Max Dunn

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Adobe Desktop Technologies Ascend to the Cloud

Adobe Photoshop is the premiere desktop tool for editing images. It offers the most powerful algorithms for image processing available anywhere, and is loved by creative people around the world. Not only is it ubiquitous in design shops, it is also used by companies (like ourselves) who generate dynamic content with it.

Photoshop is well-exposed to automation: it has actions that are easy for non-developers (yet quite powerful), and it also supports ExtendScript, as well as C++ and CEP (Adobe's Common Extensibility Platform). XMPie is a company that has actually built a product, uImage, that runs Photoshop desktop like a server to produce one-to-one marketing pieces.

Until now, the Photoshop rendition engine has only been available through the desktop application. However, Adobe has just announced the pre-release program for Photoshop as a Service.

At the Adobe Summit last week, Adobe presented our Silicon Designer for AEM as one of the features of their Digital Asset Management (DAM) platform, highlighting the strides they've made in extensibility and Creative Cloud integration. In their presentation entitled, "What's New in Adobe Experience Manager Assets: Top DAM Features," Josh Ramirez and Elliot Sedegah shared 10 recent steps forward for AEM Assets 6.4, one of them being tight integration with Silicon Designer.

This week at the Adobe MAX conference, we at Silicon Publishing are proud to release our first Open Source framework. Called "LotusJS," it's the brainchild of our Software Architect, Dorian Smiley, the culmination of more than three years of focused effort. We're confident that it will be quite useful to many around the world – and we hope to attract a growing community of collaborators who can bring it to even greater heights.

Silicon Connector for Box 2.0 is finally available! When Silicon Connector for Box first came out in 2013, it was designed to let InDesign users access assets in the Box cloud directly. Since then, the Connector product has become so popular that we've added Connectors for 10 other DAMs/storage platforms. We have gotten continually better at extending Adobe Creative Cloud technologies, and we have now applied that experience to bring integration between Adobe CC and Box to an entirely new level.

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Silicon Connector is enjoying huge popularity, and as we build out more and more implementations (12 Connectors and counting!) the product is becoming more clearly defined, while the product roadmap is also taking shape. While the main feature of "connecting InDesign to URL-based assets" is itself quite enough of a product to save large authoring groups immense amounts of time, the "nice-to-have" features have taken on a life of their own, and become common to most new implementations. Here I will clarify the ways the product definition is being extended, now and into the future.

I hope to explain:

  1. What we originally meant by the term "Silicon Connector" and how this was consistently rather poorly explained by us, and in turn how it was often misinterpreted by the world.
  2. What we mean now by "Silicon Connector". How to understand what this product is, and what it does.
  3. Where the product and its many variants (AEM Connector, the InDesign Plugin for Flight, the Widen InDesign Plugin, WebDAM CC Connector, etc.) are headed.

In places, this post quotes heavily from the original blog post about Silicon Connector that came out when we first announced this product in 2010. At that point of time we had a narrow perspective on the product. Six years later, it has grown quite organically and evolves in response to feedback from thousands of users worldwide, as it connects InDesign to a diverse and growing array of over 10 Digital Asset Management systems.

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