This Week In Web - 5.16.14

  •   Miki Pacifico

By Miki Pacifico

This week - Adobe wets the bed, and now you can text message 911

Outside of the continued outrage over net neutrality and its recent push through the FCC, it was a relatively slow week for tech and the internet.

Adobe Creative Cloud Went Offline

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The entire suite of Adobe Creative Cloud programs and services went down for over 24 hours for what was described as routine maintenance. Now, 24 hours might not seem like a long period of time unless you are a designer depending on a subscription-based program to meet your deadlines.

When I went to design school there was no such thing as the cloud. My version of the Creative Suite was an offline software and cost a lowly student over $300. Needless to say, this would not have been an issue. In recent years the upgraded versions of the Creative Suite are cloud-based and allow for users to cherry-pick the programs they need rather than purchasing the entire suite.

I currently subscribe to Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign on my home computer, while enjoying an older offline-version of the entire suite on my office computer. I got my subscription during a special and pay approximately $40/mo. for those three programs. Mathematically speaking, it costs more to run my creative software this way, however I get updates every time there is a new release in the program.

The question remains: Is it worth the money you pay to have your program go down for maintenance? Are there reasonable alternatives to Adobe to replace these programs? Is the design world so entrenched in Adobe as a standard that it is, in effect, too big to fail?

I can’t answer that for you. We, as a company, use offline-mode software and we have had no troubles. If you are one of the unfortunate masses affected by the temporary shutdown, I recommend reviewing your internal systems and evaluating for yourself.

Text Messaging 911 May Someday Be Available In Your Area

Emergency Text Message

For those of us with anxiety dreams about someone breaking into your home and pummeling your spouse mercilessly while you hide in a closet, the ability to text message 911 may soon be available in an emergency dispatch near you.

AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon (basically every mobile provider) will be supporting this function. In the event of an emergency you simply put 911 in the number field and type the nature of the emergency and your location in the body of the text.

Not all areas are currently supporting this feature, as the technology to support acceptance of SMS messages has not been enabled in all dispatch offices. You can expect most, if not all, emergency dispatch offices to upgrade to accepting this type of communication in the next six months. In the meantime, calling 911 when possible is the better solution, as texting 911 in an area where SMS is unsupported will result in a bounce-back text notifying you that your message was unable to be sent.

Note, we do not recommend testing out the text message feature without actually having an emergency to report. Another note, teenagers, being grounded is not an emergency so please do not text 911.