Popup Flash Errors are Dumb

Today we are scheduled to watch a live streaming webcast from Lightwave. This will be partly to view a live demo of the new features in Lightwave Live 9.6, but it will also partly be to see how another company executes a live webcast.

Not too long ago we took part in our own live streaming webcast. It featured a chat in addition to the streaming video and would be viewed by thousands of people at once. This giant influx of people required us to use an outside service since our own servers would not be able to handle that load. In the end, it was this switch that caused a few bumps in the road when we had the live webcast and it was nothing we could have seen with only 20 people to test with. We have since found what the problem was and know the costly solution. It was basically a matter of needing a dedicated server as opposed to shared.

So later today we will view a webcast and hopefully it will work. I am not entirely sure it will since I went to the web page just to check it out beforehand and I had some pop-up flash errors appear. While these errors may not be something that breaks the application, it does show that the application was not fully debugged, or maybe not tested on numerous computers. Ever since Actionscript 3 and Flash Player 10 have come out, the errors from your flash programming will show up when someone is viewing the site if they aren’t handled in the code correctly. I find this to be incredibly annoying for both programmers and users since in many cases the error doesn’t affect the application. It may say something like it can’t find the flv on the server. I think the video not showing up was enough to figure that out and I doubt anyone enjoys pop-ups more now than they did with advertisement pop-ups that were so prevalent in past years. These errors are something that the programmer can see when testing the flash application locally and if it still works properly, then there should be no need to have a pop-up when a user views it.

I think I have been more annoyed from a user’s point of view. Recently I have been going to sites that use flash and get these pop-up errors. After closing them everything still works fine, so why did I need to see it? I can’t do anything about it. It is the programmer’s problem and they can see these errors when testing locally already. If you’re not sporting Flash Player 10, you may never see these errors but you will most likely end up upgrading at some point. I think many site admins/programmers don’t haveFlash Player 10 or they would be fixing the errors that keep plaguing my Internet surfing.

These are probably the same people who are still using IE 6 though, so maybe they won’t be upgrading anytime soon.