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Adobe introduces Lightroom beta competing with Apple’s Aperture

COLLAB distinguished with the APDC / Siemens Innovation Award

Adobe announced the availability of a beta version of the professional application for photographers Lightroom, a digital imaging solution with a philosophy of operation, appearance and characteristics very similar to Apple’s Aperture program, launched at the end of last year.

The beta version of the application is available from the Adobe website, which in this way intends to collect the opinions of professional photographers before launching the final version of the software, scheduled for late 2006. As Adobe collects feedback of photographers, modules and feature sets may change, says the manufacturer in a statement, «as consumers become more popular or give priority to some of the digital photography management processes».

Among those who have tried the new software from Adobe there are many similarities with Apple’s Aperture. Lightroom was conceived as a post-production tool for photographers, designed to work essentially with images in RAW format, just like Apple’s solution.

Its interface, with a black background and the possibility to darken the tools in order to focus attention on the images, also recalls Aperture, as does the possibility of quickly navigating between many images, the options for making slide shows or the ability to create web galleries.

On the other hand, the first tests of the beta version suggest that Lightroom may be a much less demanding application in terms of requirements than the Apple application. According to Adobe officials, Lightroom introduces new ways of working, particularly when it is necessary to handle a high volume of images.

Lightroom was first introduced in April 2005, during the Adobe Ideas Conference, and has since been improved. Initially available only for the Macintosh, Lightroom will support, later on both Windows and Macintosh platforms, ensures Adobe.

Separately, Adobe also announced that it has acquired Navisware’s FileLine Digital Rights Management (DRM) division, through which it thinks it will be able to add new capabilities to its Adobe LiveCycle Policy Server, with the aim of ensuring the protection of business documents in the formats PDF, Microsoft Office and CAD, regardless of how they are stored or delivered inside and outside the firewall. The terms of the agreement have not been revealed.

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