In their formal, none-too-readable-by-humans announcement about acquiring Macromedia, Adobe makes specific mention of “the complementary functionality of PDF and Flash”.
What’s that supposed to mean, do you think?
After all, for most people, PDF and Flash are two very different things, used in very different situations.
Most people think of PDF as a format for printed documents (that’s if they think of PDF at all). The same people probably consider Flash a means of making web pages a little more animated. Of course both formats offer considerably more than just that, but those are the broadly accepted consumer views.
Where’s the complementary functionality, then?
It’s hard to think of it in terms of “PDF and Flash” as specified in that announcement. Easier, I think, to consider the acquisition in terms of complemantary business plans.
Both Adobe’s and Macromedia’s products (and each one sells several different products, much more than just PDF or Flash) are about creativity, about content.
As the global content industry changes shape, wrapping itself around the requirements of digital creation, publication and distribution, the opportunities for commercial gain in those areas are growing. Adobe was already in an excellent position in several areas such as print and online publishing, or digital imaging.
Macromedia’s authoring and interactive media tools (Studio, Dreamweaver, Flash, Fireworks, Contribute, Director, ColdFusion - it’s quite a list when you stop to think about it) gives Adobe a nice wide range of products for future development. More eggs, in more baskets; a wise move, even if, at 3.4 billion dollars, it sounds to us mere mortals like a very expensive one.
What’s your take on Adobe’s move?