Another Life (persistence in games)

Peter Molyneux at Eurogamer:

What I love about cloud computing – and this hasn’t been explored yet – is that it allows for something that we as gamers haven’t had since the start of gaming, and that is persistence. We don’t have worlds or experiences that can continue and last for extended periods of time. We need to get rid of saved games.

I think game designers are afraid of persistence. You have to figure out the consequences of persistence or figure out a way to fudge it. You have to explain what is going to persist, why and what happens when the game is a year old.

Look at Call of Duty. Are the wars persistent? What about the damage to buildings? And what about the dead? Eventually the bodies will start to smell. How you add persistence to an FPS will change the game. Who’s making the ammunition? We’ve bombed all the factories?

Look at Warcraft. Eventually you’ll have chopped down every tree and mined every mine. Eventually the Undead will likely take over by amassing huge shambling armies. Adding persistence means thinking about the long term consequences.

And what happens in persistent worlds with clues and traps? Do you come across the body of previous players? Or do you brave the terrors of the dungeons only to find the burial chamber contains only the burned out campfire of the guys who looted it before you?

But I don’t think Mr Molyneux is being particularly prophetic. Persistence is the Next Big Thing in games. The challenge will be in not making it awful.

Some companies will deal with it in terms of expansions. More new places to go. Others will use resets. Once a year, everything gets ‘reset’ after a fashion. Others still will place their game in a sandbox. New resources will be supply drops.

What I’m interested in is a game where the structures are built by people playing Sim City or Minecraft. They’re destroyed by people playing Call of Duty and Warcraft. Supplies are generated by people playing FarmVille and shops are staffed by people playing Dead Hungry Diner. Bystanders in the street are Sims, crossed with GTA.

They don’t have to be playing the same game. But what’s to stop a Sim shopkeeper (in real life, a lawyer from Seattle) playing out an interaction with a grizzled CoD veteran (in real life, a 35 year old video store clerk from Miami). The CoD player is playing his favourite FPS and from his point of view is trying to track down the whereabouts of a possible insurgent in the area. The Sim player is interacting via SMS messages and emotes on his mobile phone. He’s dialled up the realism so later that day, he’s interacting with a GTA mugger (in real life, a 17 year old college student on her summer holidays) and escaping with his life but not his wallet.

Isn’t that what Second Life should have been?

ePubs and iBooks and whether we care about the EULA.

I took a couple of days to digest the iBooks Author news – to see what the fuss was about and form my own opinions in a timely fashion. I even took time to hoover in all of the opinion on the industry which, on the side of the creators, seems largely positive and on the side of the publishers, seems largely negative.

iBooks Author enables normal folk to create some amazing content. It enables the embedding of HTML widgets, the inclusion of presentation decks, 3D models, pictures, text – in fact – everything you’d want in a book or a magazine, and previously had to pay for an individual app. But one issue, these extra features won’t work in any competing ePub reader because they’re exclusive to iBooks.

From Nameless Horror: iBooks Author Rage

Apple claim no ownership of the product (there’s the standard “we reserve the right to reject and/or pull your book from the store” but that’s no different to any other e-store or bricks ‘n mortar outlet; you don’t have a right to be sold). Your copyright is unaffected. There is nothing whatsoever (so far as I can see) stopping you from taking the same content, assembling a different epub edition in a different program, of which there are plenty (though I’ve not found one that handles this level of designed-for-touch-device interaction and prettiness quite so easily

Obviously some folk are up in arms. Ed Bott, particularly, calls Apple “evil” and “greedy” but I’m failing to understand why he’s so incensed. Apple supports ePub formats, they continue to make the best reader of this cross-platform format on any platform.

All we’re waiting for is someone to create “ePub Author”.

So, two things.

  1. Why didn’t Apple create ePub Author? (and why are people upset about this?)
  2. Why hasn’t anyone created ePub Author? (and why are people not upset about this?)

The world hasn’t had much success in getting open standards out there. I mean, HTML is a standard and look at the mess we’ve had to endure for the last twenty years. And yes, the W3C can rail all they want about the proprietary extensions that make “iBooks” differ from “Epub” but do we have to think about why no-one has made an ePub Author app that doesn’t suck? You can get ePubs out of InDesign and out of Pages but if you want great results, you’re hand-coding the bits and pieces. And that’s not going to make anyone happy.

