Macromedia was an American graphics, multimedia and web development
software company (1992–2005) headquartered in San Francisco,
California that produced such products as Flash and Dreamweaver. It
was purchased by its rival
Adobe Systems on December 3, 2005.
4 See also
6 External links
Macromedia originated in the 1992 merger of
Authorware Inc. (makers of
MacroMind-Paracomp (makers of Macromind Director).
Director, an interactive multimedia-authoring tool used to make
presentations, animations, CD-ROMs and information kiosks, served as
Macromedia's flagship product until the mid-1990s.
Macromedia's principal product in the interactive learning market. As
the Internet moved from a university research medium to a commercial
Macromedia began working to web-enable its existing tools and
develop new products like Dreamweaver.
Macromedia created Shockwave, a
Director-viewer plugin for web browsers. The first multimedia playback
in Netscape's browser was a Director plug-in.
Sun's Java Programming Language in October 1995. By 2002, Macromedia
produced more than 20 products and had 30 offices in 13 different
In January 1995,
Altsys Corporation after Adobe
Systems announced a merger with Altsys' business partner, the Aldus
Altsys was the developer of the vector-drawing program
FreeHand, which had been licensed by
Aldus for marketing and sales.
Because of the similarities with Adobe Illustrator, the Federal Trade
Commission issued a complaint in October 1994 ordering a divestiture
of FreeHand back to Altsys. With Macromedia's acquisition of
Altsys, it received FreeHand thus expanding its product line of
multimedia graphics software to include illustration and design
graphics software. FreeHand's vector graphics rendering engine and
other software components within the program would prove useful to
Macromedia in the development of Fireworks.
In March 1996,
Macromedia acquired iBand Software, makers of the
HTML authoring tool and application server. Macromedia
developed a new HTML-authoring tool, Dreamweaver, around portions of
the Backstage codebase and released the first version in 1997. At the
time, most professional web authors preferred to code
HTML by hand
using text editors because they wanted full control over the source.
Dreamweaver addressed this with its "Roundtrip HTML" feature, which
attempted to preserve the fidelity of hand-edited source code during
visual edits, allowing users to work back and forth between visual and
code editing. Over the next few years
Dreamweaver became widely
adopted among professional web authors, though many still preferred to
Microsoft FrontPage remained a strong competitor among
amateur and business users.
Macromedia acquired FutureWave Software, makers of FutureSplash
Animator, in November 1996.
FutureSplash Animator was an animation
tool originally developed for pen-based computing devices. Because of
the small size of the FutureSplash viewer application, it was
particularly suited for download over the Internet, where most users,
at the time, had low-bandwidth connections.
Macromedia renamed Splash
Macromedia Flash, and following the lead of Netscape, distributed
the Flash Player as a free browser plugin in order to quickly gain
market share. As of 2005, more computers worldwide had the Flash
Player installed than any other Web media format, including Java,
RealNetworks and Windows Media Player. As Flash matured,
Macromedia's focus shifted from marketing it as a graphics and media
tool to promoting it as a Web application platform, adding scripting
and data access capabilities to the player while attempting to retain
its small footprint.
Macromedia logo used in 1999
In December 1999,
Macromedia acquired traffic analysis software
company Andromedia Corporation.
Web development company Allaire was
acquired in 2001 and
Macromedia added several popular server and Web
developments tools to its portfolio, including ColdFusion, a web
application server based on the CFML language, JRun, a Java EE
application server, and HomeSite, an
HTML code editor that was also
bundled with Dreamweaver.
Macromedia acquired the web conferencing company Presedia and
continued to develop and enhance their Flash-based online
collaboration and presentation product offering under the brand
Breeze. Later that year,
Macromedia also acquired help authoring
software company e
Help Corporation, whose products included RoboHelp
and RoboDemo (now Adobe Captivate).
On 18 April 2005,
Adobe Systems announced an agreement to acquire
Macromedia in a stock swap valued at approximately $3.4 billion on the
last trading day before the announcement. The acquisition took place
on 3 December 2005, and Adobe integrated the company's operations,
networks, and customer care organizations shortly thereafter.
On August 22, 1997, stockholders filed a class-action lawsuit in the
California Superior Court in San Francisco, accusing
misleading stockholders on the company's product success and financial
health. A similar suit had been filed a month earlier. The
class-action suit was dismissed by a federal judge on 19 May 1998.
On 10 August 2000, Adobe claimed that
Macromedia violated two of its
patents on tabbed palettes.
Macromedia countered with a claim
that Adobe infringed on Macromedia's patents for a draw-based editor
for Web pages and a hierarchical structure editor for Web sites.
In July 2002, Adobe and
Macromedia reached an agreement that settled
all claims in this series of patent suits.
Bud Colligan became co-founder and CEO of Macromedia, a position
he held until 1997; he served as Board Chairman 1992-1998.
Altsys Corp and CEO James Von Ehr became a Macromedia
vice-president, a position he held until 1997.
1996: Robert K. Burgess was hired as President of Macromedia, and
became CEO in 1997, a position he held until 2005; he served as Board
Chairman 1998-2005, a position he held when the company was acquired
1997: Betsey Nelson became Chief Financial Officer, a position she
Macromedia was acquired by Adobe.
Stephen Elop became Chief Operating Officer.
Stephen Elop had been CEO for three months when Macromedia
announced it would be acquired by Adobe.
Main article: List of
San Francisco Bay Area portal
^ "Adobe to acquire Macromedia". Archived from the original on
2005-04-20. Retrieved 2005-04-18.
^ a b "
Macromedia Company History". Retrieved 2011-02-17.
^ Macromedia’s purchase of
Altsys raises questions. InfoWorld.
1994-11-07. Retrieved 2011-02-11.
Federal Trade Commission
Federal Trade Commission Decisions, Complaint 118 F.," (PDF).
Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-05-24. Retrieved
^ "Flash Player in 2005". ZDNet. Retrieved 2008-12-26.
^ "Acquisition". Adobe Systems. Archived from the original on
2007-06-02. Retrieved 2008-12-29.
^ "Investors sue
Macromedia again". cNet. 1997-09-04. Retrieved
Macromedia shareholder suits dismissed 05-19-98". Marketwatch, The
Wall Street Journal. 1998-05-19.
Macromedia reach agreement in Patent lawsuit". PCMag.
^ "Adobe Wins User Interface Suit Against Macromedia". PCMag.com.
Macromedia wins $4.9m in Adobe patent suit". PCWorld.
Macromedia reach agreement in Patent lawsuit". PCWorld.
^ "Adobe and
Macromedia settle patent lawsuits". Pinsent Masons.
^ "Bud Colligan". NNDB. Retrieved 2011-02-17.
^ "Bud Colligan". CrunchBase. Retrieved 2011-02-17.
^ "Robert K. Burgess". NNDB. Retrieved 2011-02-17.
^ "Profile, Robert K. Burgess". Forbes. Retrieved 2011-02-17.
Stephen Elop Chief Executive Office; Rob Burgess
Continues As Chairman". Macromedia. January 19, 2005. Archived from
the original on February 14, 2011. Retrieved 2011-02-17.
Stephen Elop as Chief Operating Officer; Core
Leadership Team Broadens with New Marketing and Sales Executives".
Goliath Business Knowledge. July 28, 2004. Retrieved 2011-02-17.
^ "How will
Stephen Elop fare at Microsoft?". ComputerWorld. January
11, 2008. Archived from the original on July 8, 2011. Retrieved
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