Archive for Adobe

Adobe Acquires EchoSign

Adobe Systems Incorporated announced that it has acquired EchoSign, a leading Web-based provider of electronic signatures and signature automation. EchoSign’s electronic signature solution will be a key component of Adobe’s document exchange services platform. The EchoSign solution will be integrated with other Adobe document services including SendNow for managed file transfer, FormsCentral for form creation and CreatePDF for online PDF creation. The EchoSign electronic signature solution automates the entire signature process from the request for signature to the distribution and execution of the form or agreement. The EchoSign service includes a rich set of APIs for incorporation with company-specific solutions to improve the process of sending, tracking and signing digital documents. EchoSign is based in Palo Alto, Calif. with a sales presence in the U.K. and Germany. The founders of EchoSign and all full-time employees will join Adobe.

Professional Edition of Adobe Digital Publishing Suite Available

Adobe Systems Incorporated announced the immediate availability of the Professional Edition of Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, a solution that includes hosted services and viewer technology that allow a spectrum of publishers to publish content to Android tablets, BlackBerry PlayBook and Apple iPad. Aimed at publishing houses, business publishers, and education institutions that require an off-the-shelf tablet publishing solution, the Professional Edition taps the huge interest in digital publishing across a range of industries.

Adobe Delivers Technical Communication Suite 3

Adobe Systems Incorporated announced Adobe Technical Communication Suite 3, the latest version of its single-source authoring and multi-device publishing toolkit for the creation and publication of standards-compliant technical information and training material. The new improved version of Adobe’s suite enables technical writers, help authors and instructional designers to author, enrich, manage, and publish content to multiple channels and devices. Adobe also introduced new versions of the suite’s core components: Adobe FrameMaker 10, a template-based authoring and publishing solution for technical content; and Adobe RoboHelp 9, an HTML and XML help, policy and knowledgebase authoring and publishing solution. Adobe Photoshop CS5, Adobe Captivate 5 and Adobe Acrobat X Pro round out the suite, integrating image editing, eLearning and demo creation, and dynamic PDF functionalities. New Features  in Technical Communication Suite 3: Import FrameMaker content into RoboHelp with support for FrameMaker books. Directly link DITA (Darwin Information Typing Architecture) maps, automatically convert table and list styles, and publish multiple RoboHelp outputs from within the native authoring environment. Dynamic “single-click” publishing: Create standards-compliant XML and DITA (1.2) content and output to multiple formats, including print, PDF, Adobe AIR, WebHelp, EPUB, XML and HTML, and deliver it to a wide range of mobile devices, such as eReaders, smartphones and tablets. Lend your content to search engine optimization, via enhanced metadata tagging of published content. Expanded multimedia capabilities: Take advantage of more than 45 video and audio formats and engage audiences by adding 3D models, training demos and simulations. FrameMaker 10 Standards support: Take advantage of significantly enhanced XML/DITA authoring capabilities of FrameMaker 10, which is an early adopter of industry standards including DITA 1.2. Usability enhancements: Work with standards-compliant, prebuilt tools and templates designed for easier authoring. Use utilities like Auto Spell Check, Highlight Support, scrolling for lengthy dialogue, and enhanced Find and Replace. Content Management System (CMS) connectors: Integrate seamlessly with leading content management systems, including Documentum and MS SharePoint, included in FrameMaker 10 at no additional cost. The new offering enables enterprises to better streamline publishing workflows while reducing localization costs by leveraging the enhanced SDL Author Assistant in FrameMaker 10. Users can also automatically schedule and publish content to multiple channels and screens, and gain analytical insights into content usage for effective optimization.

Adobe Releases Digital Publishing Suite

Adobe has released a series of tools designed to expedite digital publishing across various platforms. Digital Publishing Suite allows publishers to upload articles directly from InDesign CS5, and supports PDF and HTML5. The software can run on RIM’s PlayBook, Samsung’s Galaxy Tab, Apple’s iPad and forthcoming Android platforms. The software allows dynamic user control of online publications, and readers are able to resize pages and move content around to suit their needs. Graphics, video and audio content can be built into the publications. The full version of Digital Publishing Suite will be available next year for a $699 licence fee, but beta code is now available from Adobe.

