Adobe Creative Suite: The history

We've taken a look back to see where Adobe Creative Suite has been and where it's going

It's been 20 years since Adobe 1.0 was released, and graphics professionals everywhere are still using Adobe's products to produce videos, Web sites, images and other creative material. We've taken a look back to see where Adobe Creative Suite has been and where it's going.

1986: The first iteration of Adobe Illustrator, aka "Illustrator 88," is released for the Macintosh.

1987: Thomas Knoll, with help from his brothers Glen and John, begins work on a Mac program that forms the basis for Photoshop.

1989: 200 copies of an early version of Photoshop named "Image Pro" ships with scanners made by Barneyscan (now defunct).

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Illustrator 2.0 is released for both Mac and Windows, but the Windows version develops along a different path until version 7.

1990: After being turned away by Mac software makers Aldus and Supermac, the Brothers Knoll license Photoshop to Adobe. Adobe Photoshop 1.0 for the Mac is released in February. John Knoll's "effects" for the program are moved out into separate add-ons, referred to as "plug-ins."

1991: Photoshop 2.0 is released, and features CMYK color support -- crucial to its eventual adoption as a print and photography cornerstone.

Premiere 1.0 for the Mac is released.

1992: Photoshop 2.5 comes out, with some stability fixes, support for 16-bit color and -- most importantly -- support for Windows 3.1.

Premiere 2.0 is released, with QuickTime support, SMTPE time code and 16-bit audio.

1993: Premiere 3.0 emerges, with enhanced preview capabilities and support for up to 99 audio (and 97 video) tracks. Premiere 1.0 for Windows emerges in September of the year, although its features are minimal compared to the Mac version.

1994: Photoshop 3.0 adds layers, possibly Photoshop's biggest single innovation apart from plug-ins.

1996: Photoshop 4.0 introduces macros.

Macromedia releases the first version of Flash, originally titled "FutureSplash." (Adobe acquires Macromedia, and Flash along with it, in 2005.)

1997: Macromedia releases Dreamweaver 1.0, for the Mac only.

Illustrator version 7 is released for both Mac and Windows, the first parallel release of the program on both platforms.

1998: Photoshop 5.0 premieres with color management, editable type layers and a greatly improved undo function.

Dreamweaver 1.2 comes out for both Windows and Mac.

2000: Photoshop's 6.0 release.

2001: Adobe spins off Photoshop Elements, a simplified version of Photoshop aimed at users with relatively undemanding needs. Elements will continue to sell alongside Photoshop for a fraction of its price and eventually become nearly as full-featured.

2002: Macromedia releases Flash MX (Flash 6), the first version of Flash to support video.

2003: Photoshop 8 is now the first edition of Photoshop CS, or Creative Suite -- the beginnings of Adobe making Photoshop an integrated part of its expanding product lineup.

2004: Photoshop CS2 introduces the "Smart Object," which allows a layer to be converted into an object and resized non-destructively.

2005: Adobe acquires Macromedia. Dreamweaver 9 becomes Dreamweaver CS3 and replaces Adobe's GoLive product, and Flash 9 becomes Flash CS3 Professional.

2007: After three years' wait, Photoshop CS3 appears in two iterations: Standard, for "regular" professionals (e.g., photographers and commercial artists) and Extended (for scientific and medical use). Adobe adds support for many cameras that produce raw picture files and an expanded selection of tools for producing web graphics.

2008: Photoshop CS4 adds GPU acceleration.

Dreamweaver CS4 is released.

Premiere Pro CS4 adds AVCHD video, support for Final Cut Pro projects and the ability to directly import unprotected content from DVDs.

2010: Photoshop CS5 is released.

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