Archive for December, 2007

Merry Christmas, Eid Mubarik, Happy Hanukkah and Happy Kwanzaa!

Just a quick note to wish everyone a joyous and safe holiday season! The busy personal schedule is taking a priority over the blog, but I’ll be back at it soon enough!

Going to Macworld -or- Shalimar, here I come!

So I’m going to Macworld in San Francisco next month. I feel a little funny posting this entry on my Thinkpad, although I don’t think it’ll be making the trip to San Fran. :) As a fairly new Mac owner, I’ve never actually been to Macworld.. so the trip should be interesting. To be honest, I’m probably more excited about spending some time in SF, rather than San Jose. Thanks Apple!

My first stop: Shalimar on Jones St. If you like Pakistani/Indian food, this is the best place in the city, IMO. My wife says she likes Naan ‘n Curry and Pakwan better, but I beg to differ.

Anyway, I’ll be presenting a few theater sessions – mostly for CS3 Web Premium and Interactive Video with Flash. If you’re planning to attend, maybe I’ll see you there!

12,842 years and counting…

comScore, a company that measures online activity, released their quarterly(?) report on online video on Nov 30/07 for the month of September. The last report on online video was published on Sep 12/07, and there were some interesting differences between the two reports. Some highlights listed below (keep in mind that these figures are derived from US Internet activity only):

  • Google jumped from 27% share of videos viewed online in July to 28.3% in September.

  • Google (through YouTube) is clearly the leader in its share of online video viewership. The runner-up for the title for September was Fox Interactive which had 4.2% of the share! For Fox, I’m guessing it’s myspacetv.com and fox.com contributing to this.
  • In the US, 2 out of 5 Internet users watched a video on YouTube in September – that’s 70 million people watching 2.5 billion video clips. The average viewing time was 2.7 minutes.. that comes out to 12,842 years of running time! (2.5B x 2.7min / 60 / 24 / 365). Yowza!

If you’re into these types of stats, check out the press releases section on comScore.com.

A few photos from the sales & marketing conference

I promised that I would post a few pictures from the recent Adobe sales & marketing conference.. and since I didn’t actually bring a camera myself, I had to rely on others sending me some of their shots.. I’m not sure what the official Adobe policy is on posting these publicly, but they’re all pretty generic, so I’m guessing it’s cool.


Adobe turned 25 this year (started on December 2, 1982 I believe) – so there was a big party on the Thursday night to celebrate. It was held in a huge tent/pavilion the size of two or three football fields! The main act was Smasmouth (lead singer pictured above), who actually put on a pretty good show, but the audio levels were way too high, making it impossible to actually talk to other people. C’est la vie.


Any companies out there that haven’t yet done an ‘Idol’ type event? Well, last week was Adobe’s turn – and I must say they did a pretty good job with the whole production. The best part was the judges – Terry White played Randy Jackson’s role quite well, including all the Yo Dawgs and telling everyone they were a little ‘pitchy’.


So here’s my brush with a Photoshop deity.. that’s me on the right and John Nack (Photoshop PM) on the left! Boy do I look short next to John – and he’s not super tall, which makes me a little vertically challenged.

I also got to meet Bruce Chizen (outgoing CEO), John Warnock (co-founder of Adobe, inventor of postscript) and Chuck Geschke (co-founder of Adobe), which was kind of neat.

Overall the conference was a ton of fun. I really do feel privileged to work at Adobe – not only because of the great software and technologies the company is known for, but also because of my brilliant and inspiring co-workers.

By the way, the above three photos are from Terry White.. and he has a much more interesting post on the 25th Anniversary Party.. so check it out.

Lots of updates on Adobe Labs

I was away for a week at an Adobe conference in San Jose and missed a number of updates to the Adobe Labs website:

  • Adobe AIR Beta 3: As we get closer to the eventual 1.0 release next year, Beta 3 on Labs includes a number of updates. Best place to get the skinny is the release notes page.