Adobe to Acquire Omniture

Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) and Omniture, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMTR) announced the two companies have entered into a definitive agreement for Adobe to acquire Omniture in a transaction valued at approximately $1.8 billion on a fully diluted equity-value basis. Under the terms of the agreement, Adobe will commence a tender offer to acquire all of the outstanding common stock of Omniture for $21.50 per share in cash. By combining Adobe’s content creation tools and clients with Omniture’s Web analytics, measurement and optimization technologies Adobe will deliver solutions intended to enhance engaging experiences and e-commerce across all digital content, platforms and devices. For designers, developers and online marketers, an integrated workflow, with optimization capabilities embedded in the creation tools, will streamline the creation and delivery of relevant content and applications. This optimization will help advertisers and advertising agencies, publishers, and e-tailers to realize greater ROI from their digital media investments and improve their end users’ experiences.

RSuite CMS Releases Adobe CS3 Connector

RSuite CMS now offers a CS3 Connector for InCopy users. The integration with Adobe’s CS3 enables InCopy users the ability to browse and open XML or InCopy documents in RSuite directly from the Adobe application. The RSuite CS3 Connector allows users to manage their content as XML within RSuite and to create a transformation to and from their own XML content model to the native XML file format of InCopy. This will help publishers who want to manage their content as XML throughout its life-cycle but also want to use the Adobe tools in their editorial and production process. Users can also store and develop workflows around InCopy and InDesign documents in RSuite.

Acrobat Still Suffering from Schizophrenia

On Monday, in the wee hours of the night (my email was sent at 12:27 a.m.) Adobe emitted three short press releases announcing Acrobat 8. I’m a fan of Acrobat and PDF, so I always look forward to new versions of this ungainly but hugely-popular product. Sadly release #8, at first look-see, leaves me thoroughly unmoved.

The main press release captures the excitement behind the announcement: “The Acrobat 8 product line introduces several major innovations in the areas of document collaboration, PDF content reuse, PDF forms, packaging of multiple documents, and controlling sensitive information. For example, shared reviews put collaboration within the reach of virtually anyone with access to a shared network folder and Adobe Reader2. A participant in a shared review can see comments posted by others, track the status of the review, and work even when not connected – reducing duplicated work and enabling large groups to collaborate more efficiently. Acrobat 8 also enables PDF content to be exported into popular formats to enable reuse and repurposing of content.”

Most of these “innovations” are just “new and improved” old features.

If you’re looking for news, press release #2 is where to turn. Macromedia Breeze is now called Acrobat Connect, and will be available at a lower price-point and to smaller groups of users than the old not-so-gentle Breeze. This represents the first fruit of Adobe’s $3.4 billion acquisition of Macromedia. How do ya like them apples?
Press release #3 reveals that Adobe will continue to nurse Acrobat and PDF through its severe case of schizophrenia. Acrobat 8 ($449 by itself) will also be bundled into the awkwardly named Adobe Creative Suite 2.3 Premium edition ($1199). This is “to enable creative and print professionals to efficiently create, collaborate with, and automate output of Adobe PDF files.”

A few years back, Adobe came close to abandoning this group of PDF enthusiasts (and major buyers of Creative Suite). It realized the gross error of its ways at the 11th hour, and now makes sure to invite them for tea each time there’s something new happening with Acrobat. The features that appeal to “creative and print professionals” bear little resemblance to the features that appeal to the “knowledge workers,” who remain the big buyers of Acrobat itself. So while each group is told a slightly different story, Acrobat’s schizophrenia has not blocked its ever-growing popularity.

Also in press release #3 we find the second instance of the fruit-bearing acquisition. Not surprisingly, Adobe has decided to jettison the never-very-successful GoLive out of Creative Suite in favor of the incredibly successful Dreamweaver. Saving face, somewhat unconvincingly, we’re informed that “Adobe will continue to develop GoLive as a standalone product.” Right. That’s until Adobe finishes getting a little cash off the GoLive orphans as they make the switch (“upgrade”) to Dreamweaver.

The word on the street is that Creative Suite itself will be upgraded to V3 by early next year. Perhaps then the flaccid features of Acrobat 8 will start to make more sense. Or maybe some knowledge workers will acquire some knowledge, enough to tell us why this upgrade was released.

Adobe releases Acrobat 4.0

Adobe Systems Inc. announced the latest version of Acrobat. Acrobat 4.0 adds a new set of annotation and security tools for transforming and conveying documents written in different formats. The new Adobe PDFMaker utility also lets users convert Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files from within those applications. Acrobat 4.0 captures Web pages or entire Web sites and turns them into fully formatted PDF files. The application also can secure files through a certificate system that validates users’ identities. 4.0 will ship in the second half of the year, at $249. Users can upgrade from earlier versions for $99.