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posted by Fnord666 on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:07PM   Printer-friendly
from the not-sorry-to-see-you-go dept.

That's it. It's over. It's really over. From today, Adobe Flash Player no longer works. We're free. We can just leave:

The Photoshop giant promised Flash would die on January 12, 2021. Thanks to the International Date Line, The Register's Asia-Pacific bureau, like other parts of the world, are already living in a sweet, sweet post-Flash future, and can report that if you try to access content in Adobe's Flash Player in this cyber-utopia, you'll see the following:

[...] Adobe's page also explains why you'll see the Flash Death Notice depicted above, rather than Flash content:

Since Adobe is no longer supporting Flash Player after the EOL Date, Adobe will block Flash content from running in Flash Player beginning January 12, 2021 to help secure users' systems. Flash Player may remain on the user's system unless the user uninstalls it.

More specifically, what's happened is that Adobe snuck a logic bomb into its Flash software some releases ago that activates on January 12, and causes the code to refuse to render any more content from that date. Adobe has also removed previous versions from its site, and "strongly recommends all users immediately uninstall Flash Player to help protect their systems."

[...] Thus ends Flash, which started life in 1993 as a vector drawing product named SmartSketch, from long-dead company FutureWave Software. FutureWave turned SmartSketch into an animation tool called FutureSplash Animator. FutureWave was acquired by Macromedia in 1996, occasioning a name change to Macromedia Flash 1.0.


Original Submission

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Ethical AI art generation? Adobe Firefly may be the answer. 13 comments

https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2023/03/ethical-ai-art-generation-adobe-firefly-may-be-the-answer/

On Tuesday, Adobe unveiled Firefly, its new AI image synthesis generator. Unlike other AI art models such as Stable Diffusion and DALL-E, Adobe says its Firefly engine, which can generate new images from text descriptions, has been trained solely on legal and ethical sources, making its output clear for use by commercial artists. It will be integrated directly into Creative Cloud, but for now, it is only available as a beta.

Since the mainstream debut of image synthesis models last year, the field has been fraught with issues around ethics and copyright. For example, the AI art generator called Stable Diffusion gained its ability to generate images from text descriptions after researchers trained an AI model to analyze hundreds of millions of images scraped from the Internet. Many (probably most) of those images were copyrighted and obtained without the consent of their rights holders, which led to lawsuits and protests from artists.

Related:
Paper: Stable Diffusion "Memorizes" Some Images, Sparking Privacy Concerns
90% of Online Content Could be 'Generated by AI by 2025,' Expert Says
Getty Images Targets AI Firm For 'Copying' Photos
Adobe Stock Begins Selling AI-Generated Artwork
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Original Submission

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:35PM (15 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:35PM (#1098971)

    This is the lowest of the low. This is the sort of software misbehavior we should all be discouraging.

    Today it's in a relatively hackable but insecure web plugin... tomorrow it will be in something that has us by the balls.

    As it is I am sure there are flash gamers and other people who need the flash plugin for something critical which they don't have a choice about. For those people they now don't have the choice of forcing flash on for that one insecure thing they need, but instead are at the mercy of either open source to find a way, crackers to 'fix' the plugin, or that someone magnanimous will fix their app to work on another platform.

    Watch the trends though. Microsoft did this for years in their betas, but soon you will see it even in your operating system and then your very hardware, if we don't nip this behavior in the bud.

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Runaway1956 on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:39PM (1 child)

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:39PM (#1098976) Journal

      tomorrow it will be in something that has us by the balls.

      You slept through that whole "Upgrade to Windows 10" thing, didn't you? There had to be tens of thousands of people who declined the upgrade, but had the upgrade force-fed to their machines. Likely hundreds of thousands, and possibly millions.

      It happened to my wife, despite all my effort to avoid the upgrade. We had to reinstall Win7 to make things work like she wanted them to.

      • (Score: 5, Funny) by DannyB on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:10PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:10PM (#1099108) Journal

        Dear User! Welcome to your Windows 10 Upgrade!!!

        Would you like to Upgrade to Windows 10?

        [x] Yes
        [_] No

        [___OK___] [___Cancel___]

        In order to upgrade to Windows 10, please do one of the following:
        * click Yes
        * click No
        * Click OK
        * Click Cancel
        * Click the X to close the popup window
        * Disconnect the computer's electrical power to have Windows 10 automatically installed at your next reboot

        Windows 10! From the people who brought you Vista and Edlin!

        --
        When trying to solve a problem don't ask who suffers from the problem, ask who profits from the problem.
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by takyon on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:48PM (8 children)

      by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {soylentnews.org}> on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:48PM (#1098983) Journal

      People who need it in a webpage will probably go with Ruffle [wikipedia.org]. The Internet Archive is using it.

      --
      [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
      • (Score: 4, Touché) by fustakrakich on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:57PM (2 children)

        by fustakrakich (6150) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:57PM (#1098990) Journal

        How many logic bombs are lingering in hardware? It this why my Mac IIx quit running? It was the ultimate in modern NuBus technology, and poof!

