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Nefarious Skullduggery!

Interesting story about how Adobe won’t be able to get Photoshop 64-bit on Mac for the current release, and are looking at a difficult effort porting it to Cocoa. Daring Fireball has an extensive analysis of the technical issues and how things have played out. My bet, posted in January and still on the table, is that Apple will deprecate Carbon at WWDC and roll out migration tools, based on their own experiences as they migrate apps like iTunes and Final Cut.

Still, the other thing that’s popping up in some quarters is that the unavailability of a 64-bit version of Carbon is part of a scheme to “force” developers to use Cocoa. Even if true — why wouldn’t Apple rather have one application framework to enhance and test rathter than two? — this is hardly an issue of coercion.

What it really evinces is the lazy cynicism that all big tech companies are evil, so just like we bashed on Microsoft when they were the top dog, it’s time to bash Apple now that they’re successful. Apple’s decisions can no longer receive the benefit of the doubt, cannot possibly be the product of rational decision making or allocating limited resources. No, every time they backpedal on Carbon or don’t ship a Java 6 implementation, it’s prima facie evidence of nefarious skullduggery!

In fact, I’m adding a skullduggery! category right now to track blog entries about stuff like this.

Over on java.net, Fabrizio — who was constantly bashing Apple for not shipping JDK 6 until I guess he tired of it — typifies this line of thinking:

It’s also appalling to me to learn that strategic software manufacturers such as Adobe […] don’t get early warnings from Apple about its close technologies such Carbon and Cocoa.

Of course, if Apple did only its strategic partners about major OS strategies, and left all other developers out in the cold, we’d have a bunch more posts about the nefarious skulduggery! of that.

This makes me understand even better how important is to work with open technologies.

Yes, because open-source projects have such consistent and reliable software roadmaps, and will surely be the basis of Adobe’s products going forward.

Speaking of which, while praising Java for being 64-bit, it’s worth noting that neither Fabrizio nor anyone else thinks for a second that Java would be a viable technology for Photoshop. Even if Adobe has to do a massive rewrite to go to Cocoa, and just doing it in Java instead would give them 64-bit capability and an insta-port to every desktop platform, even us Java developers don’t even consider the idea of major apps being written in Java anymore.

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