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Re: [Gnash] Adobe and Mozilla Foundation to Open ActionScript!

From: Rob Savoye
Subject: Re: [Gnash] Adobe and Mozilla Foundation to Open ActionScript!
Date: Wed, 08 Nov 2006 08:59:29 -0700
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20060913)

Tomas Groth wrote:

> Again, i'm not sure i agree... The MM/adobe flash player also had a VM, and
> still they included the new one as well, for which there must have been a good
> reason... Instead including tamarin, we could of course just link to it as a
> lib, if ever possible...

  Just because somebody makes an implementation decision, doesn't mean
it's the best way to do things. :-) My background leads me to believe
that this is unnecessary. As I haven't dug into the differences all the
heavily, I could be 100% wrong. My gut feeling is that using two VMs was
just the easiest way to do this. Based on what little I know about the
differences between v9 and v8, I think Gnash can handle both in the same
VM. The more I look through the Tamarin code, the less I think it's
suitable for Gnash. It's probably perfect for other Flash projects, I'd
love to see multiple free flash players, just like there are multiple
PDF and PS readers.

  While it might be possible to link in the Tamarin library and "just
use it", I think we'd find we'd have to redesign Gnash heavily to do
this. I prefer to use Tamarin to educate us on the differences between
AS3 and v9 opcodes, and then implement our own solution. I also have
some big changes in place for the Gnash VM that I think would be
impossible when using Tamarin. One of these is we plan to add support
for Gnash to have it's own plugins.

> As for your fear of gnash being to big for embedded devices with 2 VM's, they
> are IMHO unfounded, since flash for embedded devices IIRC doesn't support AS3,
> so there would be no need to include a new AS3 VM.

  As far as I can tell, Flash Lite 2.0 is a Flash v7 player. This player
I discovered is on the Nokia products, like the 770 and their smart
phones. Just because Adobe may not be using Flash 9 on embedded devices
is no reason Gnash shouldn't be able to do this. I think *users* would
like full compliance with whatever platform they are on.

  But yes, as I believe the true future for Gnash is on embedded
devices, we must always consider code size and execution speed for lower
end devices. Most desktop programmers pay no attention to these issues.

        - rob -

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