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MS Unveils Beta of New Image Editing Program

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the another-market-to-conquer dept.

Microsoft 492

docdude316 writes "CNET is running a story about Microsoft's new photo editing software, Acrylic. The new program is based on Expression, which Microsoft purchased in 2003. From the article: 'Microsoft describes the software--currently available as a 77MB free download--as bringing together pixel-based painting and vector graphics features. These capabilities will put the product squarely in the market currently dominated by software maker Adobe Systems with its pixel-focused Photoshop and vector-driven Illustrator products. Acrylic appears to support opening and exporting to Photoshop and Illustrator file formats, as well as other standard graphics formats. In addition, the application appears to be able to export to Adobe's Portable Document Format, or PDF.'

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M$ is really on a tear today... (3, Funny)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782019)


<sarcasm>
First a music subscription service [slashdot.org] , and now this...M$ is a vertiable fountain of innovation.
<sarcasm>

Damnit, Microsoft! You're like that kid on the playground who always wanted someone else's toy, just because someone else had them.
If you don't quit bullying the other kids, Microsoft, no one is going to want to play with you.

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (0)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782065)

It's more like they're playing "catch up" again, or at least trying to. If they keep going, MS will end up as a jack of all trades: master of none. If they're not already at that point, that is.

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782105)

As opposed to all the other megacorps like Sony, Toshiba, and Mitsubishi. They push shit on people every day too, and it's certainly working for them. Someone needs to provide for the mainstream.

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782154)

The "main stream" dosn't really need a profesioal quality graphics package, if they want one, there's paint shop pro which does most things well, or GIMP, which is free, as well as being of good quality.

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (0, Flamebait)

pmazer (813537) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782220)

Does anyone else think it's amazing that MS looks down upon people who try to backward engineer their file formats such as Word Documents and then go and put in support for Adobe's formats in their products?

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (3, Funny)

Adrilla (830520) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782277)

If they keep going, MS will end up as a jack of all trades

don't you mean jackin' [urbandictionary.com] all trades?

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (0, Troll)

SoulMaster (717007) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782119)

Mostly,

M$ is the rich kid who when he CAN'T play with someone else's toy, he goes out, buy's thier company (or one very similar), creates what he believes is a better toy, then pulls out its gun and attempts to murderize the other kid.

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782147)

You mean like how Gimp copies Photoshop? etc, etc?

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (2, Funny)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782208)


<sarcasm>

Yeah...you're absolutely right...I wonder how they can keep charging for their product when it is such an obvious rip-off...

Oh wait...

</sarcasm>

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782160)

Hey, if they make a better product, more power to them. It's just going to be hard to do. First, Adobe products are more or less the industry standard, with a specific demographic with specific goals and interests.

What was telling about the linked article is that people are having such a bad reaction to it. Granted, we all know that Microsoft can operate on the scale of years when they want a market, but unveiling a poorly polished offering seems like a bad idea if they're aiming to capture the pro designer/artist market. These people just want to achieve their goals, and a bad first impression can drive them back to familiar territory pretty easily.

Then again, we're talking Microsoft here, so they can probably wait a long time. I'll be interested to see what future releases are like.

Erik

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (5, Interesting)

Juvenall (793526) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782270)

Taking one idea and using it yourself is a cornerstone of capitalism. So I don't understand why you're basing Microsoft for doing what every other business has done throughout human history. It's really like saying "Oh, don't buy a Ford because they didn't invent the car."

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (5, Insightful)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782279)

I thought the general concensus on this board is that competition of software products is a good thing which makes *all* the products better, or am I mistaken? (At least, that's the viewpoint people give when others complain about Linux having a whole bunch of different widget libraries and thousands of text editors.)

But as usual, it sums up as "if you don't like it, don't use it." Why insult Microsoft for making it? Why not think positively and stop being so cynical for once?

Sure, maybe it can't compete with Photoshop, ok. What about Photoshop Elements? What about Corel Painter? Maybe it'll help make ALL those products better by introducing a new interface idea or unique type of filter. Who knows?

