Lightspark 0.4.4 is out
The <a rel="external" href="http://sourceforge.net/projects/lightspark/" target="_blank">Lightspark</a> project has released version 0.4.4 of its free, open source Flash player. The latest version of the alternative Flash Player implementation includes a number of <a rel="external" href="https://bugs.launchpad.net/lightspark" target="_blank">bug fixes</a> and several new features.
Lightspark 0.4.4 features the addition of support for localisation using <a rel="external" href="http://www.gnu.org/software/gettext/" target="_blank">gettext</a> and ActionScript exception handling. Other changes include more robust network handling and stream controls, such as Play, Pause and Stop. According to Lightspark lead developer <a rel="external" href="https://launchpad.net/%7Ea-pignotti" target="_blank">Alessandro Pignotti</a>, while the video stream controls are now supported, they won't be usable in most YouTube videos because "mouse event dispatching to controls is still clobbered by missing masking support". Localised error messages have also been added and users are invited to help contribute to any existing and missing translations.
Pignotti says that the next release, version 0.4.5, will likely see the plugin audio backend being merged upstream – the first step towards supporting multiple audio backends. The developers is also reportedly looking into "a new faster and more powerful graphics architecture". It is expected to use a combination of both hardware and software rendering.
More information about the latest update can be found in the <a rel="external" href="http://allievi.sssup.it/techblog/?p=578" target="_blank">official release announcement</a>. Lightspark 0.4.4 is available to download as an Ubuntu package in a <a rel="external" href="https://launchpad.net/%7Esssup/+archive/sssup-ppa" target="_blank">Launchpad PPA</a> repository. Fedora 13 packages are also available for the i686 platform and <a rel="external" href="http://sourceforge.net/apps/trac/lightspark/wiki/Building" target="_blank">installation instructions</a> are provided on the project's wiki page. Lightspark is licensed under the GPL.