Don Burnside

Recipes, technology, personal stuff and a crap load of archives.

No Flash for Me

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About an hour before recording the latest episode of White Roof Radio, I was trying to get everything setup and in place to do a live-to-the-internet show. I’ve done it before without any issues, so I thought I’d start early and get listeners lined up before everything started.

Open up uStream.tv. Get logged in and select the channel I’m going to use for the live show. I’m then prompted for the Flash Security stuff. And that’s as far as I got. The browser didn’t crash, but at the same time, it didn’t do anything. I tried multiple times without success. So I tried again in Firefox.

Oh yea, right. Lion doesn’t come with Flash. And the uStream broadcast thing only works with Flash for how I needed to use it. Next step to most would have been to shuffle off to Adobe.com and get Flash for OSX Lion.

I did not.

Chrome has it’s own, built in intepreter for Flash that seems to work perfectly fine on almost everything I need. Considering that I have gone almost 2 weeks before I realized I didn’t have Flash installed, I’d say it’s hit that mark.

I’m going to try to go as long as possible. I think I can go forever without having to install Flash on my Mac. Since the Chrome version appears to work ok, no need to clutter up my system with rubbish Adobe Software, right? I don’t like or need Flash. But for when I do, I’ll use Chrome, even if I break up with it like I mentioned above. But that’s for another post.

It’s Time We Nerds Help

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Just through the course of a day I end up on some photographers website. Invaribly it’s something hosted by photobiz.com or wix, all done in flash with copy-righted background music playing and a crappy looking WordPress blog hanging off the side like dirty dish rag hanging out of the kitchen window. I keep asking why, but never get answers that I find acceptable.

Until I asked Stella the same question. Being the photographer of the house, I thought she would have good insight into the reasoning behind photographers having such horrible websites. Our conversation went a little something like this.

  • dbwilldo: why do photographers have such yucky websites?
  • Stella:because they are not nerds

Could it really be that easy? A person that has the ability to charge thousands of dollars for their services that they perform with (possibly) tens of thousands of dollars worth of **very** complicated electronic components just aren’t nerdy enough?

That must be it. I think the problem that we as nerds run into is in our thought patterns. Photographers _aren’t nerds_. Photographers are _creatives_, that just so happen to do their creating with digital equipement. A fact, I think, fools the rest of us into thinking that photographers know the same things that we do.

Which they don’t.

They just want a website that displays their portfolio and other information in a pleasing manner, just like everyone else. Sites like photobiz and wix have capitalized on this, targeted photography professionals with words like ‘easy to use’, ‘background music’, ‘elegant’ and ‘comic sans’ to lure them in. So they get stuck.

Makes me wonder. Do they not try to open their websites on their iPhone/Android/Blackberry? Have they not tried to open their site using an iPad or Android tablet? If they have, do they just shrug their shoulders and say “Oh well. I’m not a nerd enough to make something better”?

Or do they see Flash as their security blanket? Thinking that if their photos are wrapped up in flash, they can’t be stolen and used in nefarious ways. Nerds know otherwise, don’t we?

Instead, I prefer to think that we, as nerds, have failed the professional photographers. Failed in that we haven’t shown them the way to nicely display their photos on any device, on any platform and with any browser. We have failed to guide them in best web practices. Failed to help them save money by avoiding services such as these.

As nerds, we owe it to our photography brethren to show them the right way. The way to display their photos in a pleasing way that is easy to use and keep their photos as safe. The way to share their work with iPhone/iPad/Android/Blackberry users. The way to save money by not having to pay the rediculous rates that the other guys charge. We owe them.