Yesterday, December 5th 2005, Adobe bought Macromedia.

Macromedia is dead. Adobe lives. Long live the king.

Who knows what this will mean (I’m no industry analyst—who has time for such a thing when one is serious about learning), but it’s a very big deal because one of the learning-and-performance field’s biggest technology-platform companies (Macromedia) just got blasted into the mainstream. Sure, they had Flash and Dreamweaver before, but this is much bigger given Adobe’s breadth and depth.

My biggest hope is that Adobe (with Macromedia) puts more R&D muscle into learning design (and understanding human learning) to create really breakthrough learning innovations. PDF files may be the secret hidden killer learning app of today. With a little jiggering, the melding of print, multimedia, and iLMS’s might be tomorrow’s killer learning app. (I just made those two terms up, so I better explain ("killer learning app" and "iLMS"). An iLMS is an individual Learning Management System. It enables individual people to manage their own learning. More about this concept in later posts. It’s bubbling up, but needs a bit more fermentation.

My biggest fear is that Adobe (with Macromedia) ignores human learning and assumes that a low-budget it’s-fine-the-way-it-is mentality is all they need to do to maintain their market share. If they take this attitude, they deserve an eternity of purgatorious elearning page-turners.

To read more about the acquisition, click here.