Markup: Automatic Quicktime and Flash Detection?

started by Mpj on Dec 6, 2004 — RSS Feed

Mpj Mpj
Posts: 76

Hi

I'm hoping someone can help with this little problem or at least poni me in the direction of a good tutorial.

I've been asked to deploy an e-Christmas Card for a company. They have an animated version of the card in Flash and Quicktime formats that they want on a new page of their website. Visitors will arrive directly at this page via a link from an email.

I'm looking for a method of automatic detection (similar to Macromedias Flash Detection Kit) that will diplay the Flash version to people with Flash Player installed and display the Quicktime version of the animation to those with Quicktime installed. Also if people have both players installed I want to offer them the choice.

I want to make all this as seamless as possible so I'm trying to avoid asking people to choose manually using methods like "Click HERE for the Flash version or HERE for the Quicktime version"

Thanks...

Joe Gillespie Joe Gillespie
Posts: 528

Do you really need a Quicktime version? Flash is by far the most ubiquitous plug-in there is and has a much larger installed based than Quicktime - which tend to be mostly Macs. Some PC users have Quicktime but I wouldn't think it would be a significant proportion as it requires a deliberate install. I find it hard to imagine anybody that has Quicktime installed and not Flash player.

Unless you really need some specific Quicktime capabilities, I'd just do a Flash version.

Mpj Mpj
Posts: 76

1. The customer is a small print design and marketing firm that just uses Macs. I'm betting that they'll prefer to see a Quicktime version over a Flash version when they preview everything offline.

2. Quicktime has the "Fast Start" fake streaming facility that is much more engaging than the boring "Loading........................" that you see on Flash animations.

3. A detection script that checks for Quicktime and defaults to Flash will encompass more visitors than Flash only. OK, maybe not that many more but you never know...

Joe Gillespie Joe Gillespie
Posts: 528

I don't think that there is any way to do this automatically. You could detect if it was a Mac or not from the user agent string and serve Quicktime for all Mac users and Flash (or WMP) for all PC users. There is a roundabout way to detect the Flash plugin from JavaScript but I've never used it and can't vouch for its reliability.

Mpj Mpj
Posts: 76

I think I've found a solution thanks Joe. Macromedia do their own Flash detection kit and I've found a similar set of javascripts for Quicktime. I've even found something that appears to do both.

If any of these prove to be reliable I'll post up the links.

Hey! Aren't you supposed to be retired? What are doing answering my questions now?

Joe Gillespie Joe Gillespie
Posts: 528

mpj said:


Hey! Aren't you supposed to be retired? What are doing answering my questions now?


I'm 'retiring' at the end of the month to a little art studio about half a mile away with no phone or net access...bliss!

Mpj Mpj
Posts: 76

net access I can't live without right now but "no phone" - that sounds like paradise!

Maskodok Eko Maskodok Eko
Posts: 171

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