Adobe to give away Photoshop

EULA go home
I think I read at most two words of any user licence agreement. They are generally “I agree.” Anything else that else that enters my vision does so peripherally. So it’s with a smattering of applause that I salute Adobe for moving its apps online. A smattering because it hasn’t actually done this yet but applause because it would get rid of the current user licence model because the apps would be offered for free. That means free Illustrator and free Photoshop (yay). Of course, nothing is truly free in the software world. (Not even open source. No, seriously.)

The “free” versions will come with annoying ads, but a low fee subscription-based version will be available without such hindrances. I must admit, I’m having a hard time coming up with reasons as to why this might be a bad idea. Could be bandwidth issues, I guess. But ultimately, Adobe is doing what they and other software companies should have done a long time ago.

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Vista: please, please just stop it
I’ve bashed Vista a number of times in this space. Mostly because it sucks. But also because lots of people post negative things online about Microsoft and when you spend your afternoons looking for tech news online, you find a lot. This latest is from respected Microsoft blogger Mary Jo Foley. She takes exception to the fact that Microsoft has posted a Top 100 Reasons Why Everyone’s so Speechless. I’m not speechless because I get paid not to be. Other people might be speechless because they can’t believe Microsoft has sunk so low. Foley, like me, is paid to express herself, so here are her thoughts:

The new site lists 100 reasons users should take a closer look at Windows Vista. No. 1 is “It makes using your PC a breeze.” No. 100 is “Because your network is the backbone of your business (Network Diagnostics and Troubleshooting).”

“Seeing Windows Vista for the first time may leave you searching for words. Many people just say ‘Wow.’ Here are 100 reasons why,” the site says.

When Microsoft launched Windows Vista in January, execs knew they needed a succinct way to explain why users should upgrade to the new OS. Not a list of 50 reasons. But something that would roll off the tongue of salesclerks and PC makers in a 30-second pitch.

For a while, Microsoft tried bucketing Vista’s new features into three “C’s”: Clear, Confident and Connected. When asked for just one reason why users should upgrade, company execs, for a while, were emphasizing security.

But now Microsoft’s taken a step backwards and done not a Top 5 or Top 10 list, but a Top 100. Sure, it’s tempting with Apple running around claiming Leopard will have 300 new features, to go for bigger numbers. But sometimes less is more.

And here are my thoughts: Good grief, Microsoft, we know you’re capable of much more than this. For goodness sake, get a new marketing department.

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Fake Steve Jobs still faking it
As is my wont, every time I bash Microsoft, I try to find something equally negative about Apple. Well, I can’t really do that because people just don’t have the same level of vehemence for that company, but I did find this piece about Fake Steve Jobs, a.k.a. Forbes magazine reporter Dan Lyons, who copped to being the occasionally hilarious character recently. Lyons, who caused an anonymous stir in Silicon Valley by lampooning a man so egotistical he really didn’t have to do very much at all in the way of parody, is interviewed here about his book on the subject.

A snippet:
And the Valley gave you something to laugh at?
The Valley is just so twisted. You go to a dinner party at someone’s house and they just talk about tech all day long and what Google’s gonna do. It’s so weird to me and so ripe for parody. I want to do another book after this that goes after some other stuff out there.

Your Web traffic peaked around the time of your outing. You’re still blogging. Have you seen a dip in traffic?
I did see a dip in September, but I’m not sure it was because of the outing. June and July were really big. I suddenly had 1.3 million page views both those months. August, because of the outing, I did 1.8. September it was down to 1 million. I don’t know if that’s because people are saying, “Well, now we know who it is.” But there are lots of people who had never heard of it before that just started reading.

Have you heard from the real Steve Jobs yet?
No. I don’t think I ever will.

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