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Adobe preannounces Creative Suite 5

Since there's nothing more embarrassing than having a big ol' Web event where no one shows up, Adobe has decided to tell the world that it plans to announce CS5 on April 12 to make sure you can all make it to Adobe TV at 8am PT.

I have to admit--I'm in complete awe at the capability of Adobe's PR machine to instigate and maintain a steady buzz about a product months before it's even official without ever having to lie, pretend to leak, or have a well-known evangelist equipped with a reality distortion field. For a product like Adobe's Creative Suite, home to popular applications like Photoshop and Flash, there's never a doubt that a new version will arrive,  and it's on a pretty regular timetable of every 18 to 24 months. That means Adobe can't rely on the will-they-or-won't-they school of generating buzz that works so well for Apple. Instead, months in advance, Adobe starts touring and posting short technology demos of features that may--or may not--be in the next new version, wowing watchers and priming them to loosen their purse strings, along with dropping tiny feature tidbits like breadcrumbs leading you to the announcement. (The latest of these is a video of product manager Bryan Hughes demonstrating new capabilities of Content-Aware Scaling.)

In its latest move, Adobe has announced that the CS5 launch will take place on April 12, and that it wants you to tune in at 8 a.m. PT (11 a.m. ET) to watch online; you'll need to register first to be able to watch. But as long as the existence of CS5 is no longer "secret," then I'll take the opportunity to tell you to check back here at the same time for our reviews and previews of at least the major applications in the suite. There's my breadcrumb.