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View Full Version : Microsoft, Adobe Competition Heats Up


RobertoOrtiz
04-19-2007, 06:20 PM
Microsoft Corp. is preparing to launch Expression Studio, a series of tools for designers and Web developers to compete directly with Adobe.

The article discusses the impact these series of tool are expected to have in the market:

http://ibtimes.com/articles/20070416/microsoft-adobe-competition.htm

inguatu
04-19-2007, 06:26 PM
interesting. I wouldn't mind demo'ing the tool once it comes out. Unfortunately I think this thread will turn into a Microsoft-bashfest. :(

RobertoOrtiz
04-19-2007, 06:36 PM
interesting. I wouldn't mind demo'ing the tool once it comes out. Unfortunately I think this thread will turn into a Microsoft-bashfest. :(

If it does, Ill close the thread myself.

-R

ThirdEye
04-19-2007, 06:48 PM
Considering PS has the monopoly and the latest versions have been quite minor i'm glad someone heats up the competition. Let's see what they do in Redmond.

inguatu
04-19-2007, 07:12 PM
Yup.. I'm a firm believer in competition helps to foster innovation (or at least copying and making better).

With that in mind, I was really hoping that Adobe would work on an AFX timeline for Flash CS3. I understand they want to not confuse the current group of Flash users, but I do wish something more could've been done.

Tlock
04-19-2007, 08:01 PM
I like competition, but let's be realistic. MS has a common business practice of saying things are Platform Independent until they dominate the market and then pull all support for other platforms making some sort excuse other OS's can't do what Windows does. This is not a bashing of MS but rather a simple reflection of this. Let's consider!!

Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player and soon Office. Personally as a developer and designer i may consider using the product but only if it exported to Flash, otherwise i wouldn't even look at it.

Tirjasdyn
04-19-2007, 08:13 PM
This time around, Microsoft said Expression Web will generate HTML and other code that complies with industry standards. It's also discontinued FrontPage.

Good news and bad news...we don't need a tool to generate code. I don't have high hopes for this...as a web developer for my company, I've been taring my hair out over ie7. It doesn't comply with standards...it just needs new hacks, more than ie6 did. Frontpage generates more $ with the amatur first time crowd rather than the majority of developers.

Microsoft's Expression tools will also let graphic designers try their hand at creating desktop software. In the past, designers worked in Photoshop, then handed a static picture off to programmers, who often had a hard time translating it into a working Web site or application. Expression's programs let designers draw and manipulate images using a familiar interface, but behind the scenes the tools also generate code programmers can work with.

I'm sorry, this doesn't make any sense. The web designer / programmer is a blurred line, I can't name one company works this way with coders who have trouble turning that design into a web interface....

And what code are they talking about? C? HTML? .net? MS interfaces for "desktop" software havent' been that fancy until vista...is that what they're talking about. Weird.


"'Making Windows applications previously was like this black art,"' said Lee Brimelow, a senior design technologist at Frog Design who has been working with Microsoft's new tools to design Yahoo Inc.'s instant messaging client for Windows Vista. Now, you "'don't have to be a Microsoft programming geek to do it."'

Lol, he must be a marketer...I've never heard interface design called a black art before even with ms products.

Microsoft points out that its hybrid applications can take advantage of a local PC's graphics card to create intricate 3-D interfaces, for instance, that would be impossible with older Web tools.



Ick...can you say software conflict waiting to happen.

Apollo, as Adobe calls the early version of its hybrid technology, lets Web developers and designers wrap up all the pieces of a sophisticated Web site - HTML and Ajax coding, Flash videos and animation, and even PDFs - and turn them into a program that can run on the desktop even if the computer is offline.

Even PDF's...dear god, did they only talk to sales people when they put together this article. It's not like this doesn't work already...and their definition of a sophisticated website is lacking.

On Monday, Adobe announced one of its first Apollo-based programs, a media player that plays Flash video from the desktop. An eBay Inc. hybrid application is also in the works.

It's called widgets...yahoo and goole and macs have been doing it for years...but flash from a desktop has been working since....god knows when....for the last year I've had a little app for so I could run vaninavi on my desktop (a flash program for the clock in FFXI).

If the most interesting programs are built using Flash, people may see less of a need to buy a Windows PC next time they upgrade their computers, some analysts said.

Some one should introduce Bob the Analyst to Java. Sigh.


In the end, this round may come down to whether designers and Web developers will invest the time it takes to learn Microsoft's tools and put up with an end product that only works on Windows.

You mean like pc users have been doing for the last, oh I dunno, twentysome years. This is an old, false arguement.


Also, he isn't interested in limiting his audience.


I love the altruism of Mac users. But consider that's what alot of PC developers do....develop for PC only, I dont' see how this will be a problem for the developers...

