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Adobe Shockwave Description
Adobe Shockwave (formerly Macromedia Shockwave) was Macromedia's first and most successful multimedia player prior to the introduction of Adobe Flash, called Macromedia Flash at that time. In an attempt to raise its brand profile all Macromedia players prepended Shockwave to their names in the late 1990s. Although this campaign was very successful and helped establish Shockwave Flash as a dominant multimedia plugin, Shockwave and Flash became more difficult to maintain as two separate products. In 2005, Macromedia marketed three distinct browser player plugins under the brand names Macromedia Authorware, Macromedia Shockwave and Macromedia Flash.
Although Shockwave was designed for making a wide variety of online movies and animations, its actual use has become concentrated in the area of game development. Other features not replicated by Flash include a much faster rendering engine, including hardware-accelerated 3D, blend modes for layered display of graphic assets and support for various network protocols, including Internet Relay Chat. Furthermore Shockwave's functionality can be extended with so-called "Xtras". Unlike Flash, the Shockwave browser plugin is not available for Linux (or Solaris) despite vocal lobbying efforts by the Linux community.
According to Adobe, Macromedia Shockwave Player is available on 50.6% of Internet-enabled PCs (Shockwave Player Census). Macromedia Shockwave Player uses .DCR files created using the authoring tool Macromedia Director. Its MIME type is application/x-director.