August 1, 2006


I’ve been using SWFObject for quite a while now and it amazes me that developers out there still don’t know about it, especially with all the news around Microsoft’s EOLAS case late last year.

SWFObject is a tasty method for embedding Macromedia Flash content into your web pages and has (among others) the following functionality which alone are reason to be using it!

  • Flash detection
  • Search engine friendly
  • Validates to HTML and XHTML (as long as pages sent as text/html, not application/xhtml+xml.)
  • Degrades beautifully!

All you need to do is add your .js file in the :

<script src="swfobject.js" type="text/javascript"></script>

Then use the following code:

<div id="flashcontent">
  This text is replaced by the Flash movie.
<script type="text/javascript">
   var so = new SWFObject("movie.swf", "mymovie", "200", "100", "7", "#336699");

Note the <div id=“flashcontent”>? Inside this div is where you’ll store any HTML to be displayed if the user doesn’t have flash. So you can have a link to Adobe to get the latest flash player, an alternate image or simply display HTML!

One problem I had is with users on low bandwidth seeing this HTML (non-flash) content before the Flash has a chance to load. To get around this I had the content within the non-flash div hidden (using CSS) then onload() make it visible.

Download SWFObject here

© Michael Sharman 2017