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Re: The Creative Cloud Divide

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David Lawrence
Re: The Creative Cloud Divide
on May 10, 2013 at 11:45:10 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "If CC was $20/mo indefinitely, would it ease the transition?"

Ease? Maybe, but it doesn't address the main issue.

[Jeremy Garchow] "With all due respect, defeatist is a strong word."

Compared to GTFO? Really? ;)

[Jeremy Garchow] "It just seems that CC isn't it worth it to you. If it isn't worth it, why waste time on it?"

The software is totally worth it to me. My problem is with Adobe's radical new business model.

[Jeremy Garchow] "I would like to hear more. Please explain."

Sure. I have a pretty long view on the digital revolution. I wrote my first program in grade school in the 60's. It was a simple Fortran loop that output a picture in ascii characters to a line printer. I programmed it with punchcards and it ran on a mainframe.

I remember seeing a demo of the IMSAI 8080 at a homebrew club. How the guys described hand loading BASIC by flipping the toggle switches on the front. I was fascinated.

I read Ted Nelson's "Computer Lib/Dream Machines" and dreamed of world of infinite creative possibility through digital media.

Back then, the only way to access to real computing power was on a mainframe.

What inspired guys like Woz and Jobs?

It was the idea that instead of renting time on a mainframe, you could buy your very own computer. A "bicycle for the mind". A consciousness amplifier. A personal computer.

The rest is history, right?

I bought my first computer, an Apple//e in college and learned everything I could about it, programming in assembly language and building custom hardware I/O to make art. It became my medium instead of painting or sculpture. One of the reasons Lucasfilm was interested in me was because my degree was in art, not computer science.

I still have that //e, btw. And it still runs everything.

So this is where I'm coming from.

Personal computers transformed industries and society by enabling the individual to own means of production that previously were completely controlled by centralized powers. You buy a computer, you buy the software, and you do whatever you want with the system because it's your system.

Software rental flies in the face of this notion. Once again, the central powers want to own the key part of the system and rent it back to you. It's ironic that Adobe - the company that single-handedly transformed the publishing and pre-press industries by making the means of production own-able by anyone - are leading the charge back to the old days when you had no choice but to rent.

Even Microsoft thinks it's too early for such a seismic shift:
http://bit.ly/12jQoRy

Computers are useless without software. If you don't own the software, you don't really own the system.

While the argument that you never really "own" software may be technically true, in practice, ownership is recognized, even by Adobe. For example:

http://helpx.adobe.com/x-productkb/policy-pricing/transfer-product-license....

If you don't own it, why do they let you resell it?

I want to use the best, industry-standard content creation tools available. I believe Adobe continues to make these tools, just as they have for decades. I want to pay them for those tools. After I've paid a fair fixed price, I want to be able to use them as I please without them going poof. I don't think that's an unreasonable request. From the many hundreds of comments I've read online all over the net, I'd say 90% of the people commenting seem to agree.

Adobe has many options for a win-win. We know their engineering teams listen to their customers. Now we get to see if management does as well.

Do you own a laptop? Or a personal computer? If so, why did you buy it instead of leasing it? Software is no different.

I know you like to say it's all about the money. While that may be true for you, it's simply not true for everyone. For some of us, there are much bigger issues at play here.

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David Lawrence
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