adobe has abandoned authorware users

There, I’ve said it.

IE7 shipped yesterday and among the many changes is one that has caused Authoware Web Player calls to JavaScript in the embedding HTML to fail. (The bug ticket in Microsoft Connect was here). This is a significant issue as e-learning content delivered in the Authorware Web Player is commonly accessed through SCORM Learning Management Systems (LMS), and SCORM requires that content communicate across a JavaScript API.

There does seem to be a workaround which involves loading the page that embeds the Authorware content as either a frame or iframe element. While tests indicate this is a successful workaround, it is a disconcerting one as I haven’t been able to track down why it works. Depending upon various LMS environments it can also be a difficult, or at the very least, time consuming workaround to implement.

This has been a known issue since the early IE7 beta releases and was reported to both Microsoft and Adobe. After a last ditch campaign by members of the AWARE list and some persistent questioning during the October IE7 Expert’s Chat the significance of the problem was brought to the IE7 team’s attention. As I both suspected and feared, Microsoft seemed to indicate that this was a problem that would need to be resolved by the Authorware Web Player.

Where was Adobe through all of this? Good question. As I mentioned, the bug was communicated through official channels sometime ago (May 2006 to be exact) and was also discussed on mailing lists and in forums (on at least one of those lists members have an expectation of monitoring and participation from Adobe representatives). All has resulted in deafening silence.

As things currently stand I have lost confidence in Adobe’s commitment to the Authorware community. Authorware developers, like developers everywhere, are a resourceful and independent lot and have grown used to “fending for themselves” (perhaps more so that other developers) but now Adobe needs to stand up and support them.

8 Responses

  1. Dave says:

    October 26, 2006 at 1:12 pm

    Forget it, Andrew. It’s Chinatown.

  2. andrew says:

    October 26, 2006 at 8:28 pm

    sigh, you’re probably right Dave. It sure is disappointing though.

    How does that saying go… Burn me once…

  3. John Dowdell says:

    October 27, 2006 at 2:24 pm

    I’m sorry that there’s a problem, and that there’s been a lack of interim information, and that I’ve personally been so slow on picking up on this problem. I don’t know anything about the issue yet myself but am escalating it today — it may not be until early next week when we get some solid info here.

    Again, my apologies to all who have lost time dealing with this issue — let me see how I can help make things right…


  4. andrew says:

    October 27, 2006 at 2:36 pm

    JD, Thank you.

  5. Brett says:

    June 28, 2007 at 11:04 pm

    Thanks JD…but any luck…for us die-hard Authorware users…I guess it is time to move on to greener pastures and quit beating this dead horse

  6. C4 says:

    August 29, 2007 at 6:28 pm

    Just an FYI; Unfortunately it seems the bug will still trigger if you attempt to dynamically write the contents of an iframe by setting the .src property or doing something like: myiFrame.write(authorware_embed_HTML).

  7. C4 says:

    August 29, 2007 at 8:53 pm

    If your doing any dynamic Authorware launching in IE7 you’ll need to load a blank HTML file in the launch iFrame then dynamically write to that frame’s body.innerHTML; instead of writing the entire HTML document with javascript and calling or myiFrame.write().

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