Re:M$ is really on a tear today... (4, Insightful)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782304)

Damnit, Microsoft! You're like that kid on the playground who always wanted someone else's toy, just because someone else had them. If you don't quit bullying the other kids, Microsoft, no one is going to want to play with you.

Right! Because, before PhotoShop came along, no one had ever produced a paint program before...

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

Nice (5, Interesting)

daniil (775990) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782030)

I downloaded the beta yesterday and installed it on my home box. I must say that I was quite impressed, especially with the usability (especially when compared to Gimp). It was a bit slow on my 800 mhz Pentium III, though. Even though I doubt that Microsoft will conquer this market, it's still nice to finally see some real competition to Photoshop, especially considering that the price of Acrylic will be much lower than that of Photoshop.

Re:Nice (3, Informative)

computechnica (171054) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782078)

It's funny it requires Microsoft® Windows® XP with Service Pack 2. Sorry M$, GIMP and Photoshop run just fine on my WIN2k boxes.

Re:Nice (2, Insightful)

ncmusic (31531) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782311)

What's your point? Why Gimp requiresd GTK+ 2.4. Shame on M$ for requiring the newest version of their operating system for new software!

Re:Nice (1)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782079)


...it's still nice to finally see some real competition to Photoshop, especially considering that the price of Acrylic will be much lower than that of Photoshop.

Well, I doubt that Acrylic's price can beat the Gimp...

Seriously, though, what do you have against the Gimp? I'm impressed as hell every time I use it, and I'm a fairly heavy Photoshop user (although it is common knowledge that I do impress easily... :P )

Re:Nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782132)

Or do you mean that is it common knowledge that you are impressed easily?

Re:Nice (2, Funny)

ninja_assault_kitten (883141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782085)

Today Gimps functionality is equivalent to Word Perfect 1.0. It's a pretty pathetic, but you can still write documents.

Support Free Software!! (1)

Enoch Lockwood (889602) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782113)

What exactly is wrong with Gimp? Why would you want to buy crippled, proprietary software by a convicted monopolist instead of giving Gimp developers a few hints of what you'd like to see in the software. Or, even better yet, why won't you help in the development of the code like the rest of us do?

If you want to use software on your P-III shouldn't you be supporting Free Software instead?

Re:Support Free Software!! (3, Funny)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782169)


"convicted monopolist"...I love the sound of that.

Makes them sound like sex offenders somehow...

^_^

Re:Nice (2, Insightful)

TheOldFart (578597) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782126)


it's still nice to finally see some real competition to Photoshop

How can you call it real competition when the thing is being pushed, I mean, given for free? Doesn't this sound a bit like IE and every other market segment Microsoft crushes by baiting with free stuff?

Re:Nice (1)

Ubergrendle (531719) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782222)

Does anyone know if it support the various intricate RAW formats? If so, how current is its support?

Re:Nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782232)

Is Paint Shop Pro not real competition to PS? I've never used PS but from what I've heard PSP does just about anything PS can do.

Portable (3, Insightful)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782249)

it's still nice to finally see some real competition to Photoshop, especially considering that the price of Acrylic will be much lower than that of Photoshop.

True, if some competition brings the price of Photoshop down a few pegs then that would be nice. Still, one is left hoping that this isn't the beginnign of "Operation kill Adobe". Photoshop may be expensive but at least it is available on more platforms than just Windows.

Re:Portable (4, Insightful)

jimicus (737525) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782329)


Photoshop may be expensive

It is expensive. But it's not intended for Joe Bloggs cropping the crappy little images he makes with his £90 digital camera.

I will be very surprised if this has significant impact on Adobe's core market.

Oooh (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782032)

Another story about Microsoft all the Linux fans can crack jokes at...How original.

Re:Oooh (1)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782231)


Hey...we can't help it if M$ insists on supplying us with all this great material...