The big issue for some seems to be the EULA which demands a level of control over the output of the software. That is, they give you a tool for free to create great iBooks, which you can give away for free or sell for less the $15 on the store they’ll set up for you. This not only undercuts a shedload of publishers but also sets a precedent for the pricing. If $15 is the top price, eBooks just got a hell of a lot more affordable. That’s gotta be good for the market and, if Apple is only taking 30% of cover, it’s a lot better for the author as well. Speaking from experience here.

Some folk have compared this to, say, Microsoft demanding control of the output of Microsoft Word which would be a valid comparison if Apple had a monopoly share of the operating systems, a monopoly share of the word processing market, charged several hundred quid for iBooks Author and pushed the iBooks format as a standard across all devices, platforms and organisations. Which, of course, it doesn’t. On any level.

Some people pointed out that Apple has a monopoly share of the tablet market. Which, again, I’d have to say they don’t. They just have a large share of the profits and a pretty good share of shipments. But there were 87-odd tablets announced at CES in 2011 and I’m sure that some of them are selling, somewhere to someone.

Some folk are determined to blame Apple for breaking their expectations that the company would release an amazing ePub editor. Not only that – but that would allow folk to build sparkly ePubs on a Mac using a free tool, glittering with Apple Awesome Sauce and sell them for any price on Android. In any sane version of the world, this does not work. Apple has no interest in promoting Android – they’re much more likely to promote Windows Phone 7 than Android, truth be told. And they’ve no interest in promoting you and your product unless it coincides with their own aims: making the Mac, the iPad and the iPhone the world leaders in great products.

You want to make great ePubs and sell them anywhere? Apple still provides probably the best ePub reader on any platform, for free, to about 300 million customers on iOS. Customers who don’t mind paying for content. And you can deploy on Android and wherever else has an ePub reader. It’s a standard so there must be millions of them. All you have to do is hand-roll the ePubs yourself. Stop stop whinging and get stuck in.

But for the average punter? iBooks just works. And the iBooks available through iBooks Author (though there doesn’t seem to be a solution for iPhone) will be fine considering the number of iPads out there. As a consumer of eBook formats, iBooks delivers – as does Kindle. I don’t recall the outcry when Kindle didn’t support the ePub standard?


I’m a little early with this but that’s no bad thing. It’s time to think – to reminisce – and maybe even to plan. Next Monday night, NiMUG will be holding another meeting but this Saturday is much more auspicious.

On January 24th
Apple Computer will introduce
And you’ll see why 1984
won’t be like “1984”

This Saturday is the 25th Anniversary of the Apple Macintosh, heralded by this advert shown during the Superbowl, which has since attained cult status and still wins awards even now. For this advert, Apple hired award-winning director Ridley Scott (best known perhaps for Alien, Blade Runner, Thelma & Louise, Gladiator, Black Hawk Down) and the result was a a masterpiece.

Like them or love them, you can’t ignore the Macintosh. While I was exposed to the Mac in university, my first own Mac was a second hand LCII. With the under-clocked anaemic processor and a 10MB RAM ceiling, it wasn’t fast (though as I was used to a Mac Classic, it was no slouch). As soon as I could afford it, I upgraded to a Performa 5400, a 180MHz Black monstrosity that provided me with TV as well as the ability to mess with video clips. It also provided me with my first taste of internet at home with it’s 33600 baud softmodem. I remember buying a 64 MB RAM chip for it and it costing over £100 – bringing me to a whopping 80MB. My next machine was the original Bondi iMac – the machine that arguably saved Apple. This was joined a short while later by Pismo, a 400 MHz svelte black PowerBook with a fantastic batter life and it was on this machine that I took my first tentative steps into Mac OS X – Apple twinning a much improved version of their famous GUI with UNIX was a master step – even if some didn’t believe it was ready for prime time – and those guys probably still aren’t happy. I picked up the Public Beta at Apple Expo and never looked back. I migrated later to a 1 GHz Titanium and then to a 1.25 GHz Aluminium PowerBook. Then to a 1.67 GHz Aluminium model before making the jump to a MacBook Pro. The rest is just recent history. I’ve played around with other “Apple” products such as a Quicktake 150, a Newton MessagePad 120 and 2000, umpteen Stylewriters over the years and there was never any doubt that the next machine would be a Mac. And it’s not for lack of choice – I’ve always, since starting my first professional job, had access to the latest Windows, Solaris and Linux – but none of them held the same shine.