        --
        La politica e i criminali sono la stessa cosa..
        • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:12PM (1 child)

          by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:12PM (#1099112) Journal

          I got rid of my IIci's a long time ago.

          I kept my PowerMac 7500 and 7600 for as long as they were still useful. No upgrade path after Steve Jobs came back to haunt Apple.

          I still have a desktop Power Mac G3 that runs Classic Mac OS 9, with huge AppleVision monitor, and in very pristine condition.

          --
          When trying to solve a problem don't ask who suffers from the problem, ask who profits from the problem.
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @11:27PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @11:27PM (#1099161)

            I still miss my Amiga 1000. Best computer (for its time) that I ever owned.

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by RamiK on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:56PM

        by RamiK (1813) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:56PM (#1099042)

        People who need it in a webpage will probably go with Ruffle [wikipedia.org].

        I just recently converted an old website's .fla animated intro into an animated .svg using Flash2Svg [github.com] and adobe animate trial subscription. It's limited to simple animations and more cumbersome to workout but it doesn't depend on javascript or webassembly.

        But yeah. If you don't have the sources or if you need the interactivity logic, Ruffle is the way to go.

        --
        compiling...
      • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Tuesday January 12 2021, @09:42PM (3 children)

        by RS3 (6367) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @09:42PM (#1099097)

        Thank you so much, I hadn't heard of Ruffle.

        A few years ago a client of mine bought a security camera system (that I installed and set up remote monitoring) that uses Adobe Flash (bizarre) for the remote / web view. Of course it's now broken.

        I tried the Ruffle plugin but it does nothing, and the whole web page gets really messed up.

        The camera company just released a firmware update a few weeks ago, but frustratingly uses Flash to do the update. IE, if Flash won't load, you can't update the firmware.

        It turns out you can turn your computer's date back and Flash will run, so we can remote view the building, and I did the firmware update, but it's still Flash-based.

        Not sure what's going to happen. This reminds me of the FCC invalidating RF frequencies for very expensive pro audio mics and systems. The camera system is now trash, and for no good reason. Hopefully someone will reverse-engineer the Flash player and clip out the date-checking algorithm. I might look at it if I have the stomach for it...

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @11:09PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @11:09PM (#1099145)

          Report the bug. If you can get them a copy of the files they need, they seem more than happy to fix bugs.

        • (Score: 2) by NateMich on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:02AM (1 child)

          by NateMich (6662) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:02AM (#1099277)

          Not sure what's going to happen.

          Money will be spent.

          • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:30AM

            by RS3 (6367) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:30AM (#1099286)

            So that's how we feed the economy!

            Or wait, maybe it's how we fill the landfills and keep the trashtrucks and workers in business?...

            Money will be spent wasted.

            FTFY.

    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:51PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:51PM (#1098986)

      Don't worry, GNU's got your back: https://www.gnu.org/software/gnash/ [gnu.org]

      Or did, gnash seems to have petered out 8 or 9 years ago ... but surely contained no datecoded logic bombs.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:54PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:54PM (#1098988)

      You are right. In this case it was a good thing, but in reality it has and will be misused instead of being a rarely needed option to make the world better.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:13PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:13PM (#1099005)

      Meanwhile, in the industrial software business, our customers have requested a hard coded time bomb be *added* to our software, updated yearly. The customer is a large car company, the software is custom, expensive to develop, and distributed to racing teams that race their cars.

      Personnel at the race teams jump around to other race teams, often the team members change jobs in the off-season (usually winter for N. America and Europe). This is just one way the customer attempts to protect their IP investment from competing teams and other car companies.

      Network licenses are a problem, since many race tracks and test areas are out in the boonies, so the software needs to run without a net connection.

    • (Score: 2) by edIII on Tuesday January 12 2021, @09:03PM

      by edIII (791) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @09:03PM (#1099081)

      There used to a lot of very interesting flash games. Whack the penguin to see how far you get it, Find the trans person (didn't age well), and very unique puzzle games. Not to mention a lot of comedy. Camp Chaos was pretty funny back in the day, and they published flash videos.

      If there is any kind of cyber museum in the works for all that art, it will need a way to render those files and show it.

      Adobe at the very least could've created a flash-to-HTML5 converter.

      --
      Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
  • (Score: 4, Funny) by hash14 on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:25PM (2 children)

    by hash14 (1102) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:25PM (#1099014)

    Our Corporate IT staff just told us to turn our clocks back to 2020 so we can continue using it. They decided it was the cheaper, and therefore, better solution over having to migrate all our shite.

    As a side benefit, no certificate updates needed anymore either! So novel, we just have to accept that it'll be 2020 forever. Anyway, I guess they're all using Manjaro on their home machines.

    • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @11:38AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @11:38AM (#1099367)

      Let me guess, C-level all Trumpers?

