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Death To Adobe Flash: The Fate Of Your eLearning

2020 is here and the final hours of Adobe Flash have come. By the end of the year, Flash will seize to exist and compatibility across the internet will be gone with it. In 2017, Adobe penned an open letter announcing the end of flash as a result of stronger, more viable alternatives available, such as HTML5. Dating back to 2010, Steve Job’s memo, Thoughts on Flash, identified incompatibility and poor security as 2 of the biggest reasons why Flash was a dying technology. Fast forward to 2020 and the time has come for Flash to end and HTML5 to rise.

Goodbye Flash, Hello HTML 5

HTML5 is a coding language and the latest evolution of the standard HTML. HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language and is used to describe web pages. It defines the meaning and structure of web content. The 5 after HTML represents the 5th iteration of the HTML standard. HTML5 includes a larger set of technologies, with more powerful websites and applications.

In essence, HTML5 allows us to create responsive content that can be used and read across platforms, such as your desktop and mobile device.

Is It Time For A Flash Overhaul?

According to a 2018 article from Training Journal, 75% of animation and video content found on the internet was reliant on Flash technology. Although this number has decreased, the percentage of content supported by Flash is one to take note of.

Using Flash on HTML5 supported platforms is like trying to play a cassette on an iPhone; it’s impossible. By the end of 2020, web browsers, including Microsoft and Google, will no longer enable flash. This means any flash content–courses, apps, etc.–that was built in or published as Flash will no longer work.

Converting courses to HTML5 can be a timely process, so it’s necessary to start now. Here’s how to begin:

  1. Determine if the conversion is for you:

    • If you’re learning content is animated and was created before 2016, it’s likely it was built with Flash.
    • If you’re unsure if your courses are using Flash, right-click within a specific course and check to see if a Flash icon () appears.
    • If you are still unsure, Learning Tribes can easily help you detect it!
  2. Once you realize you have Flash content, you need to convert it before it stops working. Here’s how:

    • Audit your content. If the content is current, keep it. If it’s not, trash it.
    • If you want to keep your content and you have the source file available, you can do an HTML5 conversion.
    • If you don’t have your source files, you have two choices:
      • Record a less interactive, MP4 video version
      • Completely recreate the content
  3. Converting to HTML5

    • Make sure you have ALL your source files
    • Use your LMS or authoring tools to convert your source files into HTML5. For example, Triboo, Articulate Storyline, or Adobe Captivate.

Note: A successful HTML5 conversion depends on the complexity of the Flash files and the connectivity with other elements in the platform.

  1. Create a new version

    • If you don’t have the source files or the HTML5 conversion is not functional, you will need to recreate and reconnect your files.

Don’t have time or expertise to execute these steps? Our developers would be happy to help you from the initial audit to conversion. Learn more:

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