See, the bulk of Hachamovitch's post was devoted to explaining that H.264 will be the only video codec natively supported by IE9 -- and should be the codec of choice for HTML5. Both Silverlight and Flash already support H.264, but due to licensing restrictions (you can't embed a proprietary codec in a pure open source browser), Firefox cannot provide native support. In an HTML5 future where neither Flash nor Silverlight will be required to play embedded Web video, Firefox gets aced out.
Jobs' motives are less convoluted. His "most important" reason for shutting out Flash is that it's a "cross-platform development tool." Even more transparently: "The 200,000 apps on Apple's App Store prove that Flash isn't necessary for tens of thousands of developers to create graphically rich applications." In other words, he doesn't want the competition, and wrapping himself in the HTML5 flag is a great way to look "open" as he slams the door on Flash.
Don't get me wrong: I think HTML5 is the future, too (eventually). I also believe poorly written Flash applications are the scourge of the Web. But I've also seen plenty of useful Flash apps, and they seem to be getting better. What's wrong with giving users a choice?
If you haven't noticed, we're in a pitched battle for the future of the Web, from HTML5 video codecs to the faltering struggle to maintain Net neutrality. Every time you lock out an established technology, the more you increase the chances of a Balkanized, nightmarish Web future.
Jobs closes his argument with the assertion that cross-platform apps can never equal apps nestled safely in the App Store. Shouldn't users be the judge of that? Apple needs to do the right thing and open the door to Flash.
This article, "Stop bashing Flash," originally appeared at InfoWorld.com. Read more of Eric Knorr's Modernizing IT blog and get a digest of the key stories each day in the InfoWorld Daily newsletter and on your mobile device at infoworldmobile.com.