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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:21 AM   #1
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Apple's Hiring of Kevin Lynch Questioned Amid Concerns Over His Staunch Defense of Flash




Following yesterday's news that Adobe Chief Technology Officer Kevin Lynch will be leaving to join Apple as vice president of Technologies, reporting to Bob Mansfield, there has been a considerable amount of discussion about the move. In particular, observers have pointed to the role Lynch played in backing Flash in the face of Apple's insistence that it was a technology with too many problems and which needed to be left behind.

Daring Fireball's John Gruber has been particularly vocal about Apple's hiring of Lynch, pointing back to several events such as his continued cheerleading for Flash as recently as two years ago as evidence that he is a "bozo" who will turn out to be a poor hire for Apple. "Bozo" was a favorite term of Steve Jobs, who used it to refer to people who were not of the caliber they believed themselves to be, and former Apple evangelist Guy Kawasaki has highlighted the "Bozo Explosion" phenomenon described by Jobs as one of the biggest potential threats to a company.
Quote:
A players hire A+ players.

Actually, Steve believed that A players hire A players - that is people who are as good as they are. I refined this slightly - my theory is that A players hire people even better than themselves. It's clear, though, that B players hire C players so they can feel superior to them, and C players hire D players. If you start hiring B players, expect what Steve called "the bozo explosion" to happen in your organization.
An argument can obviously be made that Lynch was a staunch defender of Flash because it was his job to be one, but his role as Chief Technology Officer also means that he had considerable influence over the direction of Adobe's efforts with respect to Flash. As a result, Lynch's continued defense of Flash even as it was clear that mobile devices were driving technology toward HTML5 solutions has raised eyebrows and generated concern over whether he will be a good fit for Apple.

In one final dig at Lynch, Gruber highlights Adobe's 2009 introduction of iPhone apps built using Flash, featuring Lynch starring in a Mythbusters parody that included putting an iPhone into a blender and crushing another one with a steamroller as part of an effort to get Flash to run on the device.


Article Link: Apple's Hiring of Kevin Lynch Questioned Amid Concerns Over His Staunch Defense of Flash
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:23 AM   #2
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hopefully this is not gonna be browett part II.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:25 AM   #3
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Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer. This flash guru will have his uses for Apple.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:26 AM   #4
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He was an advocate for his company and his brand. Doesn't mean he loved flash as a product. He's an adult, he can separate professional decisions from personal ones.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:27 AM   #5
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I truly hope Tim would indeed lead the company in the right direction.

If Apple does need to hire one guy, I prefer bringing back Scott Forstall instead of this Chief Flash Officer. (At least Scott is an A player.)
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:29 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Mic'sBook View Post
If Apple does need to hire one guy, I prefer bringing back Scott Forstall instead of this Chief Flash Officer. (At least Scott is an A player.)
Bring Scott back to do what? Take iOS backwards? Release another half baked product like maps and passbook?
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:30 AM   #7
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One quick way to check where his loyalties lie: Check his company issue MacBook Air/Pro to see if he took the trouble of installing Flash on it. Easy...
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:31 AM   #8
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he will be looking into bringing trhe Adobe Suite to iOS

Last edited by needfx; Mar 20, 2013 at 09:39 AM. Reason: syntax
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:31 AM   #9
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This guy seems to be fun ....

And at Adobe he just did his job - part of it was advocating for flash, .... nobody knows what is true thoughts were or what he said in internal meetings about it and he probably learned either way good lessons from it.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:32 AM   #10
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giving too much importance to Gruber
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mic'sBook View Post
I truly hope Tim would indeed lead the company in the right direction.

If Apple does need to hire one guy, I prefer bringing back Scott Forstall instead of this Chief Flash Officer. (At least Scott is an A player.)
An A player? He was a guy that refused to accept any blame for the half assed maps app they released and was, by all accounts, terrible to work with.

In my office....that gets you the door too.

-------------------------------------------------

As far as this new hire goes....I'm not going to sit here and pretend I know enough about talent evaluation of tech workers to say whether or not this is a good hire. But I wouldn't say that his defense of Flash is necessarily a strike against him. Guy was an exec at Adobe.....he would have been doing his job poorly if he was doing anything other than a full throated defense of his product.

Time will tell whether or not this is a good hire and if he somehow isn't....it won't make a hill of beans difference for the vast majority of us.

Not sure why users of a company's products become such micro-analyzers of corporate hiring activity.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:36 AM   #12
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This obsession with Flash is sickening to me. People get over it. Technologists are not perfect when it comes to technology directions.

