Flash is no longer ubiquitous. There’s a big difference between “everywhere” and “almost everywhere”. Adobe’s own statistics on Flash’s market penetration claim 99 percent penetration as of last month. That’s because, according to their survey methodology, they’re only counting “PCs” — which ignores the entire sort of devices which have brought about this debate. Adobe is arguing that Flash is installed on 99 percent of all web browsers that support Flash, not 99 percent of all web browsers.
Both are worth reading. Adobe really do deserve a big kick in the arse for their years of abuse of Mac owners with their progressively more bloated and buggy software. I really do wish Apple had bought Macromedia, not Adobe. Now we’ve just ended up with all the crap under one roof instead. Imagine if Apple had done with Flash and Fireworks what they did with Final Cut Pro. Then we wouldn’t be in this mess and I wouldn’t have to block Flash in Firefox and Safari just to guarantee a useable web experience instead of Flash wasting large amounts of memory and CPU all the time.