Aldus Corporation was a software company that developed desktop publishing (DTP) software. It is known for developing PageMaker, an early product in the desktop publishing field. The company is named after 15th-century Venetian printer Aldus Manutius, and was founded by Jeremy Jaech, Mark Sundstrom, Mike Templeman, Dave Walter, and chairman Paul Brainerd.[1] Aldus Corporation was based in Seattle, Washington.

Aldus Corporation
SuccessorAdobe Systems
FoundedFebruary 1984 (1984-02)
FoundersJeremy Jaech
Mark Sundstrom
Mike Templeman
Dave Walter
Paul Brainerd
DefunctNovember 1994 (1994-11)
Key people
Paul Brainerd, Founder


PageMaker was released in July 1985 and relied on Adobe's PostScript page description language. For output, it used the Apple LaserWriter, a PostScript laser printer. PageMaker for the PC was released in 1986, but by then the Mac was the de facto DTP platform, with Adobe Illustrator (released in 1987) and Adobe Photoshop (released in 1990) completing the suite of graphic design software.

Aldus went on to offer its Illustrator-like program FreeHand, licensed from Altsys (who also developed Fontographer). FreeHand and Illustrator competed with each other for years through multiple releases. This rivalry continued even after the Aldus acquisition, because FreeHand was not included, but Adobe eventually acquired Freehand in 2005 with its acquisition of Macromedia. FreeHand MX was the last version offered by Adobe but is no longer sold or updated.[2]

In early 1990, Aldus bought Silicon Beach Software, acquiring a number of consumer titles for the Macintosh, including SuperPaint, Digital Darkroom, SuperCard, Super3D, and Personal Press (later renamed Adobe Home Publisher). Silicon Beach was located in San Diego, California, and became the Aldus Consumer Division.[3]

In 1993, Aldus bought After Hours Software and incorporated its products, TouchBase Pro and DateBook Pro, into the Aldus Consumer Division.

During the 1990s, QuarkXPress steadily won ground from PageMaker, and it seemed increasingly odd that Adobe  who had created PostScript, so vital to the working of DTP  still did not offer its own page layout application. This was resolved in September 1994 when Adobe purchased Aldus for $446 million.[4] PageMaker has now been discontinued and is no longer supported; existing PageMaker customers were urged to switch to InDesign.

Aldus developed the TIFF and OPI industry standards. The three founders of Visio Corporation left Aldus in 1990 to create the product which later became known as Microsoft Office Visio.



  • ColorCentral  An OPI server
  • PressWise  A digital imposition program
  • PrintCentral  A print output spooler
  • TrapWise  A digital trapping program


  • FreeHand  A vector drawing program
  • Gallery Effects
  • Persuasion  A presentation program
  • PhotoStyler  A bitmap image editor
  • TextureMaker  A program for creating textures/patterns
  • SuperPaint  Painting and vector drawing program
  • Intellidraw  A powerful yet simple drawing program

Aldus Interactive Publishing/CoSA

  • After Effects  A digital motion graphics and compositing program
  • Hitchcock  A professional non-linear video editor, with titling and A/V transitions
  • Fetch  A multimedia database

Aldus Consumer Division

(formerly Silicon Beach Software and After Hours Software)

  • Digital Darkroom photo enhancement software
  • Personal Press consumer desktop publishing software
  • DateBook Pro Calendar management software
  • IntelliDraw A vector drawing program
  • Super3D 3D modeling software
  • SuperCard multimedia authoring environment
  • TouchBase Pro Contact management software


  1. Kvern, Olav Martin; Roth, Stephen (1990). Real World Pagemaker 4. Bantam Books. ISBN 0-553-34874-4.
  2. "FreeHand Support Center".
  4. "ADOBE SYSTEMS REVISES ALDUS ACQUISITION". New York Times. July 15, 1994.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.