Adobe CTO likens Apple to 19th-century railroad

invisibleSHIELD case for iPad“Apple Inc.’s recent competitive behavior is similar to that of a 19th-century railroad company, Adobe Systems Inc.’s top technology executive said Wednesday,” John Letzing reports for MarketWatch.

“‘Apple’s playing this strategy where they want to create a walled garden’ around the Internet, Adobe Chief Technology Officer Kevin Lynch remarked at a tech conference in San Francisco. He then compared the company’s moves to the deployment of railways with varying gauges in the 1800s, which precluded compatibility with the trains of rivals,” Letzing reports. “‘If you look at what’s going on right now, it’s kind of like railroads in the 1800s,’ Lynch said.”

Letzing reports, “‘I don’t think it’s the role of the company to exercise that judgment over what people are making,’ Lynch said to a smattering of applause, while charging that Apple’s practices are ‘preventing healthy competition.'”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We liken Adobe to a software company run by lazy illogical ingrates.


  1. So desiring content delivered via an open standard vice a proprietary bloated piece of outdated garbage is akin to railroads of years past. Adobe CEO is nuts at best – sell short on adobe ?

  2. @ jalopy

    You got it…that’s the key…unbundle Adobe so we can get the best application operating unencumbered from the 19th or 18th Century mindset.

  3. I’m a marketing consultant and designer. I’m running cs4 and it completely sucks. Going back to cs3 and sure as hell have no interest in cs5.

    I really hope some company comes along and tears adobe a new one. So pissed at them. Crappy product, crappy service, crappy mindset.

  4. Adobe, You’re really asking for it.

    You will loose this war so miserably, that it would be a lesson for the ages…

    You want an all out war? You have no allies.

    You will collapse. start saving those exorbitant upgrade $$$, because you’ll be paying high legal fees to defend against every one and a few class actions, while selling less upgrades to pissed off users.

  5. I think the railroad analogy is a perfect example of competition in action. If Adobe believes that “Apple Railroad” is laying an incompatible “track” in the marketplace, then Adobe should be unconcerned, as the market would ultimately render “Apple Railroad” obsolete.

    But clearly, Adobe IS concerned. Which belies that they believe that their own “tracks” may not be the guage of the future.

    If Adobe wants an analogy to describe what’s happening int he tech sector right now, try this: Adobe is fiddling with building railroads while Apple is perfecting the Lear Jet…

  6. To bad the latest facts show adobes flash losing marketshare to H.264 big time. It looks like adobes railroad is coming to a dead end. While Apples railroad is expanding with no end In sight. Apple looks to the best technology to do the job. Adobe looks at the same old thing over and over.

  7. “‘Apple’s playing this strategy where they want to create a walled garden’ around the Internet”

    So, by attempting to steer people towards OPEN standards Apple is trying to create a walled garden? Huh?

    Magic word: living – This fool is living in denial.

  8. The problem with this “railroad” analogy is that the gage of the tracks are analogous to today’s HTML Open Standards … they are the conduit to the media product.

    To continue the analogy, Apple has called that only locomotives with the Apple set of controls (Deadman’s Switch, etc) is licensed for use. Otherwise, go use someone else’s train.

    Adobe’s Flash klunge is an attempted replacement for Apple’s engineer’s controls of the locomotive – – and effectively, Adobe is saying “Trust Us” (with the locomotive’s controls), and Apple is simply saying “No”.


  9. No, Mr. Lynch, Apple is trying to keep the Interstate highway system open to all consumers, regardless of which car they choose to drive — a marked contrast to making everyone drive a Flashmobile.

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