A number of open source pantywaists are getting their knickers in a right sheepshank over the burgeoning alliance between champeen of open source code, Google (really? Tell me and the rest of the community out there, what’s the secret algorithm, then, Squirrel Boy?), and proprietary graphic media overlords Adobe (you know, they didn’t invent Flash, they only bought the company that invented the stuff). It’s no secret that there is going to be netbooks and tablets by Christmas which will support Flash running the Chrome OS and be out there competing and getting a fair share of what traditionally had been Windows (and Linux’s) share of the market. Part of the scuttlebutt about that fabled meeting between Dear Leader and Squirrel Boy on the coffee shop patio touched on how Google is going to be influencing Adobe on improving the code in Flash, perhaps finally making it open source, though I wouldn’t bet on Flash going GPL or LGPL, probably closer to MPL. Another part of the scuttlebutt is that Jobs wanted it confirmed by looking straight in Squirrel Boy’s face whether or not Google and Adobe has been feeling each other out for eventual merger. (You’d think the part of the reason Jobs is abandoning Adobe is because Google is embracing it ?) Say what you will about Squirrel Boy, though, the engineers at Google insist on writing tight elegant code that gets peer reviewed to death before it goes out into the wild. Adobe, Microsoft and even Apple, on the other hand, have been known to release unsecure code, either knowingly or unknowingly, until some white, black or gray hat hacker informs the community, the company involved or the rest of the world, forcing a quick (or not so quick) patch. If Google’s engineers get to fiddle underneath the hood of Adobe Flash, one of two things may happen: 1.) They’ll probably think, “What a load of crud!”, throw the whole thing out and insist on starting from scratch, or 2.) pare down and eliminate all the buggy and useless stuff and make Flash both speedy and secure. I’m betting on the first option, myself. A third unstated option may be, why not stick with HTML 5****, and work on making that work more smoothly, more quickly and more secure, and to hell with Flash, Silverlight, Pivot and JavaFX? If that option crops up, I’d blame the blind idealists within Google’s code monkey tribe. Part of what makes Google successful is that they used open source code from day one in their operation and are now the eighty ton King Kong in the free and open source world, paying for and dictating the direction of where a lot of that code should go and that’s okay for most developers (except for a few justified paranoid cases out there). Microsoft is failing because they own the code they roll out and want to make the whole world use and pay for that code through the nose and dictate how the users employ the code. Then they ditch or disable that code just enough that you have to buy an upgrade that does exactly the same thing. People are getting sick and tired of that, especially since the Redmond brand of code is really, really, really sloppy, is still buggy and gets in the users way. People buy into Apple’s stuff because it’s code looks cool and elegant and doesn’t get in anybody’s way when they wanna’ do something (most of the time). People don’t mind upgrading, in fact, line up for days in anticipation of the new stuff. Google’s stuff is simple and just works. And if there’s a problem or the stuff don’t fly, out it goes, on to the next project. Adobe’s stuff is slow, unwieldy and complicated. Now it needs a smart injection soon, especially if enough iPads take off to seriously influence how developers use video and graphics on the web. Who knows, if Google fixes Flash to the satisfaction of a certain man in Cupertino ….