Jan just posted a great article about Silverlight, Flash and RIAs in general. As expected, Jan approaches the topic from a video angle, but comes to some of the same conclusions as many of us here in the Flash camp: "If Microsoft dropped Silverlight tomorrow, most web site owners and 'Netizens' wouldn't even notice, or care if they did."

And of course I'd like to give Jan a hug for quotes such as "Flash caught on because it provided design functionality that HTML couldn't match and solved problems that no other technology could. It succeeded because website designers, developers and owners wanted it, not because Adobe needed it."

Very true. And that also means that Adobe gave those designers, developers and content owners the right tools for the job at the right time. Let's not underestimate the foresight Adobe had back in 2000 or so - long before anyone ever heard of Youtube and the like - when the foundations were laid to make Flash the de facto video standard on the web. While I doubt they envisaged quite this level of success they were certainly aiming for it. Has Adobe been able to leverage the success of Flash video and turn it into a money spinner for themselves? Not really. But have they managed to secure the future of the Flash platform for some time to come? Definitely.

It's onwards and upwards from here for Flash video. Adobe is undoubtedly busy cooking new and clever features in the labs, and anyone who has seen or watched the RTMFP sneak peaks at MAX knows that this technology could be another game changer. I can't wait to see more. There are many good ideas still to be had.

PS: I recommend you read Jan's full article, including the first part which focuses more on UGC and H.264.