There's a clash of the titans brewing in the ongoing war of words between Adobe and Apple. Apple has implemented rules for iPad and iPhone developers that basically shut out Adobe Flash and several other third-party development programs from being used on Apple's devices.
Apple insists that this is to keep applications on their devices at a high quality standard, but some at Adobe and others maintain that this is simply a ploy to control the mobile platform. One former Apple developer wrote a scathing article this week with more expletives than the law allows, and he insists that he will never program again on any Apple device.
While this type of conflict may seem extreme, it's very common in corporate market battles such as this one. It looks like we'll have Apple against Adobe, Google and several others to see who sets the standard for how we'll use the new mobile devices. While there are no bad guys here, there's no doubt that Apple is moving more toward a locked-down approach in their business strategy, and this will result in fewer choices unless others can compete in this area.
Speaking of Adobe, the company released its Creative Suite 5 this week. One new Photoshop feature called Content Aware Fill is amazing, allowing photos to be edited in a totally new way.
Twitter has been stirring the waters itself. The company recently bought the popular Apple iPhone Twitter app Tweetie. The news of this purchase has literally zipped through blogs and sites all over the Web, and it is causing great concern among companies who build add-ons and third-party Twitter clients.
Many see this as a sign that Twitter will gradually add services to its site that will make their partners' offerings obsolete. This reminds many of the strategy that Microsoft allegedly used in which each version of Windows would add programs or features copied from stand-alone applications on the market. It will be interesting to see what Twitter does with Tweetie, and also to discover if they buy more of their partners' products to add to the site.
Techcrunch.com reported this week that Twitter has also just released a new service aimed at journalists and media pros. The site which is called Twitter Media is dedicated to providing case studies and guidelines to help users maintain good relations and constant contact with their followers and users. Many observers believe that all the recent activity and change at Twitter indicates they are no longer willing to stay still while others benefit from their platform.
One of the most endearing videos I've ever seen appeared on YouTube last week and it says a lot about the promise of tablet style computing as implemented on the Apple iPad and others. The video can be found by searching on YouTube for this phrase: "A 2.5 year old has a first encounter with an iPad." In it an adorable young child goes to town on an iPad and quickly learns her way around the touch interface.
To me the most revealing aspect of the video is how enjoyable the child finds the device and how easy it is to explain to her how to use it. It's obvious that touch devices such as this are going to open up entirely new ways of thinking and computing, and certainly of teaching.
Thanks as always, see you next week.