But the real question is (1, Funny)

Pinefresh (866806) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782037)

does it come with clippy?

I'm so sorry, but someone had to make the joke.

Re:But the real question is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782157)

does it come with clippy?
I'm so sorry, but someone had to make the joke.


Did I missed the joke?

Re:But the real question is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782299)

You're obviously VERY new here...:-)

What you probably meant was:

"...yes, but does it run on linux?..."

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782349)

...this is what MS uses to come up with those nice Blue Screens of Death...

Don't be silly. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782353)

does it come with clippy?

That's just plain silly. Of course not - this is for photo editing. It comes with Snappy (aka Clicky).

First Post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782038)

Surely not - Ive gotten a first post!

How does it compare to Paint Shop Pro? (1, Interesting)

theurge14 (820596) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782047)

Sorry, I'm at work and the IT Nazis won't let me try it out.

Re:How does it compare to Paint Shop Pro? (5, Funny)

halivar (535827) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782214)

Sorry, I'm at work and the IT Nazis won't let me try it out.

Dave, we need you to report to human resources before you leave today.

Thank you,
Bob Wyzygnoski
IT Coordinator

Adobemedia (3, Interesting)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782050)

So maybe there's something to the notion that Adobe bought Macromedia (who also have an hybrid vector/bitmap graphics program) as a defensive move against Microsoft.

Quality v. Quantity (1)

mushupork (819735) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782053)

Dunno...some companies focus on quality and reputation, others bombard the Best Buy shelves with bloatware. Since MS dominates I guess there's a sad lesson to be learned...?

Re:Quality v. Quantity (1)

XMyth (266414) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782188)

Microsoft employs enough developers to be able to focus on both, I believe.

Much more than most (any?) of their competitors.

Jumping to conclusions (4, Insightful)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782055)

Competing with Photoshop because it does vector and raster imaging? Isn't that like saying a Skoda is competing with a Porsche because they both have wheels and an engine?

Re:Jumping to conclusions (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782280)

Competing with Photoshop because it does vector and raster imaging? Isn't that like saying a Skoda is competing with a Porsche because they both have wheels and an engine?

And yet Skoda participates in racing as a manufacturer (rallying), while Porsche does not (they used to, and they're gearing up to get back into LMPs, but for the moment and for the past few years they haven't been in any racing series as a manufacturer). So yeah, if Porsche would get back into rally (they do have a long history of rally support, from the original 356 to 911 rally cars to the 959s that won Paris-Dakar back in the day, and the Cayenne-based VW Touareg has raced in at least one recent Paris-Dakar), they could conceivably compete with Skoda :)

Re:Jumping to conclusions (3, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782335)

Isn't that like saying a Skoda is competing with a Porsche because they both have wheels and an engine?

In the sense that a Skoda is not a Porsche, no.

In the sense that the availability of a Skoda with four seats and a hatchback for $10K means you aren't constrained to buy a Boxster with only two seats and no luggage capacity for $50K just because it's the only car in town. . .yes.

KFG

Linux? (2, Funny)

acd294 (685183) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782061)

Where can I download the linux tarball?

Re: PalmOS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782192)

And where can I find the PalmOS version?

screenshots (2, Interesting)

professorhojo (686761) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782062)

anyone got any screenshots? i do'nt wanna have to download & install this pig just to see what it looks like. :(

Re:screenshots (1)

alexhs (877055) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782244)

anyone got any screenshots? i do'nt wanna have to download & install this pig just to see what it looks like. :(

You do know Microsoft doesn't like people publishing screenshots of patent-pending user interfaces, don't you ?

Re:screenshots (5, Informative)

JDBaker (829512) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782259)

There's some on Neowin.net [neowin.net]

Office (3, Insightful)

linuxci (3530) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782063)

This can export to PDF? I'd have thought it more useful for them to add this feature to MS Office. Hopefully that feature will follow.