While we might be all ga-ga about the iPhone or concerned about our stocks and shares if Apple’s CEO trips and stubs his toe, it’s about time that we considered how the world would be like without the iPhone, the iPod and the Mac.

Apple finishes their press releases with:

Apple ignited the personal computer revolution in the 1970s with the Apple II and reinvented the personal computer in the 1980s with the Macintosh. Today, Apple continues to lead the industry in innovation with its award-winning computers, OS X operating system and iLife and professional applications. Apple is also spearheading the digital media revolution with its iPod portable music and video players and iTunes online store, and has entered the mobile phone market with its revolutionary iPhone.

Look at your screen with your windows and buttons, with the rounded corners and overlapping windows. Consider how far we’ve come based on the hard graft of that little company in Cupertino. There’s barely a computer in the world which doesn’t bear the mark of those pioneers in Apple. Others have done admirable work – but they were standing on the shoulders of giants.

It seems fitting that this quarter end, Apple celebrated their best quarter ever.

“Even in these economically challenging times, we are incredibly pleased to report our best quarterly revenue and earnings in Apple history—surpassing $10 billion in quarterly revenue for the first time ever,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO.

Thanks, Apple. I’ve enjoyed the last few years – here’s to many more.

Microsoft outlines Vista strategy

InformationWeek has some choice quotes from Microsoft executives:

“We’ve got a pretty noisy competitor out there,” Brooks said of Apple whose “I’m a Mac… and I’m a PC,” commercials criticize Windows Vista. “You know it. I know it. It’s caused some impact. We’re going to start countering it. They tell us it’s the iWay or the highway. We think that’s a sad message. Software out there is made to be compatible with your whole life.”

Considering the number of anti-trust suits Microsoft has had to file and the lawsuits regarding their blocking of compatibility with SAMBA and other network clients plus the arguments over the Office file formats, it seems ironic that Microsoft talks of compatibility.

“We broke a lot of things. We know that, and we know it caused you a lot of pain. It got customers thinking, hey, is Windows Vista a generation we want to get invested in?” So Brad Brooks, Microsoft’s VP of Windows Vista consumer marketing, fessed up publicly this week.

Microsoft has a budget of hundreds of millions of dollars in order to rectify this. They’re going to spend it on marketing.

“Windows Vista is an investment in the long term,” Brooks said. “When you make the investment into Windows Vista, it’s going to pay it forward into the operating system we call Windows 7.” All the more reason, Brooks said, to upgrade to Windows Vista sooner than later.

Translation: Please buy Vista now and then Windows 7 in about two years time (assuming it ships on time).

Bill Gates steps down.

The BBC has a thought provoking review of Microsoft, with today being Bill Gates’ last day as the Bog Man on Compus.

In early 2004, …Mr Gates predicted that within two years the problem of spam – junk e-mail – would be solved. … Four years further on and it is clear that Mr Gates prediction has not been borne out. If anything spam has got worse.

In 1995 Mr Gates co-wrote a book entitled The Road Ahead which gave little mention to the rising tide of interest in the net and its looming influence.
Later editions of the book were re-written to correct the omission

It is something of a myth that Microsoft is a hive of innovation that regularly pumps out products that take on the world.

I’ll be sad to see him go. Evidently the industry has just lost one of their great visionaries.

Microsoft re-invents the past. Again.

Back a hundred years ago when I was studying Human-Computer-Interaction, there was much discussion about touchscreens. They mostly discussed the difference between a mouse, a touchscreen and a light pen. The latter two devices got short shrift from my lecturer as they had two issues.

  1. your arm obscured the screen
  2. your arm would get tired

The recent upswing in multi-touch touchscreen technology, pioneered by Jeff Han’s amazing multi-touch demo and brought to consumers a year ago in Apple’s iPhone, has produced a lot of speculation as to the nature of computing devices. For the same reasons as above, I think touchscreens, even with haptic responses, will become an additional way to interact. It has advantages and disadvantages – it absolutely sucks for data entry in the same way that voice recognition sucks for data entry. In addition, touchscreens might be fine for 17 screens but do you really want to spend a day directly manipulating data on a 30″ LCD? Or two of them?

Let’s experiment.
Put your keyboard just ABOVE your monitor. Put your hands on your keyboard. Now imagine that being your new work position? Of course – it’s going to be bollocks.

None of this stops Microsoft re-announcing multi-touch like it’s new all over again.

