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Larry Ullman's Book Forums

Javascript Build Of Language Learning App

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Hello All,


I have a buildup underway of an app I've posted here in the forums before.  The functionality to be duplicated is made with Flex and can be seen here,  www.unlockspanish.com


The build is available here,


My question is, if a user types a word in the dictionary (left side of adjacent input field in upper right corner)  there is a prompt to install a plugin.


I'm surprised that a plugin isn't already installed on most browsers to do a very common task (play an mp3 file which is the pronunciation of the word).  Additionally this plugin is Apple Quicktime.  One further complication is that I was unable to install this plugin on either of my systems.


I'm wondering if there is an approach to this situation which would not require a plugin install, as of course, many people are adverse to installing anything on their computers.  It seems there should be a way for this to work without any user adjustments to their systems.


All input is greatly appreciated.

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You could make use of the <audio> element for native browser support [to avoid plug-ins] but unfortunately and as always, there are browser compatibility issues, you can find more about that here: 


If all browsers supported OGG, that would be great but for now, they don't.

There are also licensing issues with mp3.


As an alternative solution, I wonder would embedding a soundcloud be workable? Just a thought.

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kbear, StephenM is right.

The new HTML5 audio tag is the best native browser solution, but it's not supported in some browsers. You could just force your users to upgrade their browser to use your site, but before you go that route, you might want to evaluate your user base (i.e., figure out what percentage are using browsers that don't support the audio tag). From that, you can decide whether it's worth forcing users to upgrade or not.

If you need more complete browser support, then you absolutely will have to force users to install an external plug-in, with Flash being the most common option.

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