Adobe Flash began its development as a drawing application known as SmartSketch, to be used on pen computers that were running the PenPoint Operating System. Jonathan Gay, the developer, was still in college when he began work on this application, and continued the development of the idea for Silicon Beach Software and the companies that came after.
Unfortunately PenPoint was unsuccessful in the marketplace, and SmartSketch was transferred to Microsoft Windows and the Mac OS. As the internet began to gain in popularity SmartSketch was once again released, but this time as FutureSplash. FutureSplash went head to head in competition with Macromedia’s Shockwave as a vector-based web animator. SmartSketch was once again modified and now had frame-by-frame animation features. In its newest incarnation it was called FutureSplash Animator and could work on multiple platforms.
Finally, this new product was purchased by Adobe and utilized by Microsoft in its beginning work with the internet (MSN.) After this, FutureSplash was purchased by Macromedia and once again released, but this time contracting the words future and splash to arrive at its present name Flash.