This is what happens when someone innovates and Microsoft photocopies. There will be poor implementations of multi-touch for the next few years from Microsoft (remember that Windows 7 is still slated for 2010) just as they have ‘bullet pointed’ every innovation from other companies.

“Multi-touch? Sure, our OS has multi-touch. It’s shit and doesn’t work right but our end users will blame themselves for not being better at using it so we’ll get away with our shoddy implementation. Anyone for Foosball?

This is the pattern I’ve seen repeated now for over a decade with Microsoft. I remember mentioning cool new technologies and my friend countering them with “Yeah, Windows has that”. One of the conversations had this gist…

Me: Cool new feature in Mac OS – Location Manager. You select this option and with one click can choose which network ports to activate, whether sharing should be on or off and so forth. It’s a simple selection – it’s great – takes all the work out of changing locations.

Location Manager

Friend: Yeah, Windows has had that for ages.

Windows Hardware Profiles

Me: It requires a reboot? How do you set your options? You have to edit the configs directly? Uh, that sucks…

Friend: Heh. MACINTOSH stands for “Macintosh Always Crashes If Not Then Operating System Hangs!

Me: I have to go over there now…

It never mattered on the QUALITY of the implementation, just that the bullet point was fulfilled. This was repeated again and again over the last two decades and it just staggered me that people who were, to all intents and purposes intelligent, still endured the awfulness of Windows.

Back in 1996 when I was living in Belfast, Apple wasn’t doing so well and I refrained from convincing a friend to buy a Mac. He had no intention anyway – but I remember him laughing at our Macs afterwards (he’d gotten excellent PC-buying advice consisting of hearsay about how Macs were crash-happy). Five minutes at his flat showed how he worked with his PC. He screamed at it. He bashed the monitor. He repeated data entry again and again because Word simply couldn’t handle the large files he was throwing at it. In the end he finished his dissertation on a Mac he borrowed from me and yet still, even in the face of superior capability (on an older, slower machine) still remained a PC user.

It was around then I came to the conclusion that as well as perceptive, cognitive and emotional intelligence, there must be some sort of ‘common sense’ intelligence that was missing. It’s one thing to never use a Mac and be ignorant of the advantages. It’s another thing entirely to have them spelled out, demonstrated, used and then still defend your shoddy technology choices.

This neatly segways into two conversations I had recently about the rumours surrounding the new iPhone. Cheaper prices? Wider distribution? There’s a sizeable number of people who have iPhones now who do not want the general public to have iPhones – they enjoy the exclusivity.

We only have to wait a few days to see what is happening with the iPhone. And two years to see them poorly copied on Windows.


A stunning piece of advertorial from InfoWorld via Nortel’s sponsored IDC survey.

a considerable number of what it calls “hyperconnected” users … those using at least seven devices and nine applications … accounted for 16 percent of the population in the study

Behind the hyperconnected were the “increasingly connected,” who use four devices and as many as six applications and account for 36 percent of the population.

i don’t find this hard to believe considering that at home I have a heap of IP-enabled equipment: three routers, a desktop computer (iMac), three laptops (17″ Pro, Air and Asus eeePC) , a slingbox, a game console (Wii) one Internet tablet (Nokia N800), two iPhones and two other internet-capable phones (Nokia and Sony-Ericsson).

The article continues like an infomercial but points out that your local friendly neighbourhood It department may have to change the way they work to allow for more heterogenous workspaces and include platforms like mobile telephones, FaceBook or even game consoles (those that have web browsers built in). How frustrating is it that I can’t just connect to Facebook or LinkedIn to ask a question or to help me in resourcing a new place in my team. I end up having to go home and do my investigations there. IT departments are still driven by paranoia and fear, not for the loss of data, but for the loss of their job.

Unified communications, which is promoted by companies such as Microsoft and Nortel, will make an impact, according to IDC and Nortel. Networks will need to accommodate identity, presence, location, telephony and data.

And we see two companies uniquely qualified to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by making these solutions expensive, proprietary and failure-prone.

I wouldn’t describe myself as hyper-connected even though I’m sitting at a desktop computer with a laptop in my bag, an internet tablet on my right and an iPhone on my left. We need to establish a platform for the hyperconnected, get ubiquitous network access (is this going to be Wifi, WiMax or 3/4G?) and improve the battery life of these devices. And we should get right to resolving these issues as soon as we’ve defeated poverty.

