Notable users of Flash include DHX Media Vancouver for productions including Pound Puppies and My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Fresh TV for Total Drama, Nelvana for 6teen and Clone High, Williams Street for Metalocalypse and Squidbillies, Nickelodeon Animation Studios for Wow! Flash is less commonly used for feature-length animated films; however, 2009's The Secret of Kells, an Irish film, was animated primarily in Adobe Flash, and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature at the 82nd Academy Awards.Several popular online series are currently produced in Flash, such as the Emmy Award-winning Off-Mikes, produced by ESPN and Animax Entertainment; Gotham Girls, produced by Warner Brothers; Crime Time, produced by Future Thought Productions and Homestar Runner produced by Mike and Matt Chapman.Third-party IDEs such as Flash Develop and Powerflasher FDT also enable developers to create Flash games and applications, and are generally similar to Microsoft Visual Studio.Flex applications are typically built using Flex frameworks such as Pure MVC.In 2000, the first major version of Action Script was developed, and released with Flash 5.Actionscript 2.0 was released with Flash MX 2004 and supported object-oriented programming, improved UI components, and other advanced programming features.
Flash is also used to build interfaces and HUDs for 3D video games using Scaleform GFx, a technology that renders Flash content within non-Flash video games.
Macromedia upgraded the Flash system significantly from 1996 to 1999, adding Movie Clips, Actions (the precursor to Action Script), Alpha transparency, and other features.
As Flash matured, Macromedia's focus shifted from marketing it as a graphics and media tool to promoting it as a Web application platform, adding scripting and data access capabilities to the player while attempting to retain its small footprint.
The company was founded by Charlie Jackson, Jonathan Gay, and Michelle Welsh.
In November 1996, Future Splash was acquired by Macromedia, and Macromedia re-branded and released Future Splash Animator as Macromedia Flash 1.0.Flash was a two-part system, a graphics and animation editor known as Macromedia Flash, and a player known as Macromedia Flash Player.