Re:Office (4, Informative)

wfberg (24378) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782117)

This can export to PDF? I'd have thought it more useful for them to add this feature to MS Office. Hopefully that feature will follow.

Any windows application can export to PDF via the miracle of PDFCreator [sourceforge.net] .

Not as fast as an Oo.o export to PDF, but export to PDF is hardly a world-shattering feature.

Re:Office (1)

jweage (472545) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782330)

I like GhostWord [sourceforge.net] better than PDFCreator as GhostWord maintains links in the PDF output. It only works with Word, PowerPoint and Excel though

That's why it's called... (1)

goldspider (445116) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782069)

"This preview just shows me an unpolished, poorly laid out graphics editor that acts more like a glorified (Microsoft) Paint, rather than any type of competition to Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro," wrote one user.

...BETA!!

Re:That's why it's called... (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782101)

Right. The production version will be much buggier and have fewer features.

Re:That's why it's called... (1)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782217)

...BETA!!

Maybe you haven't been paying attention, but these days "Beta" really means commercial release. Furthermore, alpha means beta, and vapourware means alpha. This is the new vocabulary.

Fark Acrylic Competition? (5, Funny)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782073)

Just doesn't have the same ring to it. I bet it's a trap.

Re:Fark Acrylic Competition? (2, Informative)

MandoSKippy (708601) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782112)

Mod Parent up for both being relavent AND using a wonderful Fark Cliche!

Re:Fark Acrylic Competition? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782254)

GET A BRAIN
MICROSFOT

Someone should submit this headline over at Fark anyway. Its bound to create some, er... interesting posts.

Re:Fark Acrylic Competition? (1)

Metryq (716104) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782340)

No, the beta does not support trapping yet.

System Reccomendations (1)

codesurfer (786910) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782077)

Those are some pretty high end specs being reccomended, including a

pressure-sensitive graphics tablet supporting the WinTab interface....

How many takers is that going to get?

Surprise!!! It's proprietary... (1, Informative)

topper24hours (853597) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782082)

FTA - "Microsoft noted Acrylic would not currently save pixel-type data to formats other than its native XPR file type" Well, that diminishes usefullness!! I recently had some pictures forwarded to me in PictureIT file format and they took 45 minutes to open...

Re:Surprise!!! It's proprietary... (2, Informative)

RaboKrabekian (461040) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782203)

FTA - "Microsoft noted Acrylic would not currently save pixel-type data to formats other than its native XPR file type" Well, that diminishes usefullness!! I recently had some pictures forwarded to me in PictureIT file format and they took 45 minutes to open...

You can save to jpg, gif, tif, etc by using "File/Export."

Same result, just a different part of the menu. XPR is analogous to a PSD file. You can still create jogs of your work when you're done.

Re:Surprise!!! It's proprietary... (1)

BrainSurgeon (875819) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782248)

Remember, this was an acquired product and they're keeping the NATIVE XPR file type which was created by the original company.

Lastly....IT'S A BETA and v1 in MS's eyes which means there will be some changes. They would be down right stupid not to allow this product to integrate into Office or other MS photo apps.

Not even JPEG (4, Insightful)

n0mad6 (668307) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782083)

From TFA:

However, Microsoft noted Acrylic would not currently save pixel-type data to formats other than its native XPR file type.

Being able to save as PDF is great and all, but it looks like this thing still has a ways to go before being useful.

Re:Not even JPEG (1)

Doctor Faustus (127273) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782234)

That's really dumb, too; it wouldn't really take them any work to support raster export into the PDF. You can just put the bytes of a JPEG into a PDF, mark it as JPG, and let Acrobat Reader handle the rest.

and in breaking news (1)

with_him (815684) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782084)

When this fails MS plans on buying Adobe which just purchased Macromedia for a clean sweep and true monopoly. -1 for flamebait anticipated by author

Bang assholes (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782096)

Especially those attached to niggers.

Hot hot hot.

Innovation! (-1, Flamebait)

vought (160908) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782097)

Wow...Picasa has been out how long now?

