Flash advances rich media search via Yahoo!, Google

2 Jul 2008

Dynamic, rich media content is practically an integral part of every website, yet making that content easily searchable on the web by indexing elements within it has not been very successful, until now.

Web designers creating Flash sites may have had a great rich media site but were faced with the fact this would not be picked up and returned as a relevant search on a web portal like Google.

“Until now, it has been extremely challenging to search the millions of RIAs [rich internet applications] and dynamic content on the web, so we are leading the charge in improving search of content that runs in Adobe Flash Player,” said David Wadhwani, general manager and vice-president of the Platform Business Unit at Adobe.

Right now Google, later to be followed by Yahoo!, will be able to index the SWF files associated with Flash site elements thanks to Adobe’s new Flash technology.

“We are initially working with Google and Yahoo! to significantly improve search of this rich content on the web, and we intend to broaden the availability of this capability to benefit all content publishers, developers and end users,” Wadhwani said.

While this is a significant step forward in developing a searchable, indexable web that does not rely on keywords and text alone, for now this does not mean that pure image or video content (even video with text elements) will be searchable on Yahoo! or Google.

Google also added that FLV files, the video format that is played on YouTube, will not be indexed automatically by the search engine.

By Marie Boran