Photoshop was first sold as Barneyscan XP

Adobe's Photoshop, the all-conquering image manipulation software that now anchors the subscription-based Creative Suite, was originally written in Pascal and distributed under the name "Barneyscan XP" for its first licensor. Not long after...

The fate of Photoshop was sealed when Adobe, encouraged by its art director Russell Brown, decided to buy a license to distribute an enhanced version of Photoshop. The deal was finalized in April 1989, and version 1.0 started shipping early in 1990.

Over the next ten years, more than 3 million copies of Photoshop were sold. That first version of Photoshop was written primarily in Pascal for the Apple Macintosh, with some machine language for the underlying Motorola 68000 microprocessor where execution efficiency was important.

Here's an ad for Barneyscan's hardware, with the software lurking in the background, as described in this Quora thread.

Here's more on the legend of Photoshop-as-Barneyscan from Stories of Apple:

Barneyscan XP, which was actually more lauded than the scanning hardware, was the first commercial incarnation (and distribution) of a program which would be rereleased eleven months later to much greater impact.

Encouraged by its art director Russell Brown, Adobe decided to buy a license to distribute an enhanced version of the software. In February 1990 it released the first version of Photoshop, the name originally chosen by Thomas Knoll.

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Programmer demonstrates his "perfect" Minesweeper AI

Code Bullet claims in this demo video, "I was able to create what I believe to be a perfect minesweeper player." Read the rest

Remove the DRM from iTunes movies with TunesKit

More and more people watch movies and TV shows at home, exclusively through the use of streaming services like Hulu or Netflix, but I'm not one of them. I'm not against streaming: the problem is that my partner and I live, full-time, in a 40 foot long motorhome, puttering around North and Central America. A lot of times, our rambles take us to places where the Internet connectivity is lousy. The upload/download speeds we get from RV parks or in the parking lots we surf are good enough for me to do my work online, but make for a buffering-filled nightmare if I even think about streaming anything. And if we decide to camp for a few weeks in a national park, I have to travel back towards civilization and a cellphone signal, just to check my email. We read a lot of books, but we both love movies. To keep us entertained, I've collected a hard drive full of just over 500 movies, and close to 300 hours of TV shows. Some are ripped from DVDs that I bought over the years, but most of them were purchased and downloaded from Apple.

For the last several years, I've had a real hate on for iTunes. So far as software goes, it's twitchy, slow and far from user friendly. I can't count how many times that iTunes has lost the artwork for the movies that I own. It makes me a little nuts. I also absolutely loathe iOS 11's TV app. Read the rest

Bad design: This is the menu where a wrong click triggered the Hawaii missile alert Saturday

Honolulu Civil Beat tweeted this image of the menu page where an Emergency Management Agency employee accidentally clicked the wrong item and triggered a public emergency missile alert.

According to Honolulu Civil Beat, "The operator clicked the PACOM (CDW) State Only link. The drill link is the one that was supposed to be clicked... The BMD False Alarm link is the (newly) added feature to prevent further mistakes." Read the rest

How PowerPoint was created

In 1987, a company called Forethought, founded by two ex-Apple marketing managers, rolled out PowerPoint and business meetings have never been the same since. Over at IEEE Spectrum, David C. Brock tells the story:

(Robert Gaskins) envisioned the user creating slides of text and graphics in a graphical, WYSIWYG environment, then outputting them to 35-mm slides, overhead transparencies, or video displays and projectors, and also sharing them electronically through networks and electronic mail. The presentation would spring directly from the mind of the business user, without having to first transit through the corporate art department.

While Gaskins’s ultimate aim for this new product, called Presenter, was to get it onto IBM PCs and their clones, he and (Dennis) Austin soon realized that the Apple Macintosh was the more promising initial target. Designs for the first version of Presenter specified a program that would allow the user to print out slides on Apple’s newly released laser printer, the LaserWriter, and photocopy the printouts onto transparencies for use with an overhead projector...

