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View Poll Results: Flash-acceptable or not?

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  • Ohh, I love scaleable/cross-platform streaming Flash

    8 18.60%
  • Not too bad I suppose, if done well

    20 46.51%
  • Flash, pah... what a waste of bandwidth!

    15 34.88%
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  1. #26
    Grumpy Mole Man Skunk's Avatar
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    Re: oh my god

    Originally posted by DevilBear
    I don't care how quickly it downloads if it makes me wait while it animates everything into existence. What was the point of mainstreaming broadband access if web designers are just going to make you sit there anyway?
    I couldn't agree more - that's what winds me up most about Flash. I don't WANT to wait for your animation to transition between one page and another (no matter how jaw droppingly gorgeous it may look) - I want to read your information and possibly copy / paste / bookmark it.

    To the guy who started this thread: Please don't take this personally, but your site is a great demonstration of the reasons I dislike Flash. Yes it loads fast, but I have to sit through a lengthy, boring (but quite pretty) intro sequence and then sit through even more dull animations whenever I go to view a new page. As a graphic designer I'll admit it does make sense to use that kind of "impressive" presentation for your site / portfolio but personally I feel put off by it and would be unlikely to bookmark or re-visit the site.

    Flash has it's place - but as far as I'm concerned that place is amusing cartoons involving monkees. That said, I have been experimenting with Flash 5 recently and the XML socket stuff seems like a useful way of implementing "live" information (such as a Chat room / stock ticker / that kind of thing).

  2. #27
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    Putting Flash intro's aside for a minute the only thought thru gripes about Flash sites so far has been pointless animation, slow loading pages and not able to bookmark or copy and paste out content all of which can be added (or removed) to a well designed Flash site - in other words its dependant on the developer and not the technology.

    As far as intro's goes there main purpose in life (apart from p***ing off non Flash developers ;-) is to kill the viewers time as the main site / movie loads - so you may have to play a game of pong while your waiting for a 200k complete site (or the front section) to load. A savvy designer will add a cookie or some such function to the skip /dont view again button so visitors wont have to view the intro again (unless they want to).

    Originally posted by M. Johansson

    However, people (99.5% of them, anyway) don't come to your site to be impressed - they want content. They don't want to remember your design. They want to remember your content. People don't want the text to fade in and say "bweep".

    People just want to read the goddamm text.
    Hi Mattias, I'd love to know were you got that figure from.
    Last edited by Chas; Feb 3, 2002 at 22:27.

  3. #28
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    While I don't know about 99.5% recent statistics have born out the theory that people just don't care about the fancy stuff. This article that came out last September caused a stir, but wasn't a surprise to everyone:
    http://cyberatlas.internet.com/big_p...881121,00.html

  4. #29
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy
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    I think some flash is okay, but don't like all-flash sites. I've seen sites with elements of flash... navigation, segments of the layout. Small portions of flash look good and download fast. However, large all-flash sites are nothing but bandwidth hogs and cause many more problems than they're worth.

  5. #30
    Wanna-be Apple nut silver trophy M. Johansson's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Chas
    However, people (99.5% of them, anyway) don't come to your site to be impressed - they want content.
    Hi Mattias, I'd love to know were you got that figure from.
    Seems like common sense - if you have content, people that visit your site are likely to be looking for it. Is that so unreasonable?

    Your intro-preloader argument is correct, but any site that needs a preloader is too big to begin with, since A LOT of visitors doesn't wait for the loading to complete.

    This is a great thread. Anyway, gotta go now.
    Mattias Johansson
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  6. #31
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    if you have content, people that visit your site are likely to be looking for it.
    What is a dry sense of humor anyways?

    I still dont think you can group all full Flash sites in the same way and say that it only works with limited types of content.

    Take this site for example:

    http://www.mtv2.co.uk/

    This style of UI could work for almost any type of site (although its been designed to match MTV2's branding) and anyone visiting will not only remember the quality of the content but the fact that it had a unique style and wasn't like 99% of sites out there.

  7. #32
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    Uh..no, it couldn't work for most any kind of site, IMHO. It launched a full screen window..bad, bad, bad. Then, afer having to launch it, it has an intro..why? Then there's pointless animation for a while. Even after skipping intro and on a T3 line it's taking a long time to load. Now I'm clicking the text links..oh, wait..they're being tricky..silly me..those aren't the links..you have to click these layer type things. Now I clicked one and it's saying "loading, loading, loading". Page has loaded and now it's time to figure out what are the links here. Chas, anyone with anything to do would be off this site and somewhere else long before getting this far. This stuff is for the few people in the world with lots of time to kill, not to mention infinite patience.
    Last edited by psalzer; Feb 4, 2002 at 12:04.

