Adobe Flash is a program that was used by many web developers to create animations, games, and images in websites. It’s an old program and has many problems related to security and efficiency. In fact, before he died, Steve Jobs went to war with Adobe in order to kill Flash. He finally, posthumously, succeeded. Earlier this year, Adobe announced that it would no longer support or make Flash in 2020.
This may seem like pretty arcane information and a long time in the future. While that’s true, there are tangible, immediate impacts for people at Prairie. The issue is that a lot of older websites still use Flash because they don’t want to pay a developer update their pages. These are typically educational game and video sites. Already, all of the major web browsers — Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and MS Edge — now block all Flash content by default.
The technology department gets frequent calls about certain websites not working due to Flash. While we can (and do) show people how to manually enable the Flash Player plugin, the day is coming soon when this will simply no longer work. I would not be surprised if all of the major browsers remove Flash support altogether in the next few months — which means sites that don’t remove and update their Flash content will no longer be accessible.
If you have websites that you use that employ Flash, about all you can do is attempt to contact the site’s owner and ask them to update their site by removing the Flash content. The other alternative is to find a new resource. I know these options are not very satisfying. As always, don’t hesitate to let me or any member of the technology team know if you have questions.