Every time I go to an event like FlashForward or Macromedia MAX I walk away with the same thought ringing in my ears – we have become too enamored with our own technology and have lost sight of what it is we are doing. The bottom line is that consumers respond to great ideas and experiences and could care less about the latest version and features of Flash Player.
Technology is not an idea. Production techniques are not idea.. We have fallen into the trap where we are more caught up in the tools we use than the story we are trying to tell. Successful and breakthrough work does not focus on the latest video codec but rather lets the technology become transparent so the idea can shine through.
I think that this problem starts with the curriculums I see at colleges and art school who have degrees in web design. Teaching the applications and technology should only be part of the equation. The teachers and students need to look down the road to the fact that if you only focus on applications then you will be nothing more than a commodity. I can find a hundred people who can produce sites in Flash but finding someone who knows how to create great experiences with the technology is a lot harder. The only this is going to change is if we change the way to teach new designers and we have to change the way we approach our work.