Adobe’s John Nack is leaving the company after 14 years to work at Google. Nack was on the Photoshop team for 8 years, working on features like Camera Raw, Smart Objects and Adobe Bridge. He’s been acting as Principal Product Manager at Adobe since then, focusing on its mobile app efforts like Photoshop for tablets.
In a blog post, Nack says he’s moving over to Google to work on its digital photography team. This is a fairly big coup for Google as Nack has a deep knowledge of what makes Photoshop tick and has acted as an evangelist for the editing suite and its community for years.
“Merlin Mann once asked me, “What do you want ten times more of?” I knew the answer: Impact. I’m so proud of the impact I’ve had at Adobe,” says Nack. “From Smart Objects to Photoshop’s first-ever public beta* to countless little tweaks over the years (“I swear because I care!!”), I’m proud of that legacy. Now, though, I’ll get a chance to work on some new projects. It’s about doing something very different from, and I think complementary to**, the work I’ve done at Adobe.”
In a footnote he adds that “Adobe & Google have enjoyed great collaboration for years, and I hope to take that even further. There’s so much we can all do to help photographers & storytellers of every sort.”
Unfortunately, Nack indicates that — as a side effect of him joining Google — his Adobe blog, which I’ve visited regularly over the years, will be going silent.
Google, of course, has been making an intense effort to shore up the capabilities of its Google+ photo suite. The platform now does an insane amount of cloud processing on photographs to edit and enhance them — something Nack could doubtless aid them with.
Google’s recent acquisition of Snapseed gave it a great core of edit tools to work with and its absorption of Picasa into Google+ has made for an expansive and robust online photo solution. For a lot of folks I speak to, Google+ photos is a reason to use Google+ at all — something that many have been struggling with since its inception.
It seems Google is pulling the thread further on creating a definitive online editing suite and repository for photos. Provided you’re comfortable boarding the Google+ train that is.