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RIP Adobe Flash – It’s About Time

I love Adobe, and I have great respect for Adobe Flash. It has outlived its usefulness, though, and the end of Flash is really long overdue at this point. Giving it until 2020 is really more mercy than it probably deserves at this point.

The world can breathe a collective sigh of relief. Adobe announced this week that it will officially end development of the Adobe Flash Player at the end of 2020. To be honest, though, the end of 2020 is still a long way off, and the death of Flash is actually long overdue.

In an open letter to the world, Adobe explained how it arrived at that decision, “But as open standards like HTML5, WebGL and WebAssembly have matured over the past several years, most now provide many of the capabilities and functionalities that plugins pioneered and have become a viable alternative for content on the web. Over time, we’ve seen helper apps evolve to become plugins, and more recently, have seen many of these plugin capabilities get incorporated into open web standards. Today, most browser vendors are integrating capabilities once provided by plugins directly into browsers and deprecating plugins.”

Steve Jobs provided a fairly comprehensive argument for pulling the plug on Adobe Flash seven years ago. His 1,700-word manifesto, explaining why Apple chose to give Flash the cold shoulder in iOS, provides a detailed explanation of the reasons Flash should cease to exist. The two points that stand out in Jobs’ letter are the argument that newer and better video formats exist, and that Flash is riddled with security and performance issues.

Two years ago, there was a leak of tools used by the Hacking Team that revealed the continued weakness of Flash. I wrote at the time, “What they’ve found so far is that Galileo relies on a variety of zero-day exploits to circumvent detection and plant the agent software. Three of the four zero-day vulnerabilities that have been discovered so far are in Adobe Flash.”

Read the full post on Forbes: The Death Of Adobe Flash Is Long Overdue.

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