I don't know it looks like they talk to a bunch of pundits rather than actual users. We'll have to see.

Ruramuq
04-19-2007, 08:39 PM
adobe is a bad company from my point of view, we are used to it, but it is so inconvenient.
with intrusive installers, and useless addons, excesive memory consumption, slow loading, and quirk things
and flash is a nice product, but makes the internet clumsy. and I've never seen it well integrated in windows

In any case this news are GOOD. even if microsoft products are not so good.

ha-dou-ken
04-19-2007, 08:54 PM
I wonder what is looks like. Hmm...

SFDD
04-19-2007, 10:24 PM
Personally, I'm thrilled at this idea and I hope the Microsoft products are fantastic! Why? Because when Apple started pissing on Adobe by stealing their marketshare with proprietary software for the Mac, Adobe reenforced its commitment to Windows. But with both Apple and Microsoft pissing Adobe off now, it's only a matter of time until we Linux fans hear Adobe say the magic words we've been longing to hear them say: "Adobe Creative Suite 4 now available for Linux."

And THAT will change the entire landscape of what we do as graphics pros.

And do we care if Microsoft starts making its apps proprietary? What, you mean like Apple does now? Why shouldn't Microsoft make its apps proprietary? At least we haven't seen a history of Microsoft buying up cross-platform applications and killing off the other platforms for no other reason than an attempt at forcing marketshare.

Kudos, Microsoft! Make those apps as good as they can be, and I'll be booting Photoshop on Ubuntu within a year.

TetraLynx
04-19-2007, 10:47 PM
I hope this really takes off. The more competition Adobe has the better tools we will all have to enjoy. I was worried when Adobe bought Macromedia but I'm glad to see someone with a competing product coming out.

Koogle
04-19-2007, 11:48 PM
I'm also looking forward to seeing Microsofts more creative applications, I hope they turn out to be really good infact. Adobe could use some more motivation to make better upgrades for its products.. just wished they had never got there hands on Macromedia Flash :( .. still at least they never got hold of Alias.. Maya would have slowy gone to trash I think with the competition gaining its users :) Adobe stay away from 3D please, just stick to your paint brushes etc

btw if you think the photoshop cs3 trial is a lengthy installation, try uninstalling it, that software must inject itself evverywhere :)

Xevious
04-19-2007, 11:50 PM
The previous Expression software was first made by Creature House and Metacreations (I'm not sure which order though); It was later bought by Microsoft.

I have a copy of Expression 3 which I bought years ago and I have to say it really is a solid piece of illustration software. It was stable, very powerful and it could do things that Adobe Illustrator could not do.

I just hope that Microsoft doesn't screw it up.

vintagetone
04-20-2007, 12:30 PM
Enjoyed your post, Tirjasdyn.

TroutMaskReplica
04-20-2007, 02:33 PM
with all the integration happening in CS3, adobe should go the extra step and bundle their own OS as well.

Apoclypse
04-20-2007, 03:01 PM
And do we care if Microsoft starts making its apps proprietary? What, you mean like Apple does now? Why shouldn't Microsoft make its apps proprietary? At least we haven't seen a history of Microsoft buying up cross-platform applications and killing off the other platforms for no other reason than an attempt at forcing marketshare.



Maybe not the exact same thing, but you've ever heard of Corel?

inguatu
04-20-2007, 03:36 PM
Maybe not the exact same thing, but you've ever heard of Corel?

jeebus.. what didn't Corel buy? It's like mommy left the debt card on the table and the daughter, Corel, went on a shopping spree.

specialbrew
04-24-2007, 10:03 AM
As Xevious mentioned, a good deal of Microsoft's entry is based on Creature House's Expression, which was for a time owned and distributed by Fractal Design to compliment the then fairly new Painter. CH later began to re-develop Expression and the result was the excellent and rock-solid Expression 3, which only managed to flourish for a year or two before Microsoft arrived with their cheque book.

Support for Expression 3 abruptly ceased, with only a curt message on CH's homepage, and long-time users of Expression were left pretty much abandoned. It was a grim and extraordinarily thoughtless end to the progress of a lovely piece of software.

Gradually, we understood that Expression's core technology was to form part of a major new initiative on Microsoft's part, perhaps to underpin a built-in 2D vector component to Longhorn (as it was then). This seemed particularly likely as Creature House had also begun development on the promising LivingCells, a version of Expression which was capable of 'natural media' 2D vector animation - a potential rival to Flash and possibly the jewel in CH's crown.

In the event, however, Expression ultimately merely resurfaced as the 'Acrylic' beta, which generally appeared to share the same engine as E3 but was afflicted with a hideous new GUI. Expression's original interface, which had evolved nicely from version 1, was a near-masterpiece of information and control, but MS threw much of this out of the window and the Acrylic GUI was a pretty standard mess of floating palettes. Over time, Acrylic begat, well, Expression, and now Expression Design is the 2D module of their upcoming suite.

