Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Popping that Paradigm Clutch

I do not use Adobe’s Creative Suite software – but my wife does. Heavily, At least InDesign, with a desire there in the future to possibly dabble in Photoshop. We have, I think, CS5, and it seems to work well (again, I don’t know; I don’t use the thing).

So it remains to be seen if Adobe’s announcement that they’re going from software as product to software as service by making future iterations of their programs available only through their cloud service will have a profound effect on us. But the seemingly unstoppable move to cloud computing services requiring always-on internet connections is going to have an effect on us whether we like it or not.

That popping sound you hear is a bunch of paradigms shifting without a clutch.

I’m not sure this is all bad. I suppose as long as the service works as advertised – and the always on connection is already a reality at our house, so no problems there – and as long as the cost point isn’t prohibitive (it appears they’ll let owners of CS 3 through 6 use the cloud service for $10 a month for the first year) this could be a good thing, a thing perhaps taken for granted in another five or ten years.

There could be distinct advantages. If they can figure out how to run the applications on their servers rather than our home computers, maybe we won’t have lag time. Or, well, possible lag time of a different sort, I suppose, as computer processing speeds are replaced as the bottleneck by internet speeds and bandwidth use.

It seems like something you’d want to fight against. But I remember fighting against the ungodly trend of PCs without floppy drives. Now, I have to wonder, why were floppy drives so great? A memory stick is a heck of a lot easier, and capable of storing a heck of a lot more information.

Then there’s this position: We don’t see paradigms shifting a whole heck of a lot from software iteration to iteration. The software doesn’t change much, version to version. There are tweaks, but no enormous kabooms. Unless you talk operating systems. Our current Adobe products won’t work with Windows 8, for some unfathomable reason. So my wife is holding off upgrading her two Windows 7 computers for that very reason. No great loss, because Windows 8 is not a paradigm shift either. But when the hardware wears out, we have to make the shift. Though I confess our XP-only internet router doesn’t seem to notice that it’s running on a Windows 7 machine. So maybe things aren’t all that bad.

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