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On Googling Flash

Google announced recently that their spiders have "learned" to crawl and index Flash content on websites. Flash designers are celebrating, CSS designers are probably a bit nervous. There goes part of our ammo in the "why CSS is better than Flash" battle. But, there’s hope for us CSSers.

From Google’s own blog entry about the breakthrough, "Google has been developing a new algorithm for indexing textual content in Flash files of all kinds, from Flash menus, buttons and banners, to self-contained Flash websites." Key words here: textual content.

Google can now read the words your Flash sites display. But it can’t gain any insight into the other pieces such as backgrounds or images. CSS has multiple techniques for accomplishing this task. So, go ahead and celebrate, Flashers (heh). But if you ask me, CSS still has the upper hand in this tilt.