I do not know about this guy but trashing him publicly like this does not speak very well of Apple observers. They come across vengeful. This almost feels like these observers following through their defense of Steve's position on Flash. It does not need any defense. The war was won. Behave like winners.

Tim Cook of course had been there all along and knows the Apple Adobe relationship, both positive and negative.

Question is: Who sought out whom and why?

Until that is known, all this haranguing over flash is rehashing a 5 year old discussion which is not relevant any more.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:36 AM   #13
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I'm sure the paycheck and stock will help him loose his affection for Flash.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:36 AM   #14
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Gruber doesn't sound insightful; he sounds jealous.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:37 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by uknowimright View Post
giving too much importance to Gruber
You could say that, except for the fact that Gruber is right at least 95% of the time...
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:38 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
Bring Scott back to do what? Take iOS backwards? Release another half baked product like maps and passbook?
I think we can't say Scott Forstall is the only culprit of the Maps fiasco. It was the time when Apple was removing all things related with Google (Maps, YouTube… even Safari in OS X now doesn't even include the Google bookmark by default). Launching the half-baked Maps may not (or may) be his decision.

All I mean is, it seems that this Flash guy isn't as good as Scott if Apple had to choose one.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:39 AM   #17
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What was he supposed to do, say Flash is horrible?

He was supportive of his company's products; he will do that at Apple as well. And he obviously won't be working on Flash implementation at Apple (it's been dead at Apple for a while, and it's dying everywhere else).

Seems like a good hire.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:39 AM   #18
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Not agreeing with Apple doesn't make you a "bozo"

As if defending Flash makes someone unsuitable... There is still today a lot of stuff that is much better and smoother in Flash than in Objective-C. Of course also the other way. But people that have worked in both fields will usually agree that XCode for example is a subpar development environment.
Just saying: it's not as if Apple did everything right that Flash got wrong.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:40 AM   #19
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I think this is only a concern for Apple, the BOD and stockholders. If it's a concern at all. Anyone else weighing in with such vitriol should pretty much shut up.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:40 AM   #20
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to be fair html5 is far superior its just it will take a few years for it to overtake flash and in this time the is alot of websites that cant be accessed on apple devices. flash works great on my note2, even better than my mac. i don't think the iphone misses it too much but the ipad does.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:42 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mic'sBook View Post
I think we can't say Scott Forstall is the only culprit of the Maps fiasco. It was the time when Apple was removing all things related with Google (Maps, YouTube… even Safari in OS X now doesn't even include the Google bookmark by default). Launching the half-baked Maps may not (or may) be his decision.

All I mean is, it seems that this Flash guy isn't as good as Scott if Apple had to choose one.
The buck stops with him, end of story. His team, his division, his responsibility. He was responsible for the lion's share of that mess, and you know something's wrong when Jony Ive won't even have a meeting with the guy. That's NOT someone who should be running anything.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:43 AM   #22
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Seems to me someone who staunchly defends their company's products in public would be an asset.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:43 AM   #23
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Flash is not bad, it's just not for mobile devices (for some reason). Flash on computers is still unrivaled, just go to www.newgrounds.com and see what type of games can be created with it, in your browser, with minimal programming knowledge. Try doing that any other way (with HTML5? don't be silly).

Games and short animations are what Flash excels at, but animations can be converted to videos, and games written natively for the mobile device are just a better idea as they are more optimized and were designed with the screen size and lack of keyboard/mouse in mind. Even if you could run Flash on the iPhone/iPad, you would have difficulty playing Flash games that way.

Any other uses of Flash (banners, websites, upload/gallery applets, etc…) are just pointless and were bad to begin with, that's not what Flash is for.

So there's no real reason to have Flash on mobile devices, especially if it runs poorly.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:46 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by ugahairydawgs View Post
An A player? He was a guy that refused to accept any blame for the half assed maps app they released and was, by all accounts, terrible to work with.
From what we've read, Steve Jobs was also terrible to work with. But the guy knew where he was going and he was the boss.

Trying to push the blame for bad data on a programmer like Scott Forstall is just insane. The guy seemed to know his stuff, the only problem was his leadership, as far as we know. Just pushing him back to a lower position could have been enough. Maps was rushed to remove Google Maps from iOS, too.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ugahairydawgs View Post
Not sure why users of a company's products become such micro-analyzers of corporate hiring activity.
You're not sure why we're discussing things that could affect everyone? The last thing I want to see is Apple trying to push crap like Java and Flash back onto the Web.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 09:48 AM   #25
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Using the Jobs Bozo Theorem. If this becomes Tim Cooks 2nd. failed hire I'm afraid Cook is starting to become a B player. Due to hiring two C players.

This is not a good thing. Apple needs an A player at the helm.
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