Mountain View, CA Ð Silicon Graphics (SGI) is poised to seize the workstation desktop-publishing initiative with a combination that has long eluded NeXT: high-performance computing, Display PostScript, and industry-standard desktop-publishing applications.
Although Display PostScript was once NeXT's ace for the desktop-publishing market, the imaging software is now available on machines from competitors such as DEC, Sun Microsystems, IBM, and, since September, SGI's high-performance workstations. At the same time, Adobe Systems said Illustrator would be available for SGI this year, followed early next year by Photoshop. SGI also confirmed that QuarkXPress, a popular Macintosh page-layout program, will be available for SGI's IRIS Indigo in 1993.
These announcements lift the veil on SGI's publishing strategy: Give current Macintosh users the same applications they have been using, but on a workstation that is two to five times faster.
"Our goal is to get the mainstream Macintosh applications that those people use to do 80 percent of their work," said Sue Egnoto, SGI's marketing manager for graphic arts and publishing. Mimicking NeXT's lead, SGI also plans full connectivity with Macintosh networks.
Sun Microsystems is also in hot pursuit of some UNIX publishing gold. While Sun's publishing presence has so far been confined to high-end turnkey systems and as servers in large installations, Altsys said this fall that Virtuoso was being ported to Sun's Open Look environment for release next year. At the same time, Adobe is working on ports of Photoshop and Illustrator, said Chris Hunt, a senior product marketing manager in Adobe's applications division.
The ports of Photoshop were done by SGI and Sun employees working on-site at Adobe, Hunt says. Adobe made the same offer to NeXT, but NeXT declined to provide engineering assistance.