Although reportedly Expression Design does contain some bitmap tools absent from the original Expression, the general consensus on the Expression User Group is a move to continue using Expression 3 for as long as it is viable, as it continues to be the superior product. Microsoft's callous handling of E3's original user base - some very expert - also made few friends, and considering that Expression is a niche product (it is not, and never will be, a replacement for Photoshop) they were deeply foolish to alienate a whole bunch of users who knew E3 inside and out. It was a move that still irritates me now, years later.

padib
04-24-2007, 03:38 PM
But with both Apple and Microsoft pissing Adobe off now, it's only a matter of time until we Linux fans hear Adobe say the magic words we've been longing to hear them say: "Adobe Creative Suite 4 now available for Linux."

And THAT will change the entire landscape of what we do as graphics pros.



I agree. I'd jump ship to Linux if this ever happened.

cresshead
04-24-2007, 04:42 PM
depends on the pricepont...i hope they don't use adobe's 200% markup for uk users compared to usa users...that alone has made me reconsider adobe for any software either new or upgrading...unless i want to go on a holiday and buy it in the usa!..which would be intersting!

MS can do good software...lets see what turns up before we poo poo it!

Neil
04-24-2007, 10:22 PM
but they already bundle MS paint with windows. Why would we need this?

yenvalmar
04-25-2007, 01:19 AM
its like fighting fire with napalm.. adobe needs competition from a STARTUP!

jbradley
04-25-2007, 03:11 PM
adobe is a bad company from my point of view, we are used to it, but it is so inconvenient.
with intrusive installers, and useless addons, excesive memory consumption, slow loading, and quirk things
and flash is a nice product, but makes the internet clumsy. and I've never seen it well integrated in windows

In any case this news are GOOD. even if microsoft products are not so good.

Honestly, do you even use the tools? All Adobe software I run - which is all of it practically - runs relatively seamlessly, loads fast and runs fast, and has completely acceptable installers (uh, it's just an installer dude).

From a memory standpoint, I can have the entire CS2 Suite open, with Flash 8 Pro, Flex Builder 2 and jump to working in Maya 8.5 U without any real noticeable impact. Hey - maybe that's because I'm running OS X, which has incredible memory management. Or, maybe because I just have an appropriate machine to do that (quad 2. 5 g5, 4 gb ram).

As far as Flash making the internet clumsy ... seriously? I don't think there is anything to compare Flash to. It will probably take the latter part of a decade for even Microsoft's latest technology, Silverlight, to even have a measurable impact on Flash probably. That's because the technology behind Flash is that good.

Most Adobe products are ingrained in the marketplace and extremely well liked among a vast, vast majority, of designers and developers.

But with both Apple and Microsoft pissing Adobe off now, it's only a matter of time until we Linux fans hear Adobe say the magic words we've been longing to hear them say: "Adobe Creative Suite 4 now available for Linux."

And THAT will change the entire landscape of what we do as graphics pros.

Maybe one day that 0.1% of the creative profession is going to convince Adobe to move to Linux. Most graphics professionals - illustrators, artists, designers - wouldn't touch linux. I use linux for server-side work (tomcat primarily, web-enabled applications), and 3d (rendering/animation). I'd never use Linux for general design work. I don't believe Adobe will ever port their creative suite to it. There's no market for it.

I get annoyed as much as the next person about the business decisions Adobe makes sometimes. But, next time I try to load up a 200 layer, 800 MB Photoshop file and I get a little peeved it doesn't load and run a bit faster - I just have to remind myself that it's 200 layers and 800 MB. :P

That said, I'm all for competition. It keeps companies innovating. I just don't believe there will ever be a more expansive and creative set of applications ever developed outside the Adobe suite.

my 0.02.

inguatu
04-25-2007, 05:10 PM
From a memory standpoint, I can have the entire CS2 Suite open, with Flash 8 Pro, Flex Builder 2 and jump to working in Maya 8.5 U without any real noticeable impact. Hey - maybe that's because I'm running OS X, which has incredible memory management. Or, maybe because I just have an appropriate machine to do that (quad 2. 5 g5, 4 gb ram).



my 0.02.

It's not just because it's OSX. I have it running fine on an old dual Xeon 2ghz, 4g system running XP (also the XP64 dual core AMD at home.. at least some of the CS2 apps). I doubt quad has anything to do with speed as CS2 probably doesn't take advantage of all procs anyways.