  8. #33
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    Ok fare point, i tell you what, when i find some full Flash sites that make my point ill post em on theSP Director, Flash and Actionscript Forum

  9. #34
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    Question Flash or no Flash??

    To me flash depends on the client. If they want a website that gets right into content, forget flash. However, if they want a nice, eye-catching site, flash is always a good thing.

    Rumple

    www.multisoftonline.com

  10. #35
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    Question The Real Point of Flash Is??

    Like the rest of you I skip the fancy flash intros every time, considering that I'm on a deep-in-the-redwoods 26,000 baud dial-up, they are a real waste of my time. However isn't the beauty of Flash the fact that it renders colors and fonts on the fly from vector co-orindinates, thereby bypassing two web/browser restaints to good design?

    Pernel
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  11. #36
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    Re: The Real Point of Flash Is??

    Originally posted by rubygro
    However isn't the beauty of Flash the fact that it renders colors and fonts on the fly from vector co-orindinates, thereby bypassing two web/browser restaints to good design?
    Exactly, although a lot of what you can do in Flash can be achieved by DHTML & Javascript (except transparencies) there's never any cross browser / platform issues with Flash like JS and DHTML

  12. #37
    SitePoint Wizard iTec's Avatar
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    Re: Re: The Real Point of Flash Is??

    Originally posted by Chas
    Exactly, although a lot of what you can do in Flash can be achieved by DHTML & Javascript (except transparencies) there's never any cross browser / platform issues with Flash like JS and DHTML
    Ahhh but what if they dont have flash installed? it is after all a plug-in.. then they are left with nothing.

  13. #38
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    Ahhh but what if they dont have flash installed?
    Thats when the friendly plug-in sniffer comes in handy

  14. #39
    Former Staff Member silver trophy Adam P.'s Avatar
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    I feel that Flash is at its best when integrated with an HTML page, somewhat like www.phong.com has done.
    SPF Mentor/Advisor 2001-2003
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  15. #40
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    a flash intro on a business site is most of the time useless. flash is an enhancement and not a medium that should be pushed on the user.
    flash that is used like a utility to show or sell a product makes more sense.
    I knew some guys that worked at a company that only did flash sites, they are looking for work somewhere else now, they insisted on pushing the envelope of design instead of making an effective websites. flash is a great enhancement, but it wont replace html like i even once thought. even after the band width increases i dont see all flash sites as being the norm. i do think that flash programmer/designer jobs will be in demand for a while.
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  16. #41
    busy Steelsun's Avatar
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    To me, Flash is an extra, not the whole thing. A site totally flash driven, or even mostly flash driven is a draw back.

    Flash used as an element to a page design is much better and has a good place in the web world.

    I am not a flash guru, but I can do enough to get buy. In fact I was hired by one client (who I had done html work for and some graphics in the past) to make an animated 'flow chart' object for their webpages. They had previously hired someone that did a lame version as an animated gif. I gave them a swf that was about 1/4 the size of the gif, and looked alot better (less pixelization), with smotther and more appropriate animation. (I did talk them out of adding sound and music to it).

    Overall, if I visit a site that is mostly flash, I quickly leave (even when surfing with a high bandwidth connection) unless I am just wasting time for entertainment purposes.
    Brian Poirier
    SunStockPhoto: Stock Photos, Fine Art Photos, Event Photography

  17. #42
    Typo Negative brokenvoice's Avatar
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    I'm surprised at the arbitrary division I've seen made here between Flash and content. What if Flash is your content? What if you don't work with text as a medium? What makes Flash less acceptable than images? The arguments I've seen here are repeats of the ones made when the <img> tag was introduced by Netscape. Images were a huge waste of bandwidth when you had a 9600 baud modem (14400 if you were really lucky.)

    Thank god for sites like PrayStation , Eric Natzke's and Presstube. And thank god for sites like Textism and Kottke too.

    I'd rather see some well designed Flash than to have my eyes assaulted by cookie-cutter site designs made up of poor typography and uninspired graphics.

    The web isn't just about text and it isn't just about Flash. For a short, happy time it was about freedom creativity and we should remember that before we go around saying that some technology has no place on the web.

