Lightspark, one of the newest free software projects designed to provide an open-source implementation of Adobe's Flash/SWF specification, has been progressing at a rather expedited pace. Lightspark continues to pickup new features with each new release, which as of late have been occurring frequently. Less than a month ago, Lightspark 0.4.2 was released and version 0.4.3 is already approaching with the first release candidate having been released this weekend.
Back in May this free software Flash player entered beta
and at that point it supported OpenGL-based rendering, a near-complete implementation of the Adobe ActionScript 3.0 language, performance profiling and debugging capabilities, and a Flash plug-in that's compatible with Mozilla-based web-browsers. With the most recent development cycle it picked up many more features
such as H.264 YouTube video support, a JIT engine that leverages the Low-Level Virtual Machine (LLVM), audio support via PulseAudio, and optimizations to the SSE2 based video packer.
Some of the other recent features
committed to this open-source project are Google Chrome/Chromium browser plug-in support, sound synchronization support, fontconfig for font selection, and Mozilla Firefox Out-Of-Process Plug-In support.
Today's release of Lightspark 0.4.3 Release Candidate 1 delivers on faster rendering, reduced memory consumption, support for H.263/MP3 videos, and smoother audio and video playback. The H.263/MP3 video support is implemented using FFmpeg
The Lightspark 0.4.3 RC1 release announcement can be read on the blog
of Alessandro Pignotti, the lead developer of this hopeful open-source project. Source and Ubuntu PPA packages for this newest Lightspark test release can be found on Launchpad
. If past Lightspark releases are any sign, the feature-set for 0.4.3 is not yet complete and with coming release candidates we will likely see new features introduced.