Sachin Sharma
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Only a Sith deals in absolutes. I will do what I must.
- Obi Wan Kanobi
- StarWars III - Revenge of the Sith


Big fish eats small fish

Some time back, there was a product called Camstudio by Rendersoft Software. I used it occasionally for recording video off my desktop. Soon, I learnt that eHelp Corporation, the authors of RoboDemo and RoboHelp, acquired Camstudio. They branded Camstudio and started giving it out free. I had not become accustomed to this when I heard that Macromedia acquired eHelp and stopped distributing Camstudio. Now, Adobe acquires Macromedia.

When I first heard this, I just could not believe it. I had to fire up Google and read this FAQ before I got convinced. Yes, this is going ahead. Adobe has bought all the stocks of Macromedia. Macromedia stockholders will own 18% of the combined company. The 4000 employee strong Adobe profited by $1.6 billion in the last fiscal year. Macromedia on the other hand had a $422 million profit in the last calendar here. The two companies will eventually align behind Adobe Systems Incorporated.

Adobe has been great at producing stand-alone applications but Macromedia was a forerunner of distributed applications and web. Well, now Adobe has the best of both the worlds and they have PDF as well as Flash. That makes them a formidable force in the industry. This sounds quite logical.

In understanding the motive behind this, I realized that they have a real threat to face from Microsoft. Microsoft’s next generation operating system LongHorn seems very promising. Due in late 2006, LongHorn’s graphic subsystem “Avalon” is vector based. Yes, this is a true competitor to Macromedia’s Flash technology. With “Avalon” in, Macromedia Flash’s future will be in serious jeopardy. Do you remember Netscape?

Not only that, Microsoft is developing “Metro”. This is a PostScript printing technology. You will soon see Metro enabled printers doing as good a job. Now that is some thoughtful encroaching on Adobe PDF’s turf. Therefore, Adobe’s acquisition of Macromedia is a preemptive strike on Microsoft. With at least a year for Microsoft to unleash its full power, Adobe seems to have a definitive advantage.

To learn everything about Microsoft’s future initiatives in a moment, view Bill Gates Keynote from WinHEC 2005.
Friday, June 17, 2005 at 9:22 PM. Comments: 0.
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