Hedley Finger wrote: > The original discussion was, generally, about what Adobe needed to do > to find out what functionality their customers would need in the > future. > > I attempted to make the point that a study of the third-party plugins > would indicate to Adobe the gaps in FrameMaker's functionality that > they need to address, and chose indexing plugins as an example where > there are many independent plugins to improve this functionality.
While I agree that plugin usage indicates shortfalls in the current product, I don't accept that Adobe should take direction from that. Most of the plugins mentioned have been developed to support hardcopy publishing, but Adobe know as well as anyone that that market is in chronic decline. Putting a lot of effort into supporting hardcopy would be throwing good money after bad. I like what Adobe has been doing, adding XSLT support and improving their XML handling. Those are the sorts of changes that will keep it alive, but they're only first steps. In another ten years, FrameMaker will probably need to be a web-based application focused on connecting and incorporating information from multiple sources and maybe making it look consistent to improve the user's experience. Or something else - I don't know. Either way, you can be pretty sure that it's not going to be an application for the lossy process of converting information into patterns on paper to be posted to someone who will slowly read and interpret it back into information. (Yeah, I know, PDF, HTML, but that's mostly just paper-to-pixels.) We had one of the senior XML people from Microsoft in Redmond presenting to our developers yesterday - he was showing off things like round-tripping, incorporation of microformats into Word and generating Word documents from java, all running in Linux to illustrate how little dependency there was on Microsoft technology. It was *very* slick. Nobody can afford to sit back and wait anymore - the bar gets raised too frequently for anyone to recover. Go long, Adobe!! Blow our socks off!! -- Regards, Marcus Carr email: mcarr at allette.com.au ___________________________________________________________________ Allette Systems (Australia) www: http://www.allette.com.au ___________________________________________________________________ "Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." - Einstein