  • Adobe Flex 3 Beta 3: This is supposed to be the final public beta release, so look for lots of quality and performance improvements.
  • AIR extensions for Flash CS3, Dreamweaver CS3: Package and preview .AIR files directly within Flash CS3 and Dreamweaver CS3.

I hear other updates are on the way. Stay tuned :)

Sorta Hidden Resources on Adobe.com

According to Alexa.com, Adobe.com is the 99th most popular site on the planet with a 1.2% global reach, which basically means that 1 out of a 100 Internet users visit Adobe.com every day. What’s a little surprising is that only 3% of visitors end up at our technical support pages, so I’m guessing the bulk of the traffic is going to FlashPlayer or Adobe Reader downloads, or to the Designer/Developer community pages.

With the huge amount of content on the site, sometimes useful resources get buried, or simply overlooked. Case in point: the Adobe Video Workshop. This mini-site is a collection of 100+ video tutorials on all CS3 products, recorded by Adobe and community experts. Topics range from introductory for beginners to more advanced topics focusing on new features. Enjoy!

Link: http://www.adobe.com/designcenter/video_workshop/about.html

Adobe hiring a web-centric Sales Engineer in Toronto!

Boy, oh boy.. the Adobe SE team is hiring – this time in Toronto.
So if you live in my home town and would like to be the envy of all your friends (at least the designer/developer types), send me a note.. good Flash, web, presentation skills (and a willingness to travel) required.

‘Demo Challenge’ win at Adobe Sales & Marketing Conference

At the conference last week, all the SEs (System Engineers) and Evangelists were invited to participate in a demo shootout. Entries were judged prior to the conference and two finalists from two categories (Creative and Acrobat/LiveCycle) were selected to participate in the ‘on stage face-off’ as part of a general session (~2000 attendees).

My team’s entry made it to the finals and we (Adam Pratt, Lynn Grillo and I) got our chance to present our demo – taking an XML file of book titles, producing a multi-page catalogue in InDesign, output to PDF, output to Digital Editions and output to Spry-based (Ajax), mobile-friendly webpage. Plus, we took a low-res video of a guy dancing, stuck our manager’s head on it using After Effects, keyed out the background using Ultra, and brought the video into Flash for web playback, and used the same video as overlay advertising for the Adobe Media Player. All in 5 minutes! Whew! Well, most of the stuff was baked in advance, so it was merely a matter of getting through our ‘script’ with some jokes thrown in for good measure.

Our opponent in the face-off was Rufus Deuchler, an evangelist from Europe, who did a fantastic demo on LiveColor and Kuler in Illustrator.

In the end, the ‘applause-o-meter’ determined the winner – us! :) Our team had decided in advance to give the $2500 purse to charity – and we’re hoping Adobe will match the donation. One of the nice perks of being an Adobe employee is that the company will match your charitable contributions on a 1:1 basis up to a certain amount, so we should be able to make a small difference this holiday season.

Random Flex Resources

As you can tell, I have a lot to say after my week away. Here are a few Flex-related resources I came across over the last week or so:

  • Flex.org – this should be any Flex developer’s first stop for all things related to Flex.. I guess I hadn’t been there in a while and missed the site revamp. A huge improvement in terms of usability, so bravo to the site owners.

  • Blog.flexamples.com – Either this guy has some serious time on his hands, or he’s a really, really fast typist/developer. Lots and lots of useful examples.

Enjoy!

Changes at Work!

One of the problems of working at Adobe is that there are so many exciting things going on at the company, it’s hard to decide where to focus. “Should I dive deeper into Flex or AIR or Flash or Creative Suite or Connect or Mobile & Devices or Production Premium or or or… ?” Get the idea?

Therefore, when I was recently presented with a choice of a slightly different, more focused role within the SE team, I decided to accept (Although I haven’t made the final call to my future and past managers!). My new role is essentially going to focus on our Adobe Acrobat Connect Professional and Flash Media Server business, which is super exciting!

So as I start a transition to my new role over the next few months, the focus on my blog will probably shift to these technologies. Wish me luck!