A few short weeks before we finally bid Flash adieu, Adobe has rolled out one final Flash Player update. Rather than the detailed feature changes that we typically read about in patch notes, Adobe used the opportunity to give the software a fond sendoff.
"Today marks the final scheduled release of Flash Player for all regions outside of Mainland China," Adobe wrote. "We want to take a moment to thank all of our customers and developers who have used and created amazing Flash Player content over the last two decades. We are proud that Flash had a crucial role in evolving web content across animation, interactivity, audio, and video. We are excited to help lead the next era of digital experiences."
The company will stop supporting Flash Player after December 31st and it'll block Flash content from running in the player as of January 12th. Adobe is urging people to uninstall Flash Player now to help protect their systems. Major browsers and platforms are also ending support for Flash.
The software has been a cornerstone of the web for decades. Usage has declined over the years and alternative open standards such as HTML5, WebGL and WebAssembly are more secure. Sure, Flash was buggy (as Steve Jobs famously wrote), but it was a conduit for some of the web's more weird and wonderful experiences. Thankfully, the Internet Archive has thousands of animations, games and other Flash apps that you can run with an emulator.