Will Apple Dominate the TV and Movie Industry?
This morning’s big news is that Macromedia is being acquired by Adobe. Reading through the announcement, it is hard to say whether this will come to pass or not, as there are many monopoly issues surrounding this deal. Side by Side The biggest impact will probably be felt on the low end of the creative space. Here’s a rundown of the upcoming battles to come as a result of this acquisition (this is based on the product sheets on the Macromedia and the Adobe sites) and my predictions on who will win each: Vector Graphics: Freehand vs. Illustrator While Freehand got a nice following, I believe this one will end up with Illustrator winning, largely due to its installed base. Expect the Flash integration to come into future versions of Illustrator and the Freehand platform to be de-emphasized Digital Imaging: Photoshop vs. Fireworks Once again, advantage Adobe, largely due to the larger feature set and the widespread development community that has brought extensions to it. However, expect the optimize for web section of the program to improve as these will be worked on by the old Fireworks team. Web Authoring: Dreamweaver vs. GoLive Advantage Macromedia. While GoLive is a nice…Read More
George Hotelling is attempting an interesting experiment for the digital age: reselling a song bought on the iTunes music store. The reason it is interesting is that he has checked the license agreement and it seems perfectly OK for him to transfer a file to someone else. This will be an interesting test of whether Apple actually means what it says when it mentions that songs in the iTunes Music Store are bought and not rented. They made a big deal about this when they first introduced the store so it will be fascinating to see how they react to this sale. Extending beyond Apple, this definitely falls into the “Pushing the Envelope” category as it is one of the first case of reselling a legally purchased digital good and reselling it. It will be fascinating to see what the reaction is going to be.Read More
I’ve been getting considerable amounts of email from mac fanatics about yesterday’s piece on the new Apple music store. As a result, I’d like to expand on the subject (as I have to a few people via email today). The problem that I have is not with Apple in particular but with the approach they are taking. At the current time, MP3 is the closest thing there is to a standard for sound on the Internet. To offer something that deviates is no a problem as long as that something is an open standard that can be implemented on other platforms by other people. With the choice of AAC as the new standard, Apple is going the proprietary route and that’s what I disagree with. There are other standards out there that offer better compression than MP3 (Ogg Vorbis, for example, seems to be a good alternative and happens to be an open format. So while Apple is selling the “better compression, smaller size” gospel, its only interest in AAC is that it allows for them to lock things down for now as AAC is only supported in Quicktime and iTunes, two products offered by Apple. Also not touted in…Read More
CIO magazine is running an interesting article showcasing efforts by several companies to use a more modular approach when building new EAI applications. Based on what the article is saying, it looks like we are now reaching a point where going with a single vendor for your complete solution is no longer the preferable choice. The rise of web services as the glue between different system could drastically reshape how large scale applications are built. his has an impact on anyone who’s currently involved in application development as it heralds a new age of modularization. If the trend holds, we will increasingly see extremely specific application modules being developed instead of one-size-fits-all software. That, in turn, might erode the profit margins of software development companies as they will be unable to sell features that the customer does not want. As this more distributed model evolves and services become less and less dependent on the underlying operating system, what will happen to companies like Microsoft, who tie things very closely with their operating system? It seems to me that the software world is about the experience the kind of breaking point the music industry has experienced with the rise of Napster.…Read More
With Linux becoming a strong alternative to Microsoft’s operating system, some members of the open source community are setting their sights on a new target: the music industry. The group has introduced a new sound format called Ogg Vorbis, which promises to deliver better sound quality or smaller digital music files than the popular MP3 file format. Ogg Vorbis is a fully open, non-proprietary, patent-and-royalty-free, general-purpose compressed audio format for high quality (44.1-48.0kHz, 16+ bit, polyphonic) audio and music at fixed and variable bitrates from 16 to 128 kbps per channel according to a statement on the official Ogg Vorbis site. MP3 was designed by committees so it ended up with a bunch of useless junk in it says Jack Moffitt, project manager on Ogg Vorbis. Because we designed Vorbis from the ground up, we have streamlined a lot of the technology and created better algorithms for encoding and decoding. The new format, which uses the extension .OGG, was developed as an alternative to MP3 and already has a long history. Seven years ago, Chris Montgomery, now one of the leaders on the Ogg Vorbis project, wanted to burn his CD collection to his computer. However, the hard drive he…Read More