    • (Score: 2) by Zinho on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:14PM

      by Zinho (759) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:14PM (#1099410)

      Our Corporate IT staff just told us to turn our clocks back to 2020 so we can continue using it.

      I just tried that on my home computer, and the flash plugin wasn't fooled. I hope your org has better luck.

      --
      "Space Exploration is not endless circles in low earth orbit." -Buzz Aldrin
  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:30PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 12 2021, @07:30PM (#1099018)

    That vulnerability-ridden garbage belongs on the dust heap of history and should have gone away nearly a decade ago [wikipedia.org].

    Good riddance to bad garbage.

  • (Score: 2) by looorg on Tuesday January 12 2021, @08:01PM (2 children)

    by looorg (578) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @08:01PM (#1099047)

    Are there not still plenty of repositories where it can be downloaded from? So it's like some creepy lingering zombie-software that will just never really go away but always be around. Im sure that there will "soon" be the height of retro to run flash stuff on your online hipster gathering spot.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by iWantToKeepAnon on Tuesday January 12 2021, @08:25PM (1 child)

    by iWantToKeepAnon (686) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @08:25PM (#1099056) Homepage Journal

    Hindsight is 20/20 and now everyone is saying good riddance, but in the beginning flash was the only viable solution for video on the internet. It gave rise to youtube, for all the good and bad that is a net positive. And I remember getting in a few pot shots at Osama bin Laden, that was cool.

    Instead of giving flash a kick in the ribs and feeling smug, why not say thanks and so long and thanks for all the fish?

    --
    "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." -- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
    • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:38AM

      by RS3 (6367) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @03:38AM (#1099288)

      That, and I notice Flash videos use less CPU than html5 and alternatives. Stated another way, I could play higher resolution videos in Flash than html5.

      Some years ago I had a gig doing online courses. I didn't teach, just put the stuff together. At the end was a quiz done in Adobe Flash, and I would write it in "actionscript". Not my idea, but it was a pretty good way to prevent cheating. I'm sure there are many detractors who will correct me and tell me how insecure it was, how easily broken, cheated on, etc., but still more difficult to crack than some javascript thing. Again, none of it was my creation- I was just the grunt.

  • (Score: 2) by Dr Spin on Tuesday January 12 2021, @09:35PM

    by Dr Spin (5239) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @09:35PM (#1099094)

    But who is going to make it lie down?

    --
    Warning: Opening your mouth may invalidate your brain!
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DannyB on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:15PM (2 children)

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:15PM (#1099114) Journal

    Raise your hand if you remember Macromedia.

    Remember VideoWorks from MacroMind? I have lots of fond memories of that. I saw the color version of VideoWorks when I was at MacWorld tirade show for my employer back in about 1988, and was awestruck. I immediately forked over, I think it was about $400 ish to have my own copy in my hands on the spot.

    --
    When trying to solve a problem don't ask who suffers from the problem, ask who profits from the problem.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @11:49AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @11:49AM (#1099372)

      I distinctly remember some being very annoyed about some obtuse setup procedure for "Macromedia Shockwave" when I was young, and avoiding flash for some time due to that bias.

      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Wednesday January 13 2021, @02:18PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday January 13 2021, @02:18PM (#1099386) Journal

        I never used Flash. The VideoWorks product I speak of predated Flash considerably. It predated the first web browser.

        --
        When trying to solve a problem don't ask who suffers from the problem, ask who profits from the problem.
  • (Score: 2) by SomeGuy on Wednesday January 13 2021, @12:05AM (2 children)

    by SomeGuy (5632) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @12:05AM (#1099186)

    Long live HTML5!

    [Giant dizzying carousel graphics]

    [Feedback tab pops out of the side]

    [Live site help box animates at the bottom waving and pulsing and making sounds and won't go away]

    [The text I want to read zooms around as I move your mouse cursor or scroll]

    Please kill me.

    • (Score: 2) by deimtee on Wednesday January 13 2021, @01:31AM (1 child)

      by deimtee (3272) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @01:31AM (#1099239) Journal

      Bring back the <BLINK> tag!

      --
      If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
      • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday January 13 2021, @04:58PM

        by Freeman (732) on Wednesday January 13 2021, @04:58PM (#1099460) Journal

        I thought that evil thing was still viable. Apparently, it was discontinued a long time ago. I am very glad for that.

        --
        Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @12:48AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @12:48AM (#1099209)

    Passed through PIT today and I noticed the flight info displays had the flash logos on screen. Though today was the 11th.

    • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Wednesday January 13 2021, @02:05AM

      by barbara hudson (6443) <barbara.Jane.hudson@icloud.com> on Wednesday January 13 2021, @02:05AM (#1099256) Journal
      You don't need a plug-in to run flash. There were plenty of standalone players distributed. See if you can dig up a Flash MX 2004 disk - no time bomb in there.

      Also, time bombs are supposed to be illegal. Something about damaging a computing system …

      --
      SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @04:46AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @04:46AM (#1099310)

    Most important site on the web still works. Flash can go!

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