Sunday, March 13, 2011

Flash and business intelligence

I have heard quite a bit recently about the demise of Adobe Flash. In fact I recently had a discussion with some programmer who were decidedly of the opinion that the future belongs to HTML5.

Apple does not like Flash, and has managed to keep it off the iPhone and iPad. Steve Jobs also claims that Flash is the most common cause for crashes on Macs.

Microsoft is not as strongly opposed to Flash as Apple is, but Silverlight is certainly intended to compete with it, and Microsoft has also thrown in support for HTML5, as as Google.

But I certainly don't see any move by business intelligence companies to move away from Flash in their reporting tools. In fact IBM Cognos released Cognos 10 fairly recently with more support for Flash than in previous versions. I also notice that Information Builders has actually more towards Flash in its Active Reports, away from the original DHTML version. And MicroStrategy doesn't seem likely to move away from its popular Flash dashboards, even if its current interest in mobile business intelligence will means more support for Apple platform.

I think people tend to underestimate the role that momentum plays in the IT business. I can understand the arguments that the markets are moving away from Flash, but I wouldn't expect it to disappear overnight.


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