So Microsoft ISN’T buying Adobe?


Remember all that obsessive hubub and media speculation regarding Microsoft's potential awkward marriage to Adobe? It seems their CEO has (or rather had) other ideas. Warning, two digressions in this post.

"Adobe’s growth prospects are so great that our focus is on seizing these opportunities as an independent company," Adobe Chief Executive Shantanu Narayen was quoted as saying by daily Financial Times Deutschland on Monday.

So what did the two heavyweights have to meet up about? If this Reuters report is to be believed… they were discussing software compatibility as so many people from tech companies regularly do.

Ship, meet people jumping

There was a bit of a pun there. People who eat lots of meat are probably very heavy. But I digress. Did the Adobe CEO just admit that the media worked itself up into a gigantic frenzy for nothing? How could anyone EVER assume the tech media would be capable of such a thing?! It boggles the mind! Of course this could also just be an elaborate smokescreen, which would make more sense owing to the fact Adobe Premiere may be able to be used to generate such effects. I'm more inclined to believe the former for now.

While the rest of the tech community was foaming at the mouth at the idea of Midobe or Adobesoft or some other silly combination of words (like Ruben and Nerd, how patently ridiculous is that?), I never thought it made much sense. They have largely different portfolios of software, but enough overlap to cause problems. Microsoft has far too much pride to discontinue software like Silverlight despite the fact nobody in the real world uses or cares about it, and it would make sense for them to do so in place of Flash.

The Adobe website telling me I need Flash, even though they don't make it for that OS!

As an aside, this screenshot of Patented FreeBSD Flash Fail was taken around Christmas 2007 for this post about Adobe Air. I've never really watched any Type-Moon anime but I really like their art style. This was also before KDE 4 came out and broke my heart. KDE 3 was epic. But I digress, again.

Everybody is entitled to my opinion

At least all this Microsoft and Adobe whatnot is just my opinion, but then again I don't really use either of their companies products other than Air (for TweetDeck) and Visio. I also didn't think it made sense to discontinue PageMaker either, or to have Adobe buy Macromedia. Heck I'm just skeptical about mergers full stop, the only super successful one I can think of off the top of my head was Apple buying NeXT, and that only worked because the nimbler and infinitely more talented NeXT team took the reigns.

HP, Microsoft, Adobe… I'd bet a gigantic sushi train dinner they'd never let a smaller company dictate terms to them, to say nothing of being essentially run by the companies they buy. Can you imagine Steve Ballmer giving up the top job for Shantanu Narayen? Then again given Microsoft's decade long stagnant stock price, maybe its time for a change anyway.

Aside from everything else, Microsoft Photoshop is simply a terrifying thought.

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Ruben Schade is a technical writer and infrastructure architect in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person. Hi!

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