Tom Raftery tries out WWT

Darth Vader said:

“Give yourself to the Dark Side. It is the only way you can save your friends. Yes, your thoughts betray you. Your feelings for them are strong.”

Tom Raftery, on the other hand, recently converted to the Mac and tried out Microsoft’s World Wide Telescope which was released this week:

This is, unfortunately, typical Microsoft software behaviour. Launch bloated, Windows only, error-prone software with the minimum of QA or testing. Let the unsuspecting public be your free testing department and hopefully get the software right by the third revision.

WorldWideTelescope, if you recall, was the thing that made Scoble cry. I guess he must have been using DirectX 10 (again from Tom’s comments)

“Tried installing in Vista Ultimate – the Directx 9 install came up, which I cancelled since 10 is already installed – and it crashes upon opening!

Does this program not recognize DirectX 10?? Who does the hiring at Microsoft?! UFB!”

I must add that I’ve been pleasantly Microsoft free for over a year now. I do have Windows around but that’s for support work at $BIG_COMPANY and only that. I don’t use Microsoft products on my Mac at all and it’s made my life easier. There are some web sites that have faults but a quick email to the webmasters have sorted things out (certainly in the case of Argos/HomeBase).

It’s certainly a different climate to a few years ago where any mention of the Mac was met with scorn. Anyone that doesn’t see the change in the weather is deluding themselves.

Microsoft extending XP to 2010

Beleaguered software vendor Microsoft is adding a couple of years to their spurned child, Windows XP::

‘Michael Dix, head of Windows client product management, tells the story, “One thing we’ve heard loud and clear, from both our customers and our partners, is the desire for Windows on this new class of devices.”‘

Referring to Ultra-Low-Cost-PCs. Or ‘cheap shite’. (I’m being unfair here – they’re referring to the eee PC and the Intel Classmate). They going to continue selling XP for these devices until mid-2010 and you can purchase support for them until 2014. Meanwhile large companies are still running Windows 2000 which must be absolutely galling for the Redmond giant.

What it really does is buy Microsoft some more time, allowing them to still sell Windows while not directly admitting that Vista has been an abject failure. The unmitigated turd that was the intial Vista release and the subsequent code diarrhoea that were presented as service packs just showed how poorly Vista was thought of internally – developers worth their salt were obviously repurposed to another project more deserving of attention.

The 2010 cut-off date is around the time that Microsoft intends to ship Windows 7. Their new ultra-secretive OS development that will include the features cut from Vista (database file system for one…)

Neat way to sidestep shit Vista sales!

All sing along, “How much is that turkey in the window….the one with the Microsoft logo….”

ADBE: Nearly there

The recent news that Adobe Creative Suite 4 will not be 64-bit for the Mac is taken as a blow to the Mac. It will be 64-bit for Windows on 64-bit machines running a 64-bit Windows OS (which is a surprisingly small number of people).

64-bit Windows XP runs slower than 32-bit Windows XP so the benefits are not likely to be seen there and the number of people running (or able to obtain XP-64) is a rounding error on the Windows sales market. In truth, the only advantage to running XP-64 was to be able to address more than 4 GB of memory with a single process but for many the disadvantages with DirectX and .NET outweighted the advantages.

With Windows Vista, every Vista DVD (with the exception of Starter) ships with 32-bit and 64-bit versions – and if it’s not there, you can buy it from Microsoft for a small additional fee. This means, in theory, if you install with a 64-bit processor, you’re going to get a 64-bit operating system. For home users, this means being able to address between 8 and 16 GB of RAM. For the “Pro” versions of Vista it means being able to support more than 128 GB (not that there are many machines that can fit that amount of RAM in their cases!) The 64-bit version of Vista still has compatibility issues with hardware and software but in the next few years it will be standard. What this means for most people is that when they buy a new PC, they’ll get the benefits of 64-bit software.

Adobe’s problem with CS4 is that it’s 32-bit software written using the Carbon APIs. Apple has been shopping Cocoa as their next-generation framework around for a decade now and still Adobe (and Microsoft) laboured on with the Carbon ‘compatibility’ API because it represented the least amount of work for them. The plan originally was to make Carbon 64-bit compliant but in WWDC in 2007, this plan was trashed. Carbon is old, archaic and it’s too much work to get it to 64 bit when they could keep it at 32 bit and put extra work into Cocoa to make it fabulous. But this buggered up the plans of Adobe and Microsoft and as a a result, Officd will likely remain 32 bit and Adobe’s Creative Suite will not be 64-bit until version 5 which is a long time away.

