According to the latest episode from the Boagworld podcast, “you might be wasting your time designing with CSS” because now that Flash is open source, it’s “going to be everywhere and is the platform we should now be developing on”.
Flash versus CSS? What?
Let’s backtrack a bit. Adobe recently announced the Open Screen Project, which will implement a “consistent runtime environment” for Flash (and AIR) across all platforms. All, as in every medium imaginable: computers, mobile devices, TVs, and everything in between. Adobe working hand in hand with some of the biggest names in media and electronics to make this possible. For a company that’s always created proprietary technologies, moving to an open mindset is a bold move. But this will cement the popularity and innovativeness of Flash.
See how silly this bout has become? All these web technologies are not direct competitors. (Except for Silverlight, perhaps, but I’m not even sure if it still stands a chance.)
But there’s a very real question being posed here. Should HTML/CSS coders move on to what seems to be the greener pasture that is Flash?
I firmly believe that not every website in the world has to be done in Flash for it to be jaw-droppingly awesome. There will be Flash developers who believe exactly the opposite. There will be hybrid web designers who can straddle between both and don’t really feel the pressure. Any of the three will prevail in the future, but from the looks of it right now, there’s still a place for plain old HTML and CSS no matter how big Flash has become.
Besides, both camps are still considerably immature. The web in general is, actually. It’s just that with all the effort spent into creating websites and the money that can be made from them, web technologies seem complete already. But they are just as dynamic and unpredictable as the web itself.