Form Function Class 2012 - From Flash to HTML5

Published on November 12, 2012

I recently did a one hour talk in University of Santo Tomas for the Philippine Web Designer’s Organization’s annual Form Function Class conference. Most of it was about how I transitioned from Flash to HTML5, the libraries I used and the techniques I’ve contrived to develop my HTML5-based game. From Flash to HTML5 by James Florentino

You can view the slides here1.

For a quick overview of the libraries and design patterns in this talk:

  • CreateJS Suite (Easel, Sound, Preload, Tween, Zoe)
  • RequireJS
  • AMD (Asynchronus Module Definition) pattern
  • Entity/Component system for JavaScript game development
  • Preparing sprite sheets from Flash’s IDE to Zoe to Easel

Thoughts

Looking back, I never thought that Flash would become unnecessary that soon. It was only 2010 when the late Steve Jobs posted his ”Thoughts on Flash” article. I was still a hardcore Flash Developer back then and wasn’t really sold on HTML5/CSS3.

Two and a half years later, here I am spreading the gospel.

The decline of Flash in mobile

I remember when people thought that Apple’s dictatorial move on not allowing the Flash Player plugin to run on its mobile platform prevents the consumer from accessing the “full web” experience. When it was implemented in Android, the users neither got what they were promised. Sites that use Flash became unusuable or just didn’t work out at all for mobile.

Flash in Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

Back in June 2012, Adobe announced it would stop providing Flash Player implementations for Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. I think this is a sign of admitting defeat which I think will benefit Adobe in the end. It’s difficult to let one company single-handedly dictate the direction of one platform which probably explains why a lot of their recent products are open sourced. I think this is a good move on their part.

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” - Charles Darwin

In any case, I’m still amazed on how I can do most of the stuff I used to do in Flash now in HTML5/CSS3 natively. I think my future endeavor would be gaming in WebGL, once I learn how to make game assets in 3D 2. It’s going to be an interesting future!


  1. For anyone interested, the slideshow uses CSS3. It’s a JavaScript presentation library for web designers called impress.js that uses CSS3 3D transforms

  2. I do most of the art, design and programming work myself for personal projects. It is mainly for academic/pedagogical purposes