And iPhoto was out for how long before that?

Granted, iPhoto wasn't and isn't avilable for Windows, but it's what Acrylic and Picasa are both patterned on. For three years, Windows users who see iPhoto on my PowerBook have been asking..."How do I get that?"

Nice to see that Microsoft is still at the forefront of innovation. This, along with the music store article from earlier today only proves that they're the best in town when it comes to rethinking great ideas in slightly-better-than-mediocre execution.

Re:Innovation! (1)

Kiryat Malachi (177258) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782164)

Uhm... from TFA, iPhoto is a totally different sort of application from this, as is Picasa. Both of those are really archival/sort utilities, while this is a true edit utility.

Re:Innovation! (1)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782245)

Wow...Picasa has been out how long now

Wow... IrFanView and ACDSee have been out for how long now?

How funny that when it comes to Microsoft everyone has very clear memories of prior art, but when it comes to Apple or open source it's collective amnesia all around.

There is very little revolutionary innovation going on nowadays, especially in software. But there is a lot of evolutionary innovation, which ensures that software niches (like image management in this case) will likely never become stale.

Of course this is not a popular view when you must believe that your [favorite company or social movement] has been innovating up the wazoo since the dawn of time. But reality sucks sometimes.

Maybe it's just me.... (1)

ShyGuy91284 (701108) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782120)

But it sounds like the name of a possible Apple application....

Re:Maybe it's just me.... (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782316)

It's just you. I don't see a "i" in front of it.

Thanks, M$-bloatware! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782122)

Requirements: "Intel Pentium 4 machine, with Windows XP Service Pack 2, 512MB of memory, 500MB of disk space"

Will get you the following: "...an unpolished, poorly laid out... glorified (Microsoft) Paint..."

Jesus, pretty soon you'll need a gig of RAM and 20 GB of free hard drive space to play Solitaire.

Re:Thanks, M$-bloatware! (3, Funny)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782286)

Jesus, pretty soon you'll need a gig of RAM and 20 GB of free hard drive space to play Solitaire.

Well, I am not Jesus, but I will jump in anyway: This time has already come. You also need a 19" LCD panel. Thanks goodness I talked to the Best Buy sales rep before buying, or I might have ended up with a cheaper system that wouldn't let me play solitaire. And my internet is so much faster now too!

Re:Thanks, M$-bloatware! (1)

m85476585 (884822) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782305)

pretty soon you'll need a gig of RAM and 20 GB of free hard drive space to play Solitaire

But, you will have nice ultra-high-resolution images on each card, even if monitors will never be able to display that much resolution!. I can't wait until they include Clippy in Solitaire!

Re:Thanks, M$-bloatware! (1)

The_Whole_Fn_Show (767848) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782324)

pretty soon you'll need a gig of RAM and 20 GB of free hard drive space to play Solitaire

That's ok......I play Minesweeper.

"Passport required" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782125)

Screw that!

Not exactly... (5, Informative)

DigitlDud (443365) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782131)

This is not a rival to Adobe products, definetly not Photoshop. It's primarily a vector graphics program with some unique features in that area. It was orignally a program Creative House Expressions which Microsoft bought in 2003.

"Creature House Expression (formerly Fractal Design Expression) is a vector-based drawing tool featuring "skeletal strokes," a 2D drawing primitive which offers complete editability and scalability."
http://graphicssoft.about.com/cs/illustration/gr/e xpression.htm [about.com]

This new Acrylic beta is essential version 4 of that program.

Giving the timing of the release of a program that Microsoft had seemingly killed off years ago. I'd say they were planing to use it for vector creation in Avalon.

Re:Not exactly... (1)

neccoant (3345) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782219)

Fractal Design was such a great company. Painter, Expression, Poser, Bryce, and any MetaCreations plug-in originated somewhere in Fractal Design and Meta-something (they merged, and it was downhill from there. Now, the products are split across so many companies it is absurd. A painter-expression-poser-bryce suite, had the companies not been run so ineptly, would have been worthy Macromedia and/or Adobe competitors.