Ruramuq
04-26-2007, 03:50 AM
From a memory standpoint, I can have the entire CS2 Suite open, with Flash 8 Pro, Flex Builder 2 and jump to working in Maya 8.5 U without any real noticeable impact. Hey -
maybe that's because I'm running OS X, which has incredible memory management. Or,
maybe because I just have an appropriate machine to do that (quad 2. 5 g5, 4 gb ram).I would say you have a good machine, good to run adobe products, I agree. and I don't have like it, but I have enough. and I wont update my hardware buying the last in computers, only for adobe.
but it is not only about enough ram or power to run them, I know those programs,they are/were good and perhaps flawless for many many designers, the same with flash which is great, indeed it is. but how useful are those program compared to how big and hungry they are becoming?. and how good is to let them rule this game?.
another thing I know is that once you run those programs they are quite stable. and you can work with them, at least if you use them exclusively, but I will not change my mind, about adobe been intrusive not only with the instalation, but by not aking before conecting to their servers, consuming too much ram, not loading fast enough(in my case I use MAX and loading adobeX is like opening a new environment with its own rules, like virtual memory,for example) and excuse me, but I dont see adobe dedicating itself to users, only to themselves.

for example,there is an enormous ethical differece between open source programs and most commercial programs, and I see a clear reason for that. some companies have a hard coded objective "MONEY", and others dont'.

As far as Flash making the internet clumsy ... seriously? I don't think there is anything to compare Flash to. It will probably take the latter part of a decade for even Microsoft's latest technology, Silverlight, to even have a measurable impact on Flash probably. That's because the technology behind Flash is that good.
agree with you, there is NOT anything like flash. but not alway it is something good, and this becomes clear to me, when I see new tools added to many programs, but barely an improvement. Why dont we say : we dont want more, we want better, why?

I used to like macromedia, shockwave(director), dreamwever(good), and another ones, like COOLPRO, that program was about 25MB if I remember, the last time I tried the new coolpro(audition)(now 200MB or more) , it it slower, more ram, intrusive installing bridge,common adobe files,etc. and the worst is that it only got a few improvements, (200MB) 25MB for the program and 175MB for ADOBE itself, and so on, etc, I really tried to get used to it , really, because I was interested with coolpro, but I simply lost interest
I ask myself how much benefit is going to bring Dreamweaver CS3..(I mean macromedia CS3) compared to the last release. surely it will increase it's size.. he

anyway this is my point of view, wiht the same right as anyone to express it.

las thing is that flash is clumsy not because of the technology it represents, but because it generates too much trouble in the internet, for example: browser crashes, SEO problems, general incompatibility with internet, plugin dependand, but the worst is that people uses that to create attractive interfaces, most of the time nice but contentless webpages, that and several things more, makes it clumsy to me. I like it a lot for animation though

there was a time if I remember correctly when flash and shockwave were rivals somehow,at least in someway. but flash is easier to learn and loads faster, it became popular.. macromedia saw that and almost abandoned shockwave.. flash gives much more profit.

apologies for my english it's not my native language

86point5
04-26-2007, 12:31 PM
Maybe one day that 0.1% of the creative profession is going to convince Adobe to move to Linux. Most graphics professionals - illustrators, artists, designers - wouldn't touch linux. I use linux for server-side work (tomcat primarily, web-enabled applications), and 3d (rendering/animation). I'd never use Linux for general design work. I don't believe Adobe will ever port their creative suite to it. There's no market for it.

That's somewhat self-fulfilling. Any graphic artists that would like to switch to Linux can't do it because the Adobe apps aren't there. So it's not like a large artist community can build up first for Adobe to move to support. I think Adobe has been hesitant in the past so as not to annoy the two bread-and-butter OS builders (MS and Apple) ... but with those two continually coming out with products that compete with the Adobe offerings, I think it would be a good way for them to show their self-reliance. So, there's no current large graphic artist market on Linux, Adobe would actually create that market (starting with me).

inguatu
04-26-2007, 02:09 PM
So, there's no current large graphic artist market on Linux, Adobe would actually create that market (starting with me).

You're assuming too much. It's not as easy as the "build it and they will come" standard. I wouldn't want Adobe to potentially waste millions of development dollars just to play in the kiddie pool, seeing if a mass exodus would happen. Sure, people love to talk big and claim they'd switch instantly to Linux because of Adobe, but again, that's an assumption. I'd rather see Adobe continue to solidify their products on their 2 current platforms. It would be interesting to see if Premiere would ever get to compete on a higher level with FCP or Avid. I wouldn't mind seeing Adobe come out with more nodal stuff in AFX (a la shake or fusion). I'd rather see development bucks go that route than testing out a Linux port.

gent_k
05-10-2007, 11:58 AM
Whatever happens, Silverlight in particular already looks extremely impressive. Much faster, responsive, and stable compared to Flash for comparable 'heavy' uses. I think its a big step forward for the advancement of web applications.

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