Adobe has recently been making headlines on Forbes and TechCrunch with some major updates to its Creative Cloud, including Adobe Muse, a software allowing designers to create standards-based websites without having to write any code. Since Adobe Muse – like any other code-free website creation application – is of particular interest to SuperbWebsiteBuilders, we decided to take some time to learn more about the updates, and the platform as a whole.
We recently had a chance to interview Danielle Beaumont, Adobe Muse Group Product Manager, who has been managing innovative applications in the web and design space for more than 20 years. In this interview Danielle shares her vision for the product and offers some interesting insights into the future of the platform, among other topics of interest.
SWB: For those who are unaware, what is Adobe Muse?
Danielle: Adobe Muse CC empowers graphic designers to create unique, standards-based websites — without writing a single line of code.
SWB: Compared to competing products, what do you think makes Muse such a great product for designers? Why Muse?
Danielle: Graphic designers are finding themselves right at home with Adobe Muse, and have found it easy to get started. Adobe Muse allows free form design, similar to designing print layouts, using familiar features and keyboard shortcuts from InDesign and Photoshop. They can design with hundreds of web fonts and built-in tools to add interactivity like navigation menus, slideshows, and contact forms.
Plus, Adobe Muse partners and the design community provide a host of templates, starter files, new widgets and design elements that they can download and use to jump start their work. The best part is that Adobe Muse provides new features and updates regularly, so that designers can trust that their sites keep up with evolving web standards and trends.
SWB: The web design software market is a rapidly changing one, what changes are you making to stay competitive?
Danielle: The Adobe Muse team is structured in a way to keep up with the latest web design trends, technology, and standards. For example, Adobe Muse allowed designers to create unique smartphone and tablet versions of their sites in December 2012, in response to the rapid adoption of mobile devices. In June 2013, Adobe Muse delivered the ability to create scroll effects without writing code, and added the ability to apply opacity and fading to scroll elements, and apply scroll effects to Adobe Edge animations and slideshows just a few months later.
In June 2014, Adobe Muse was completely re-built as a native application with 64-bit support, which allowed Muse to keep up with the latest operating system updates such as Mavericks OS X 10.9 released in Oct 2013, hardware updates such as the introduction of Retina displays in 2013, and web browser updates that are ongoing from all major browsers. The benefit for designers is that they only need to design once – they simply re-publish to take advantage of updates.
SWB: What do you think the platform is missing in terms of functionality?
Danielle: Adobe Muse is a young sapling in a forest of redwoods. In other words, it’s a very new product compared to Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, so there’s still room to fully develop the feature set to meet the needs of designers. For example, providing productivity tools like collect for output, and improving integration with other Adobe apps like Illustrator and services like Kuler.
SWB: What is the most underappreciated feature of Adobe Muse?
Danielle: Designers are able to create unique layouts for mobile devices, without having to worry about cross-platform, cross-browser, or cross-device consistency. It just works, Muse handles it for them. This is very subtle, very powerful, and will continue to become more so over time.
SWB: What are your favorite Muse-based websites?
Danielle: With the limitless creativity we’re seeing, we could never pick favorites! But, we encourage you to take a look at the Muse Site of the Day at http://muse.adobe.com/site-of-the-day.
Take a look at recent SOD designs including:
- Al Jazeera English long-form story.
- LeMonde, leading French newspaper’s article on the history of football.
- Showtime series ‘Years of Living Dangerously’.
SWB: What can we expect to see from Adobe Muse in the coming 1-2 years? What would be the ideal scenario?
Danielle: We see Adobe Muse as a growing, vibrant, and engaged market.. especially with the recent availability of Muse serial number installation support, which will make Creative Cloud Education and Enterprise deployments easier. We’re looking forward to what that increased access will bring from students and designers.
SWB: Thanks for your time, Danielle. We appreciate the opportunity to speak with you.
Danielle: Thank you!