  18. #43
    pg for mild peril cow's Avatar
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    as others have said, i think flash is a good tool when used properly. i ran across a website a while back that charged people to use their flash templates to make cookie-cutter flash websites. the websites looked like they were created in five minutes and the designs reminded me of powerpoint days of yesteryear. the resulting websites didn't have a text-only option and all their content was encapsulated in a full-screen flash movie.

    as steelsun said, flash should be viewed as an enhancement...kinda like jpg or gif files. flash should lend support to your html content, not replace it.

    of course flash's usage depends greatly on the purpose of the site. it your content is the animation or movies contained in your flash, then clearly you've gotta use it

    btw, i voted for the middle one...
    "There's no justice like angry mob justice!" --Seymour Skinner

  19. #44
    Grumpy Mole Man Skunk's Avatar
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    Urk! I'm bookmarking www.mtv2.co.uk as a tool to use whenever I want to convince people NOT to do sites all in Flash Full screen window, weird navigation, wating times all over the place for intros / transition animation / new sections loading... weird noises playing for no apparent reason. In fact I think that one site embodies pretty much everything I dislike about Flash

  20. #45
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    That's what I'm saying, skunk. You know..one thing that the designers of these sites don't always take into consideration is that people who are seriously looking at them for one reason or another might need to be looking at a number of sites in one session. I first started to have a serious attitude problem about Flash when I got an assignment to research advertising networks and agencies on the web. It was time sensitive and a whole bunch of sites had a acquired Flash intros and navigation. By the time I was finished I was pretty livid about the time that was I had to waste waiting for the cute stuff to be finished so I could get the information I needed. Needless to say the sites with the most barriers to that information didn't get included in the report, which meant they didn't get a shot at the business my company was considering doing with someone. That mtv site might be appropriate for its audience, but I'll bet it wouldn't lose even one visitor if it let you get to the real content faster and it would probably keep more on the site and even more coming back.

  21. #46
    Photoshop Ninja jonnya's Avatar
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    Originally posted by psalzer
    That's what I'm saying, skunk. You know..one thing that the designers of these sites don't always take into consideration is that people who are seriously looking at them for one reason or another might need to be looking at a number of sites in one session. I first started to have a serious attitude problem about Flash when I got an assignment to research advertising networks and agencies on the web. It was time sensitive and a whole bunch of sites had a acquired Flash intros and navigation. By the time I was finished I was pretty livid about the time that was I had to waste waiting for the cute stuff to be finished so I could get the information I needed. Needless to say the sites with the most barriers to that information didn't get included in the report, which meant they didn't get a shot at the business my company was considering doing with someone. That mtv site might be appropriate for its audience, but I'll bet it wouldn't lose even one visitor if it let you get to the real content faster and it would probably keep more on the site and even more coming back.

    ...and u skunk!

    I have to say that this is a bit harsh, I do know what you mean about the 'cute stuff', but how can you compare a franky flakey reliance on tables, dodgy rollover images, and other so called 'cross-platform if you are using the right browser' pages-to a truey cross-platform (ok, if you have the correct plugin etcetcetc... but is about 60 seconds really gonna hurt to download it... we are talking market penetration on more than just computers for Flash plugin...this really is cross-platform!!)

    Ahhh, it's an already old argument, I think I maybe should have put a couple of other options in the poll!! All interesting though, just wanted to test the general opinion on Flash content really... wonder what this poll would be like in 18 months when the Flash 6 beta player is in full swing (whoopie!!)
    Jonnya Freelance Creative
    UK Freelance designer and web developer
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  22. #47
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    I really don't think it's harsh. I was really angry that day..under time pressure at work and I wanted facts and too often couldn't get at them without a long wait. I've rarely seen a rollover that stopped me from getting to content, although it's possible, I suppose. Personally, I prefer text links most of the time. I also need to go to music sites fairly often, for business reasons - you can imagine what a treat that is when you have to visit several in a row. I don't think it's all that surprising that I've become a bit Flashphobic. Flash really can work well, but I honestly don't think that Flash intros should ever be used..ever..never..ever.. and navigation should always be clear and unambiguous and it should stay in one place!!!!! After being subjected to probably 20 Flash sites that are designed to confuse for every one that is clear and simple to use, aggravation sets in.

  23. #48
    Photoshop Ninja jonnya's Avatar
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    I totally sympathise, and understand what you mean... I can imagine waiting for a looping loader for the thousandth time while the indulgencies of a designer load in in the background... I'm not being sarcastic eather!!

    However, look at my site, the animation goes a bit slow on low processor computers, but the whole base interface is only 42k ish...not too bad!! The interface is also pretty easy to navigate...opinions?? This actually got slated in the site reviews for having a too loing loader (not as familiar with Flash intros as you are psalzer!!). I'm not finished on this site yet, and I think it's just the complexity of the animation at certain stages that 'slows' the sites frame rate down rather than the load time. No 2 minute loader here though...just efficient usage of loading Flash movies on layers!!

    http://www.jonnya.net
    Jonnya Freelance Creative
    UK Freelance designer and web developer
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  24. #49
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    I've seen your site and it's way better than most I've seen in terms of load time and clarity of navigation. To get into details would be more appropriate for the review thread, and since I do have a slight attitude problem about Flash I usually abstain when it comes to reviewing all Flash sites. I think it's probably all right to say that I think that there should always be an HTML alternative for business sites, if only because people might want to copy and paste your information.


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