Freehand 4 at the AP p. 29

By: Jim Rosenberg THE ASSOCIATED PRESS has not yet announced plans to upgrade its news graphics to Aldus Freehand 4.
"We worked closely with Aldus on Freehand 4," graphics department director John Monahan said. But not until the package arrived did the AP and others realize that the new version required at least a Macintosh II. Monahan said Aldus never informed the AP of the minimum hardware requirement.
"Some members, we are sure, have only a Mac Plus computer," he said. "We need to measure the effect of a transition to a high-level piece of software that's going to mean that they can't use that [Mac Plus] to edit graphics. It's not just a software upgrade for them, it's also a hardware purchase."
Monahan said the change came as an "unfortunate" surprise "because it meant that we couldn't move as swiftly as we might like."
The AP is examining the matter and expects to inform AP graphics users this summer of its plans ? "in time for editors and publishers to make their capital planning," Monahan said.
While eventual adoption of Freehand 4 is not being ruled out, Monahan allowed that Adobe Systems Inc.'s "bold move" to acquire Aldus Corp. "at least lets us consider other options."
A worst case, the graphics chief said, will be to finish the year using Freehand 3, then move to some other piece of software early next year.
"We want to move ahead," he said, "but we won't move ahead at the cost of hurting newspapers."?


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