Wunderman

The Adobe Flash Runtime Crisis

In 2015 Hackers exploited the Adobe Flash Runtime targeting NATO officials in an attempt to doxx classified information.

 

As a result, Google’s Chrome and Mozilla’s Firefox stepped forward to announce that they would be ending native support for their browsers and the Adobe Flash Runtime in 2020.

This was a major technological setback for everyone. The Flash Runtime was extremely efficient at utilizing device hardware to run rich-media at blazing speeds while constraining file sizes. No one had a clear solution to the problem. The runtime was tied into the very structure of the early internet.

A small group of us at Wunderman saw the writing on the wall and what it meant for the future business of the agency, the relationship of their clients, and the landscape of media on the internet. We formed a plan with management to be one of the first agencies ever to proactively react to this news. We led the transitioning of the international banner media pipeline from Buenos Aires and the Flash Runtime to the the Minneapolis office and the new HTML5 canvas and JS format. We established new standards based on our own experiences and guidance from Adobe’s platform developers, making banners a more of a seamless experience, more accessible, and compliant to the restructuring internet. We also made a case for hiring new animators for the influx of work. We were riding the cusp of what was technologically possible.

In hindsight; this was a good thing. Mobile devices are now a more direct means of browsing the internet. Much like reality things, crisis was required to force a change. I believe we mitigated a lot of potential damage to Wunderman and at the same time, helped to redefine standards that hadn’t been touched since the 90’s (40kb to 200kb+ delivery size) which are still being recycled to date.

Adobe Flash became a sort of profanity over time, specifically because of Apple’s propaganda. Adobe was forced to rename Flash to Animate, and began pouring resources into expanding their native HTML5 canvas portion of the API, that had already been there for years before this event. Regardless of its name, Adobe Animate is a 25+ year old tool with genius behind it. There were some creative trade offs as a result of switching over to HTML5 but even still, it is easily the best banner tool in the creative shed especially when compared to other flagship banner development tools, like Google’s Web Designer

Here is some of the work from that frontier.

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Rich Media Development for Digital Signage in New York City

Broadway | 42nd st | 33rd Ave

HTML5 Banner bread & butter

Banner Town never sleeps. Please click on one of these to watch the HTML5 animation. These are three banners from thousands I have developed. Tip : If the link is unable to play, please turn off your Adblockers

Microsoft Intel Campaign

Microsoft

Samsung UHD Campaign

UHD

Holiday XBOX Bundle Campaign

Halo

Email Campaigns for Mobile and Desktop

Social Media

Brand Redesign

Banner Development for GeekSquad

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Project Details

I accepted a full time freelance contract with Wunderman, in a hybrid role, 2 parts animator, 1 part developer, 1 part designer. It was vague but promising.

Over the next few years, my role molded into a position where I would be working across the banner, email, social, print, and digital teams to raise Wunderman’s overall creative profile across all digital capacities and make Best Buy look really great.