Yesterday, I came across a New York Times piece describing how EMC’s network security was compromised which led to the RSA SecurID data extraction. While several factors were at play, an Adobe software vulnerability was fingered as a significant attack vector. So, given the seemingly constant parade of Adobe security bulletins and updates, combined with CPU-crushing bloat, I tweeted the news as an opportunity for folks to once again reevaluate their dependence on Adobe products. And one follower wondered what options are available to her.
Adobe makes a number of packages many of us have come to depend upon. Yet, in two distinct categories, I’ve successfully reduced my exposure these last few months – beginning when I picked up a 13″ Macbook Air as my primary personal computer.
First, while I haven’t been able to completely excise Flash from my web travels, I have certainly cut back. And, of my three browsers, the plugin is only installed (by default) within Google Chrome. It can be crashy, and it does take a toll on performance, but there are still areas of the web inaccessible without it… despite Apple’s insistence on a Flash-free mobile OS.
However, image editing is the category where I’ve been able to completely excise Adobe. Although it wasn’t an entirely comfortable transition. You see, I’ve been using Photoshop since 1997. But given ever increasing prices and superfluous functionality (to me), I downloaded Acorn and Pixelmator as potential replacements last spring. And, as I said, it was somewhat uncomfortable given over a decade of Photoshop usage and so I only dabbled in the apps – quickly returning to the familiar. That is, until my MBA arrived. As I didn’t have an external optical drive handy to re-load an older version of Photoshop and wasn’t yet sold on a download of the new version of Elements, I gave both Acorn and Pixelmator another, more serious look. I’ve since settled on Pixelmator as my full time image editing app. It’s quick and pretty and does just about everything I want it to. Although, in occasionally unexpected ways that requires a bit of hunting.
Another reason this incoming Twitter query caught my eye is because it originates from a TiVo employee. She’s not a TiVo spokesperson and hopefully doesn’t work Sunday evenings but, given the still incomplete HDUI and sluggish Premiere experience, I have to wonder if Adobe’s Flash was the right platform choice for TiVo.