flash for my website (photography)?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by HBOC, May 4, 2010.

  1. HBOC macrumors 68020

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    #1
    So I am wondering if using Flash would be a good idea for a website i am going to be putting together for myself. I know flash looks better in general (more professional perhaps), but is it really a good idea? I know that it can be slow, and people don't want to wait for images to load; click and go, ya know?

    Any advice would be appreciated. I was thinking of getting web hosting from powweb.com and purchasing a flash template from templatemonster.com.

    If I find that flash may not be that great an idea, i have a website that i have been working on for a while that i could use.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #2
    In my opinion most of what can be done in flash can be done outside of flash. I would not use flash myself these days.
     
  3. HBOC thread starter macrumors 68020

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    #3
    Thanks for the help. I like the look of flash, but the irony is that I was on a photographers' SmugMug account and i got a message stating the flash plug-in unexpectedly stop working. That got me thinking.

    Now back to the drawing board, literally :) .
     
  4. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

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    #4
    Here's the scoop on Flash from a developer's perspective...

    Flash should never be relied on as the only visual medium on the site as it is not supported on all platforms and is often blocked by corporate and personal firewalls. This means, as jessica wisely suggested, you should always provide an HTML alternative bearing in mind Flash does not corner the market as to high quality graphics and rich web 2.0 content. Flash is not compatible with accessibility features in browsers and by W3C standards. As a plugin is required, this may inconvenience those users who do not support it by default and are prompted to download, not to mention many office LAN's prevent users from installing software of this type on workstations. Meanwhile, a quality web designer with few HTML skills can create photo gallery oriented sites that are both usable, cross browser compatible and fully accessible using many IDE's and content management systems in place today with open source third party modules and frameworks to help them.

    HTML5 or whatever the W3C ends up doing as the next incarnation of HTML and CSS will, in the future, make embedding objects and media far easier than it ever was in the past. Even Flash used for progressive streaming of videos in the "You Tube" way will likely erode in favor to developers over time.

    Combine this with the fact many PDA's and mobile web platforms don't support Flash right now, so you're losing a valuable demographic of users right there.

    The general advice these days is not to "rely" on it and avoid splash screens that utilize Flash. Use it for complimentary add-ons but also provide an HTML alternative, i.e. create a nice slideshow option in Flash format but for people with Flash plugin missing display a nice HTML version that uses, say, MooTools or LightBox or one of the many other DHTML open source frameworks to extend a PHP based/database driven gallery as well.

    My .02

    -jim
     
  5. ChicoWeb macrumors 65816

    ChicoWeb

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    #5
    Flash is going away, sorry. I'd look into jquery as there are lots of alternatives to flash that will work on all different platforms.
     
  6. smetvid macrumors 6502

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    Nov 1, 2009
    #6
    People that hate Flash are only giving you their opinion. You might be better off doing some research on your own and not asking in a forum. Forums tend to be overly opinionated with people spewing out their opinions as if it is a fact.

    Flash is in wide use and not just for youtube video. I see more demand for Flash designers and developers then any other form of media out there so it must be used somewhere. Just because something isn't used by one group of people doesn't mean it isn't used at all.

    I'm not saying Flash is your best choice for your website or if you should even use it. All I am saying is that I don't think you will get a fair answer on this forum. MacRumors tends to be weighed more on the side that Flash sucks. It really is political at the end of the day and has very little to do this technology.

    Me personally as a web designer I embrace all forms of expressive technology whether it is Flash or HTML5.

    As to Flash not widely supported I'm not sure I agree with that. Sure maybe when it comes to mobile devices but Flash is supported under PC, Mac or Linux. I highly doubt award winning design firms and advertising agencies would use it if it was really that bad. Flash websites win awards every year and that must count for something. These people could use the alternative technologies that are "just as good" as Flash but yet they do not.

    Again I'm not saying Flash is the answer to your question but it isn't as bad as many people here will tell you it is. Do your research on forums more dedicated to web design and creativity and not news forums and forums designed for one specific platform. For example Mac forums, Adobe forums are all going to give you very biased answers. Go to a Adobe Flash forum and they will tell you it is the greatest thing since sliced bread.
     
  7. samwise macrumors regular

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    #7
    About one of the few things you can guarantee is that the 50 million+ iPhones and 20 million+ iPod Touch units sold, along with the 1 million iPads sold will not be able to see your site if it is purely Flash.

    Flash has its place, but you should always have a non-flash option on a website.
     
  8. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

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    #8
    And we're entitled to those opinions, and people aren't as clueless as you think they are - this is a PHP based developer and designer related forum so naturally the opinions expressed here will be of that context. ALL forums are overly opinionated but the same would be true in a conference room, a bunch of stools in a bar, or between close friends. However, many of the opinions posed are based on solid, professional experience by people who work with real clients and follow real standards. Thus, nobody should summarily dismiss those type of facts simply because this is an Internet forum. Also, the first instance of the word "hate" was yours - so the use of that word was too strong and completely out of place with the tone of comments prior to your reply. Maybe retract your claws a bit and give some of us credit - many of us have been around the block a few times and knows some stuff. Some also disclaimed their comments as being their opinion, and from the context in which said comments were derived, so your comments in particular to this thread are beyond insensitive.