In April 1987, Forethought introduced its new presentation program to the market very much as it had been conceived, but with a different name. Presenter was now PowerPoint 1.0—there are conflicting accounts of the name change—and it was a proverbial overnight success with Macintosh users. In the first month, Forethought booked $1 million in sales of PowerPoint, at a net profit of $400,000, which was about what the company had spent developing it. And just over three months after PowerPoint’s introduction, Microsoft purchased Forethought outright for $14 million in cash.

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Adobe to (finally) pull plug on Flash, for real this time

Farewell, Flash. Adobe's once-dominant multimedia format that powered so many restaurant websites and early interactive web games will be mothballed at the end of 2020, the software company said Tuesday. Read the rest

Reasons to switch to Firefox

I keep saying I'm going to de-Google my digital life, quitting services such as Gmail and software such as Chrome. So Joel Lee's recent article, 9 Reasons to Switch From Chrome to Firefox, lights a bit of a fire under my feet. In précis: everything bad about Firefox from a few years back is fixed, and now it is Chrome that is bad.

1. Firefox Is Better for Battery Life 2. Firefox Is Better for Tab-Heavy Users 3. Firefox Knows It’s Just a Browser 4. Firefox Embraces the Open Source Mindset 5. Firefox Actually Cares About Privacy 6. Firefox Allows More Customization 7. Firefox Supports Chrome Extensions 8. Firefox Boasts Unique Extensions 9. Firefox Can Do What Chrome Can (Mostly)

To which I add 10: Fuck AMP.

The guide also points out where Chrome remains superior: the web inspector's better, it's more polished, complex web apps tend to work better in it because they're targeted at it, and of course it integrates well with Google's other services. Read the rest

Watch how this app uses AI to colorize vintage photos

This fancy interactive deep colorization software harnesses AI to fill in colors on a black and white photo with just a few inputs. Watch this cool demo. Read the rest

Video explains what GitHub is and how it works

GitHub is service that helps groups of software developers make changes to code without screwing everything up. This is a good video that explains what GitHub is and how it works. Read the rest

Make trippy abstract animation with free procedural compositing software

Ted Wiggin created stella nova, a beautiful demo of his Rose Engine, a tool for procedural compositing. Read the rest

New 3D printing config dramatically reduces print time

Autodesk’s Project Escher allows multiple 3D printers to manufacture the same object simultaneously via a software "conductor." Read the rest

Microsoft video shows how a blind software engineer uses AI to 'see' the world

Meet Saqib, a Microsoft dev in London who lost the use of his eyes at age 7. Here's a neat little profile of his artificial intelligence development work from Microsoft Cognitive Services: Read the rest

Tracery - a JavaScript library to generate stories

Tracery is a JavaScript library that automatically generates stories by assembling words from a glossary. Kate Compton, a PhD candidate in computer science wrote it. Learn more about Tracery in this interactive tutorial at the Crystal Code Palace.

Here's a one-button conversation game called Interruption Junction. It was created by Mx. Dietrich Squinkifer using Tracery. Instructions: "Click repeatedly or mash the spacebar to interrupt." Don't let your character fade away! Read the rest

The perfect Emacs setup

Everything you don't need to know about the legendary expandable text editor, courtesy of @ieure. Read the rest

Pixar's Renderman released for free

Pixar has released its Renderman imaging software to the public free to download. This version is identical to the software it uses on it's own films, which was invented in-house, and is used today by major film and video game studios for animation and visual effects. This free license is for non-commercial use only, which includes show reels and student films.

Free Non-Commercial RenderMan can be used for research, education, evaluation, plug-in development, and any personal projects that do not generate commercial profits. Free Non-Commercial RenderMan is also fully featured, without watermark, time limits, or other user limitations.

Pixar is also launching a Renderman Community Site to share knowledge and assets, showcase work, and support all the new users bound to take advantage of this unique opportunity.

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Gnupg needs your support!

Gnu Privacy Guard (GPG, the free/open version of PGP) relies on donations to pay developers to keep the project alive and viable; as one of its millions of users, I am grateful and indebted to the people who keep it alive and that's why I've just donated to the project. Read the rest

A Talk with Threes App Designer Greg Wohlwend (New Disruptors 74)

Greg Wohlwend co-created the popular game Threes. He talks with host Glenn Fleishman about the joy of success, the burden of being independent, and the problems with parasites.

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