Re:Not exactly... (1)

zardo (829127) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782241)

What this means to me is that in this instance, google appears to have taken action to prevent microsoft from dominating the free image software game, with their recent purchase of picassa.

At first glance I thought this was microsoft fighting against google's innovation, but apparently I was mistaken.

Re:Not exactly... (1)

DigitlDud (443365) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782266)

Sorry for the typos, was in a hurry.

GOLD from the product's forum (4, Funny)

professorhojo (686761) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782134)

from unhappy almost-user
- "what? this won't work under Windows 2000? :( it took me over 2 hours to download! oh well - maybe next time"

from Annie, Beta Coordinator:
- Well don't make this sound like good bye. This is still the Expression newsgroup so E3'ers can post too. Do I even have a chance at talking you into getting WinXP? :-) I love XP! It never crashes, never gives me grief, nothing. It plays nice!

Re:GOLD from the product's forum (2, Interesting)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782294)

There's a lot of gold to be mined from the Debian mailing lists right now, in case you run out.

Corel Photo-Paint anyone ? (2, Informative)

alexhs (877055) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782149)

AFAIK, Corel Photo-Paint does already "bring together pixel-based painting and vector graphics features".

PDF and Illustrator formats are the same (1)

Part`A (170102) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782152)

The last version of Illustrator I looked at used the PDF standard for its files, so no surprises that it supports both. Older version of Illustrator did use a different file format as far as I know.

Does this mean ... (3, Funny)

KSobby (833882) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782153)

Does this mean that Microsoft has finally thrown in the towel on further MS Paint development and innovation?

Re:Does this mean ... (1)

professorhojo (686761) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782269)

coffee + your post = mess on keybaord. :-))))

in related news: "MS SQL Server! from the company that brought you Cardfile!"

Re:Does this mean ... (1)

Random BedHead Ed (602081) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782326)

Yes, the overwhelming stream of innovations we've been seeing in MS Paint in the past few years will soon come to an end. MS might also stop its heavy development of the feature-rich Notepad.exe, so you can forget about all the extra word wrap options you had been hoping for. They got those programs almost perfect, then abandoned them. I'm losing faith ...

You Thought Apple-Intel Wasn't Possible? (1)

ultimabaka (864222) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782159)

From TFA:
"A Microsoft representative was not available to comment on Acrylic's final release date or a retail price."

You mean to tell me, in a company with about a billion dollars in marketing, and lord knows how many marketing staffers, that they couldn't find ONE person to tell us these things? C'mon ;)

What!? (3, Funny)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782173)

Microsoft Paint ought to be enough for anybody!

Sigh. Not All Software Has To Innovate (4, Insightful)

TheFlyingGoat (161967) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782206)

Lots of comments already about how MS isn't innovating. Of course they aren't. Neither was Open Office, Gimp, Firefox, etc. Not all software needs to be innovative to be successful. It just needs to be as good or better than alternatives, or fit a niche market that isn't filled already.

Since the market for graphics programs is filled already, MS needs to make this at least as good as Gimp and Photoshop for it to be successful. Since this is only a beta, only time will tell if they've done that.

Besides, I thought having choices was a good thing? Once MS starts unfairly competing in the graphics program industry, then start complaining about it. Until then, this is a good thing.

PhotoPaint: Part Duh (1)

Trespass (225077) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782221)

They tried something like this five or so years ago, and met with little success. I don't think they'll have much luck trying to dislodge Photoshop from it's current position this time, either.

They might have a little luck going after Photoshop Elements users, but I doubt it.

Adobe would need to really screw up for a solid decade like Quark did for a competing product to have much of a chance in the marketplace. The economics of software for use by professionals is very different from that of that for entertainment and for hobbyists. Sure, Photoshop CS might be $700 and this product might be $100 and a little better. However, if the time of the user is expensive and/or in short supply there's not going to be any real drive to switch.

