Advancing Flash Video

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2007-09-20 Print this article Print

"> One way the company is doing that is through support for the H.264 standard for video compression, which is gaining adoption across devices such as video cameras, MP3 players, cell phones, game consoles and more. "Were building H.264 into the Flash Player," Lynch said. "You can go to the Moviestar Lab [on Adobes Labs site[ and get it now," he said. "Were also supporting HD-quality video inside the Flash Player."
Lynch said Flash video accounts for at least 70 percent of the video content on the Internet. "We will keep advancing Flash video," he said.
In addition to H.264 support, Lynch said the Moviestar update to Flash Player 9 includes new features, enhancements and bug fixes for Windows, Macintosh and Linux versions of Flash Player 9, including multicore support for vector rendering; full-screen mode with hardware scaling; Flash Player cache for common platform components, such as the Flex framework; and support for MSAA (Microsoft Active Accessibility) in the Windows plug-in. Lynch demonstrated how the Flash Player could run a complex animation 70 percent faster by taking advantage of the multicore processor. Adoption of the Flash Player has been "unprecedented," Lynch said. Although it took Flash Player 7 up to 18 months to gain 90 percent adoption, it took Flash Player 8 about a year to achieve the same level of adoption, and it has taken Flash Player 9 less than a year to achieve the same thing. Read here why Apollo Software got the name Adobe Air. "That is unprecedented," Lynch said. "No technology has been adopted so quickly or so ubiquitously." Lynch said Adobe will keep pushing the technology forward, even through the core language behind Flash is ActionScript, a scripting language for Flash developers that is based on ECMAScript. The latest version of the language, ActionScript 3.0, features E4X, or ECMAScript for XML, support. "E4X lets you work with XML more effectively," Lynch said. "You can access XML as if it were a data structure inside ActionScript." Adobe has open-sourced the virtual machine inside the Flash Player, known as Tamarin, and donated it to Mozilla, which will be putting the virtual machine technology inside the Firefox browser, he said. Lynch also discussed Adobes Flex tool set for building rich Internet applications and called on Adrian Ludwig, an Adobe product manager, to give an update on the upcoming version of Flex—Flex 3, also known by the code name "Moxie." Adobe is in the process of open-sourcing the Flex framework. Moxie enhancements will feature language intelligence, support for AIR, code refactoring, memory and performance profilers, SWF (Shockwave Flash) file size reduction through persistent framework caching, a visualization component and designer workflow, Ludwig said. "With the Framework Cache, applications that used to be hundreds of kilobytes or thousands of kilobytes can now be in the tens of K," Ludwig said. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis in programming environments and developer tools.

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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