Adobe Drops Licensing Fees, Gives Away Flash For Devices | Compiler from Wired.com
Well, maybe Queen was overstating it a bit. It’s not even Savior of the Web3D just yet. But Adobe is making some very important moves this month. First was the news that Flash — the format — will be opened to anyone, royalty free. Adobe will make its money off the development tools, not servers and license fees. The code may or may not be opened as well. There was some talk of donating the JIT compiler code to the Mozilla foundation.
Second, they’ve put out a pre-release version of Flash 10, which contains native 3D rendering. Download and try out the demos.
What this means is that companies who already put their eggs in the Flash basket for delivering 3D to the web have been fairly well vindicated, vs. the ones that painfully went with their own proprietary ActiveX controls and whatnot.
Will Flash 10 be as fast as compiled C++ code? Not a chance. But for pushing lots of polygons, it won’t matter as much anymore, as long as we can send big vertex arrays in one call (let’s not ask about physics and simulation though) — the card does all the work. I’ll be curious to see if they allow shaders and therefore GPGPU code, but that’s a side point right now.
The key thing is, if you want to deliver a 3D app to the most number of customers without a new download and install, Flash is certainly an attractive option, especially compared to Java and Silverlight. If it becomes part of the browser, as I expect in the next few years, even more so.