If you aren’t a fan of the Adobe suite of products, you might not know the company’s latest abuse of users. The short version is they converted to a subscription service that will cost $49.99 per month to use the full suite of programs. That puts it squarely in the realm of the professional only. Amateurs and students are not welcome. There are short term discounts and at least for now Photoshop can be accessed for $19.99 per month but that’s not good enough to entice me or anyone else I know. That fee is just to get you started. Can you imagine what Adobe will demand next year or the following year?
The coupe de grace is that Adobe has forced retailers to remove from their shelves any remaining discs and return them to Adobe. One retailer told me this morning that Adobe demanded the discs but hasn’t issued credit tying up his company’s money for an undetermined period of time. In other words, they don’t know when Adobe will refund their investment in the recalled inventory. So not only has Adobe pooped on the public, it’s done that to retailers, too.
Well, that’s the end for me. This is about profits and I’m fine with companies making money. But my bottom line counts, too. So not one dime will be spent on an Adobe product by me ever again. The old versions of Photoshop won’t install on replacement computers or after reinstalling an operating system as we have proven time and again. If a computer dies, Photoshop dies along with it. That’s bad faith and a no-no in my book.
GIMP is the only semi-substitute I’ve used recently. It lacks some features, but for my purposes it will do. I won’t even use Adobe Reader since, just like Photoshop, my version of Acrobat no longer works after reinstalling Windows. Another mark against Adobe. I’ve lost some functionality but PDF Architect will allow me to read, scan, and create basic PDFs. Unfortunately, Quickbooks insists on using Reader for the PDF format or I wouldn’t have Reader on my system at all.
I lack the knowledge and skills to contribute to the development of open source software, but I can promote it. GIMP and Open Office meet my needs. The most important caveat to using GIMP is having to manually save frequently since it will freeze from time to time. This is part of my routine in other programs like WordPress so it isn’t a problem for me.
Before getting acquainted with Photoshop, I used Corel software. At that time their products were less feature-rich but otherwise good for creating handsome graphics and editing photos. Smart enough to see an opening when it presents itself, Corel is offering temporary special pricing to users of Adobe CS4-6 who think the cloud is all wet. Take advantage while you can. The photo editing suite is a mere $54 with free shipping at Amazon which sounds like an amazing deal compared to Photoshop.
While we’re on the subject of software, there are several free programs that I can recommend. NoteTab Light replaced Notepad as my text editor ages ago. It has a lot of extras built in but you can run it lean by hiding most of them. Rounding out my basic programs are Evernote, Firefox, Avast, Spybot, Dropbox, and Janetter for Twitter access. Evernote is the best of the lot and I am still finding ways to integrate it into my workflow. Give this one a go if none of the others.
If you want to play with some other photo or drawing programs, take a look at the Top 10 Best Free Photo Editing Software You Should Try in 2013. They look like a lot of fun to me and that’s exactly what being creative ought to be.