History of Adobe InDesign

InDesign is one of the Adobe’s family of products. It is a versatile desktop publishing application that gives you pixel-perfect control over design and typography (“Adobe InDesign CS6”, n.d.). It can be used to create works such as flyers, magazines, brochures, posters, books and newspapers. Production artists and graphic designers are the principal users, creating and laying out periodical publications, posters, and print media (Wikipedia, 2012).


In late 1994, Adobe InDesign evolved from Adobe Pagemaker, an earlier version of the Adobe desktop publishing program that, while well-meaning in its purpose, proved limiting, especially to users with little graphic design experience. In 1998, Adobe InDesign has taken the place of Quark Express as the standard for desktop publishing software in creative print industries such as news, advertising and public relations. It was code-named “K2” and was released as InDesign 1.0 in August 1999 (Pearce, 2008).

In 2002, InDesign was the first Mac OS X-native desktop publishing (DTP) software. In version 3 (InDesign CS), it received a boost in distribution by being bundled with Photoshop, Illustrator, and Acrobat in the Creative Suite.

InDesign exports documents in Adobe’s Portable Document Format (PDF) and has multilingual support. It was the first DTP application to support Unicode for text processing, advanced typography with OpenType fonts, advanced transparency features, layout styles, optical margin alignment, and cross-platform scripting using JavaScript.

https://i2.wp.com/www.osp.ru/data/585/716/1238/087_1.jpgLater versions of the software introduced new file formats. To support the new features, especially typographic, introduced with InDesign CS, both the program and its document format are not backward-compatible. Instead, InDesign CS2 has the backward-compatible .inx format, an XML-based document representation. InDesign CS versions updated with the 3.1 April 2005 update can read InDesign CS2-saved files exported to the .inx format. The InDesign Interchange format does not support versions earlier than InDesign CS.


Adobe developed InDesign CS3 (and Creative Suite 3) as universal binary software compatible with native Intel and PowerPC Mac machines in 2007, two years after the announced 2005 schedule, inconveniencing Intel-Mac early-adopters. Adobe CEO Bruce Chizen had announced that “Adobe will be first with a complete line of universal applications.” The CS2 Mac version had code tightly integrated to the PPC architecture, and not natively compatible with the Intel processors in Apple’s new machines, so porting the products to another platform was more difficult than had been anticipated. Adobe developed the CS3 application integrating Macromedia products (2005), rather than recompiling CS2 and simultaneously developing CS3 (Wikipedia, 2012).

By Ibrahim Alghunaim

Useful Links:



Adobe InDesign. (n.d.). In Wikipedia. Retrieved June 12, 2012, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adobe_InDesign
Adobe InDesign CS6: What is InDesign. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.adobe.com/products/indesign.html
Pearce, M. (2008, June). InDesign History. Retrieved from http://lowendmac.com/software/i/indesign.html


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