Cloud-computing plan could help Adobe Lightroom photographers

From CNET: Microsoft's Office 365. Google's Gmail. Facebook's Messenger. These and other modern software products use a cloud-computing approach that lets you work anywhere with a network connection -- you can use your phone, your office PC, your friend's laptop that you borrow for 10 minutes.

Now it looks like Adobe Systems' Lightroom, one of the most popular photo-editing programs around, will follow suit. Lightroom today is locked to a single personal computer, but a job posting indicates Adobe wants to loosen that link.

"Adobe is building the next generation of cloud-first, device-connected products for people who care about photography," Adobe said in the job posting. "To help with this mission, the Lightroom team is looking for a desktop software engineer to help extend and enhance our industry-leading photography platform."

A cloud-first Lightroom would be good news if you're a photographer. It would let you send your main work machine in for repairs, better protect your photo catalogs against equipment theft, loss or fire, and make it possible to retrieve a particular shot when traveling without that beefy external drive that houses your photo catalog.

But the job post also shows how hard it is to move complex software into the modern age. In 2012, Adobe moved its software for creative pros like illustrators, photographers and moviemakers to a subscription model called the Creative Cloud. Paying $50 a month gets you access to the whole shebang, and $10 a month gets you Photoshop and Lightroom. But only gradually has Adobe added the cloud part of the Creative Cloud.

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