Is this a big deal

First, lets dispel the idea that 64-bit software is considerably quicker than 32-bit software. In many cases it is slower. But being able to address a lot more RAM – or even being able to reduce the reliance of disk at all and keep entire apps, especially those regularly used, in RAM, is a bit step forwards. Heavy Photoshop users routinely throw around images that are multi-gigabyte in size and being able to load the whole thing into RAM is a huge potential speed boost (never mind having Photoshops own Virtual Memory system eclipsed by fast RAM rather than slow disk).

The gains enjoyed by moving to 64-bit Photoshop on Windows may be reduced by the fact that Vista is a dog (link, link ) and will already reduce performance (though you can turn off the eye candy in Vista and it improves performance considerably). And the fact that, well, it’s Windows which brings along with it an entire world of suck. (This is my opinion). Having to use Windows every day saps my enthusiasm for computing as a whole (and I can say this after using Windows every day for the last 9 months in the day job going from using Mac OS X for years in the day job). Windows just isn’t a lot of fun.

So my opinion is that, performance wise, this won’t make a lot of difference.

Who’s to blame here?

I think that miscommunication between Apple and Adobe is to blame. Adobe knew about Cocoa and how it was the future. Apple should have communicated earlier that it saw no future for Carbon beyond the first 10 years. It’s a stupid mistake to make for two companies who have so much in common and who could be great together and this brings me to a point which has been laboured a few times in past years.

Apple and Adobe could do with working closer together for the benefit of both. It would help to reduce the frustration of everyone who’s had to work with Adobe’s implementation of Acrobat on the Mac platform. It might even bring Flash/AIR to the iPhone/iPod touch platform.

I lay the blame at both their feet for not working together. There’s definitely issues with the companies as they both seem to be angling to be a forerunner in the online application space. Apple is trumpeting HTML, Javascript, AJAX and their own media types. Adobe is trying to get Air, Flash and PDF everywhere. But there should be enough crossover that these companies, which have a long and chequered history, to work together. The adage “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” is certainly true when both companies consider Microsoft. Microsoft is attacking Apple in operating systems (mobile, portable, desktop, server) and media (Windows Media versus Quicktime) and attacking Adobe with Silverlight (as an alternative to AIR/Flash) and their online document formats (which challenge PDF).

Adobe is a relatively small company. They have under 7000 employees They had enough clout to buy Macromedia and gain control of Flash. Adobe’s market cap (the market value of their corporation) is just over 20 Billion this morning.

Why is this relevant?

Apple has about 20000 employees. They’ve got a lot of cash in the bank ($18 billion at last count) and will likely pull in another billion profit at the end of this quarter. With Cash and stock, they could buy Adobe and still leave themselves with a few billions dollars as a buffer against hard times.

What would this mean?

Look at Apple’s recent acquisitions? They bought Macromedia’s Final Cut product pre-1999 and killed the Windows version, releasing the code eventually as Final Cut Pro and iMovie. They bought Astarte in 2000 and released iDVD and DVD Studio Pro. They bought eMagic in 2002 to get Logic and killed the Windows versions. They bought Nothing Real to get Tremor and Shake and killed the Windows versions. Apple isn’t afraid to spend some money to get strategic technology and then kill off a product or three in order to retain loyalty. There were a lot of Logic users who were pissed at Apple’s decision to kill Logic for Windows and I’m sure there were a few who were annoyed about Shake (though decidedly less due to the eminence of Linux in that space).

Wouldn’t an Apple acquisition of Adobe seem to make some sense?

It would give Adobe access to hundreds of Cocoa-proficient engineers with access to the bowels of CoreImage. It would accelerate the development of Mac compatible software development within that company. It would mean that Flash on Mac might not suck as much. And it would likely mean that not only would Adobe stop making Craprobat Reader for Mac, they may rethink the PDF strategy of the company and make it less of a second class citizen on the Mac. Yeah, it’s my opinion.

It would aggravate a lot of Windows users who use/pirate Photoshop on Windows and that market is very large but considering the roadmap they could present, it would then make sense for Apple to do a license trade-in for the Mac-only version. Buy a Mac and trade in your Adobe CS for Windows license for a free Adobe CS for Mac. That would nearly halve the cost of moving to the Mac and get Apple a load of good kudos in that space at relatively small amounts of lost revenue.

This is not a time to be meek.