It seems like a solution in search of a problem, to me. I guess Microsoft is just hedging their bets.

Re:PhotoPaint: Part Duh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782312)

porkka failure!

How many times!?%$! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782236)

How many times is M$ going to try this?

I think they tried the same thing with their Photocrap app about 3 years back.

Oh, I really like the "not available for Mac" part when the original app is. That is as crappy as what Apple did with Logic.

Competing with Apple, not Adobe (1)

crow (16139) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782252)

This is something Microsoft is likely doing to compete with Apple, not Adobe. They've realized that while they have the business lock-in with Office, Apple is getting the home lock-in with iLife. We just saw earlier that they're going after iTunes and ITMS. Now they're going after iPhoto.

Pixels vs. Vectors (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782268)

These capabilities will put the product squarely in the market currently dominated by software maker Adobe Systems with its pixel-focused Photoshop and vector-driven Illustrator products.

Which version of Photoshop is he using? Pshop's had some form of vector support since 9, and assloads more since CS.

The reverse isn't so good for Illustrator, which can rasterize its vectors, apply Pshop-style filters, and handle transparency, but I wouldn't say it's there yet. ... ...

Slow Down Cowboy!

Slashdot requires you to wait 2 minutes between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 4 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

What about Paint.net? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782281)

At Washington State University, they are working on Paint.net [wsu.edu] [moab.eecs.wsu.edu], a Paint replacement what resembles Photoshop in many ways.

Paint.NET has many of the powerful features that expensive commercial applications have, including the ability to use layers. We welcome any suggestions, and provide the source code for final releases under the MIT License. Please explore this website, download the software and try out many of the things you would do on those other expensive or complicated applications.

It's really its own thing. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12782283)

It's really not much like Photoshop at all, or even Illustrator, but more like Painter. Expression has been around for about ten years. Like Painter, which was a fellow Fractal Design product at the time of its initial release, Expression has remained on the sidelines, relatively obscure.

The idea is that vector strokes are drawn and have a natural media brush profile attached to them. Since this it all remains as vectors the brushstrokes can be changed at will at any time. Illustrator can sorta do something like this these days but not nearly as well, and Expression could do this long, long ago.

Bitmap manipulation had been limited mostly to converting strokes into bitmap layers, or filling vector regions with bitmaps, with a few basic manipulation tools. Acrylic seems to add a little more to this, but do not expect it to be like Photoshop.

It has a Painter-like interface which can drive the Adobe user nuts, but the hybrid vector-natural stroke workflow feels rather liberating once you get the hang of it. If this is a free or low cost package when it is fully rereleased, it may pick up something of a following that may help get Metro in the door. That's a longshot though - Adobe still holds all the cards.

Gussy it up however you want. (1)

Anonymous Rockstar (624854) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782292)

What matters is does it work? Because I've used devices like that before - wasted a pretty penny, I don't mind telling you. And if acrylic works I'll download a dozen!

Two words (1)

Reinvigorate (891139) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782318)

Two words- Think Differenter

Why is MS allowed to purchase so many companies (2, Insightful)

mgpeter (132079) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782336)

Microsoft is a convicted monopolist, why on earth do the courts allow them to snatch up all of the companies that they are buying ?

Granted Image Editing is not terribly important, but when you realize they purchased Antivirus and Anti-Adware companies......They are going to use their market muscle (monopoly) to create a subscription based model, all pre-installed with any and every new computer.

They should have broke that company up.

It never stops.. (1)

eastshores (459180) | more than 9 years ago | (#12782341)

As if it will make a difference for one moment, but I would like to point out that all of the people comparing this beta to Photoshop, GIMP, Painter, etc. and criticizing Microsoft for producing it.. maybe could stop for one moment... look into a mirror.. take a deep breath and say to yourself.. "A software company can start and sell products even if they aren't first. I'm good enough, smart enough, and dogganit people like me!"
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