The Fat Lady Hit Her Final Note <br />(or, we loved you macromedia, good bye…)

by Stephanie Rewis on December 5, 2005

Most of you likely heard the news about the close of the Macromedia acquisition over the weekend. And this morning there's a new site in place of the old Macromedia site. Honestly, it gave me an odd feeling in the pit of my stomach this morning.

The lists I frequent are abuzz with concerns, excitment and confusion. And thankfully, it seems Adobe engineers are trying to be proactive and answer what they can. So far, this is what I've culled out of the discussions and my reading (in no particular order):

  • For now, the products will be sold under the Adobe Company name, but will have Macromedia appended on the front. ie: Macromedia Dreamweaver
  • Any changes and/or integration will be in the next product release cycle (Approximately 12-18 months).
  • At this time, all products from both companies will continue to be sold.
  • Some Macromedia developers have proclaimed their happiness at finally being able to "come out of the closet" about their Adobe product usage habit. (I've been known to open Photoshop from time to time — usually related to photo optimization. But Fireworks is my very favorite web vector program and I've got my fingers crossed for it still.)
  • If you happen to be an Adobe CS user as well as a Macromedia Studio user, you can upgrade both packages as one combined "Adobe Web Bundle" at a discounted rate over what they would cost separately. It's $1899 — but let's face it, that's a lot of products.
  • Adobe will continue to maintain and run "all websites, tutorials, forums and other resources formerly run separately by Macromedia and Adobe."
  • Many developers are unimpressed with the new Flash banner and tagline, "Revolutionizing how the world engages with ideas and information."
  • Lynn Grillo (Application Engineer for Adobe) is an Italian from New Jersey and is not a quiet person. ;)

There's an informative FAQ on the Adobe site with more information and links.

I have hope for the future of my favorite products (and friends), but it's still a sad empty feeling to watch the changes as they happen. It's like when your best friend is moving out of state. You watch them pack up the truck and you're not sure when/if you'll ever see them again. I realize Macromedia still exists on some level — enveloped within the larger Adobe corporation — but I don't know if I'll have the same contact and connection I've enjoyed over the past few years.

Goodbye Macromedia, my friend. I'll miss you.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Mad Certified Flash Developer And Designer December 5, 2005 at 2:56 pm

I found a huge error on the new ‘Adobized’ Macromedia site this morning. I wanted to make sure that the link hadn’t changed where you send clients/employers to verify that you are certified as you claim to be. If it changed, I would update my stuff. Anyway, the certified developer verification list page is unusable to look up anyone who is a DW 2004 developer, Flash 2004 developer or designer, or a CF 7 advanced or regular developer, or a regular CF 6 developer. So, if you are certified in any of those categories, potentila employers and clients will be unable to look you up at all.

This page loads okay:

but when you scroll down and click ‘verify professional certification’

the page that loads is garbage.

The style sheet or something loads on top of the content (and looks a mess) and doesn’t let you select anything above the bottom few certs (the old depreciated ones). I attempted to call a few people I knew at MM that deal with this area, but their extenstions are now changed. I attempted to contact customer service at both Adobe and MM. I had to leave messages at one, and the other acknowledged the problem and said ‘I can’t put in an error ticket for that as we aren’t set up for it yet’ so they had no idea who I should tell and if/when it would get fixed. If anyone reading this who knows someone who could fix it, please tell them. Thanks.

Mad Certified Flash Developer And Designer December 5, 2005 at 3:10 pm

Forgot to add that this was on Safari (with latest updates) and FireFox (for latest updates). Also, I was told by someone else that it seemed to load on their IE but others using IE said they didn’t even get what I got. Some said they got a ‘file not found’ error.

Jim Babbage December 6, 2005 at 12:11 am

I know what you mean, Steph. I do use Photoshop quite a lot for hi res photos, but when the sign on the door changed this morning, I felt like I had lost an old friend. Not one I always agreed with, mind you, but a friend just the same.

I discovered Macromedia and Dreamweaver/Fireworks when I became frustrated with some – admittedly very old, now – web applications from Adobe.

From the first page I built with DW, I never looked back. Learning to use Fireworks in version 1 was a real eye opener, as I had only ever used Photoshop prior to finding FW. But once I got the hang of it, I began using it exclusively for my web and screen based graphics needs. It’s my sincere hope that I can continue to use FW – and updated versions of this excellent app – as Adobe takes control of the ship.

That said, Photoshop has always had some features I felt were sorely lacking *cough* File Browser, filters *cough* in FW. Maybe now, we’ll see the two apps tied together and used for their own strengths, with the backing, encouragement and support of Adobe.

Here’s hoping . .

Terry Patterson December 6, 2005 at 3:54 am

Hi Stephanie,

I share your feeling of loss too. This morning, after I saw the Adobe logo at the top on macromedia’s site, I rushed over to the Coldfusion developers journal to see what the word was on Adobe’s CF support. I was relieved to find out that Ben Forta joined Adobe and has a very positive outlook. Hello Flex? I have been deliberating about learning java or C# to work with .net. I guess I need to make a decision while I still ride the wave with Coldfusion and have fun with the beautiful CSS layouts.

Dave December 8, 2005 at 2:21 am

I’ve worked with Adobe’s products in a corporate environment, and have met their “static wall” of support again and again. It started with Adobe Acrobat 5, then 6, then we jumped to Illustrator, but we could not get the formentioned to run on a Windows XP OS (on brand new DELL hardware). Then we switched to an Apple, and all seemed to work except when we called for Apple support to help us with fitting the one red headed step child into a Windows network. Know what their response was…contact Microsoft. We had several cases where it was a Mac issue, but they would not provide “network” support. Why the rub on Apple on an Adobe post? Because the support has been as bad as Apple.

Now for the positive. The top three for tech support at our company is…Microsoft (at $250 it’s worth it speaking to someone you can understand who knows how to help you!), Macromedia (the best customer focused company I’ve had the privilege of being a customer of!), and Cisco. However, both Cisco and an unmentioned DELL are rapidly slipping in quality so I doubt they’ll make this list in 2007.

Ken Friedman December 8, 2005 at 8:33 am

Adobe will hurt Macromedia with the same unfriendly holier-than-thou, flash-you-the-finger attitude, behavior and customer relations it has applied to its own products. Its products may be high quality, but many are memory hogs and and Adobe don’t play well with others (software). Plus, Adobe drives up the price of its products so that private individuals can’t afford the originals or the high-priced upgrades that don’t improve all that much. Adobe has no idea of the meaning of public and customer relations.

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