    But you're entitled to your opinion also, just maybe try a little less hard next time, that's my opinion.

    -jim
     
  9. mono1980 macrumors 6502

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    Lansing, MI
    #9
    If you want your beautiful photography viewed on an iPhone, iPod or iPad, avoid Flash at all costs. The focus should be on your photography anyway, not on anything "Flashy".
     
  10. 7on macrumors 601

    7on

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    #10
    I worry more that he's equating design to a program. I did a slideshow for a client who insisted that it be done in Flash. I wrote him what he wanted in Javascript (using jQuery) and he still referes to it as "that flash" whenever he wants changes made (and now that it's all html and js, changes are easily rolled out).
     
  11. dmr727 macrumors G3

    dmr727

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    #11
    Use Flash if you want to embed a game, highly interactive content, or perhaps some 2D animated flourishes. It definitely has its uses. But I should also be able to view and navigate all the essential content of the site without it.
     
  12. thecheda macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Jquery

    I suggest Jquery or Prototype. Quick and easy.
     
  13. X1Lightning macrumors 6502

    X1Lightning

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    Feb 19, 2007
    #13

    these are not bullet proof across browsers, i have run in to issues where some jquery or dojo widget works flawless on most browsers, then try it in IE and it blows up or runs terribly

    The nice thing with flash, is the plugin renders the scripting the same no matter what browser its on. you are not at the mercy of Microsoft lagging on a feature in there browser, that every other modern browser has
     
  14. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

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    #14
    Take a moment to ponder that statement. How true is it? ;)

    There are different versions of the engine and some Flash developers don't do a good job handling that. There are different releases of Action Scripting, same scenario. And some Flash designers do not handle screen resolution adaptations very well.

    Hey, don't get me wrong. All the same basic kind of issues exist in the non-Flash world, of course. I don't disagree that in most Flash sites the rendering is the same, I'll even spot you that I've seen a statistic that 96% of all browsers support the plugin. Of those, 95% is up to date. However, I don't feel its worthy of a blanket statement which is how I interpret what you said. And, without question, the skill of the developer in any project using any tool is a key part to rendering sites better across platforms.

    My point being that any proprietary platform is subject to these issues. I am stating this as my opinion, but based on stone cold facts. Not just conjecture and experience.

    -jim
     
  15. X1Lightning macrumors 6502

    X1Lightning

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    #15
    I can agree with what you are pointing out, but what i should have said is in my experience flash/flex has worked out better if you want the site to look and work the same across platforms. IE has so many quirks to it that you just don't have to worry about if the site is based in flash/flex.

    The script libraries(dojo jQuery YUI) are getting there, but i still run into problems with something not working right on one browser yet working fine on the rest.

    If we could just get the world to stop using IE i could totally agree with walking away from flash :)
     
  16. Lithium. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    #16
    You could always have a photography wordpress theme.

    I've used a few of these in the past and they're great. Flash really limits your audience.

    Here's some awesome themes you could use:

    ThemeForest
     
  17. 7on macrumors 601

    7on

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    #17
    Then don't use the widget, right it yourself! :p

    With Flash, what if someone is running the Flash 7 plugin? Or on Linux with Gnash? Will they see the same content?

    Just because shoddy programmers vomit up horribly coded widgets doesn't mean all Jquery is bad. For instance, you can use it with selectors to make a lot of psuedo classes that don't work in IE, work in IE. Works great with navs where the last item needs to forgo a border-right.
     
  18. angelneo macrumors 68000

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    #18
    I have say it before, swf format is an open format which you can develop for. The file specification is here http://www.adobe.com/devnet/swf/. There have been third party software that generate swf format eons ago.
     
  19. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

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    #19
    I didn't mention SWF, nor did I say any formats can't be developed. You quoted a sentence of mine that has nothing to do with your response, from my understanding. HUH?!!! :p
     
  20. angelneo macrumors 68000

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    #20
    You implied that Flash is a proprietary system as your statement is a direct response to Flash plugin
     
  21. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

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    #21
    Absiolutely. I did more than imply, too. :)

    "Proprietary" in the sense the core code comes from one vendor, this doesn't imply there isn't an SDK or language/command construct available to developers in either paid or open source format. But what I was really getting at is that the issues it [Flash] faces, are the same as with *any* kind of proprietary system [key point], as found in paragraph two of reply #14, even if we disagree on the definition or class of software involved. Thanks for stating your opinion but I'm not gonna spend time debating such minor points as what proprietary means - this topic is mostly about Flash viability in the market place and my comments in reply #14 is the part I hope you take to heart. No offense! :) :) :)
     

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