SXSW Interactive Flash – The F Bomb Or Da Bomb

Today I went to a presentation featuring Aubrey Gross, David Greene, Kristine Schachinger, and Phillip Gross entitled “Flash: The F Bomb or Da Bomb?”. I liked the title and I know everyone is buzzing around wondering “What’s going to happen with Flash?”, so I checked it out and ended up learning something things that I didn’t know. During the session the panel mainly talked about the use of Flash and accessibility. They also touched on the future of Flash, well rather if there is a future for Flash.

Flash – F Bomb or Da Bomb?

Flash – F Bomb or Da Bomb? – Session Panel

In the discussion, they started off talking about how Flash isn’t easily accessible for anyone who needs the aid of a screen reader and also that Google can’t see flash. For example, if you have a website made completely of Flash, no matter if it’s 10 pages or 100 pages Google will see your website as 1 page, which is pretty bad from an SEO standpoint. The panel did add though that Flash is great to use as visual enhancement, but it’s not ideal or smart to build whole websites using Flash. It should be placed within the website strategically.

Then we they started to touch on why businesses need to or should think about and care about accessibility. Implementing accessibility into your code not only helps everyone be able to use your site but it’s also a smart business decision.  Accessibility opens to the door to:

Reach a bigger audience. You open yourself up to a whole different market of people who no one else is marketing to Accessibility means that your website pretty much has a universal design, which makes your website do better in search engines – Google LOVES accessibility! Will work on every device Makes it easy to change designs in and out Makes your site easier to maintain One thing that really surprised me is that a lot of businesses that want websites built don’t even care to think about accessibility and if they do it’s after the website has been completed.

Next we moved on to discussing the future of Flash. In recent time, I’ve heard that Flash is going to completely die, but apparently that might not be the case. Flash is a utility tool that is so vast that there is nothing to replace it … yet. Flash is becoming useful in a lot of other areas though. So it’s not necessarily dying but rather being reborn.

I’m interested to see what will happen to Flash and if accessibility will become more common with big companies that now think that accessibility is not something they should care about or even small companies that don’t think about it. I really enjoyed the session. I thought it was insightful and very informative

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