Apple's Hiring of Kevin Lynch Questioned Amid Concerns Over His Staunch Defense of Flash

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Mar 20, 2013.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    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.
    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
  2. Tankmaze macrumors 68000


    Mar 7, 2012
    hopefully this is not gonna be browett part II.
  3. arcite macrumors 6502a


    Sep 6, 2009
    Cairo, trapped in a pyramid with my iphone
    Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer. This flash guru will have his uses for Apple.
  4. chrmjenkins macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2007
    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.
  5. Mic'sBook macrumors regular

    Feb 20, 2010
    Hong Kong
    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.)
  6. Rogifan macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2011
    Bring Scott back to do what? Take iOS backwards? Release another half baked product like maps and passbook?
  7. saintforlife macrumors 6502a

    Feb 25, 2011
    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...
  8. needfx, Mar 20, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2013

    needfx macrumors 68040


    Aug 10, 2010
    macrumors apparently
    he will be looking into bringing trhe Adobe Suite to iOS
  9. 0815 macrumors 68000


    Jul 9, 2010
    here and there but not over there
    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.
  10. uknowimright macrumors 6502a


    Dec 30, 2011
  11. ugahairydawgs macrumors 68020


    Jun 10, 2010
    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' 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.
  12. liavman macrumors 6502

    Sep 22, 2009
    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.
  13. Popeye206 macrumors 68040


    Sep 6, 2007
    I'm sure the paycheck and stock will help him loose his affection for Flash. :D
  14. japanime macrumors 68000


    Feb 27, 2006
    Gruber doesn't sound insightful; he sounds jealous.
  15. mono1980 macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2005
    Lansing, MI
    You could say that, except for the fact that Gruber is right at least 95% of the time...
  16. Mic'sBook macrumors regular

    Feb 20, 2010
    Hong Kong
    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.
  17. usersince86 macrumors 6502


    Oct 24, 2002
    Columbus, Ohio
    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.
  18. micros macrumors newbie

    Dec 3, 2012
    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.
  19. samcraig macrumors P6

    Jun 22, 2009
    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.
  20. nick_elt macrumors 68000


    Oct 28, 2011
    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.
  21. Kaibelf macrumors 68000


    Apr 29, 2009
    Chicago, IL
    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. ;)
  22. rorschach macrumors 68020


    Jul 27, 2003
    Seems to me someone who staunchly defends their company's products in public would be an asset.
  23. baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    Flash is not bad, it's just not for mobile devices (for some reason). Flash on computers is still unrivaled, just go to 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.
  24. Yvan256 macrumors 601

    Jul 5, 2004
    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.

    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.
  25. Peace macrumors P6


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    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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