Extensis and LizardTech Join Forces
DAM vendor Extensis have just announced that they are to unite with geospatial imaging outfit LizardTech. Extensis CEO Osamu Ikeda, praises the union in an accompanying blog post:
“With Extensis’ market leadership in digital asset and font management solutions combined with LizardTech’s state-of-the-art image compression technology, the united company is uniquely situated to help solve the digital asset challenges of customers across a broad spectrum of industries.” [Read More]
LizardTech was actually a sister company to Extensis, originally acquired by Japanese company Celartem Inc. in the mid-90s, so it’s not strictly an aqcuisition – more of a consolidation of the two outfits operating under the same banner. With regards to image compression, my co-contributor Ralph Windsor, in a review of an update to Extensis last year, picked up on its seemingly incongruous presence, noting that:
“The image compression feature appears confused in terms of its objectives and and what purpose it serves. According to Extensis, this component compresses images to 5% of their original size. My personal take on content-oriented digital assets is that the original file is sacrosanct and you should never modify it. The video appears to suggest that you can replace the original with the compressed option and they offer a justification for this based on storage costs saved. Generating renditions, derivatives or proxies etc (call them what you will) isn’t a problem, but altering the original is dangerous because if the technology fails, you risk losing the only available copy and possibly won’t find out about it for some time (and at the same time when the significance of the asset in question has just increased substantially).” [Read More]
The merging of the two companies sees the Extensis product suite, which includes DAM platform Portfolio and font management software titles Suitcase Fusion and Universal Type Server, extended to include three additional components: GeoExpress – an image compression platform; Express Server – a delivery platform for said images; and GeoViewer – a free, all-in-one viewer for LizardTech’s proprietory MrSID format content.
“Organizations today are investing in digital assets and imagery of all kinds, including photography, aerial, and spatial, to name a few. Fully leveraging these digital files means having an easy and effective way to organize, store, find, and distribute them.” [Read More]
The numerous references to image compression in their press releases might seem a little off-track for what is essentially still a DAM provider, albeit one that has a few new toys at their disposal, unless Extensis are intending to leverage these new features by providing DAM solutions to the aerial and geospatial mapping industry. If this is indeed true, then it might be good news if you’re in that particular niche and looking for a comprehensive set of specialist tools, yet only time will tell whether this new partnership brings any discernible benefits for their existing DAM customers, or whether this dilation of their commercial scope to accommodate new technologies will cause their existing core business operations to become stretched and diluted.Share this Article: