Zhe Lin gets his 100th U.S. patent at Adobe

Today, we are celebrating Adobe Research’s Zhe Lin, who has become the first employee in Adobe history to have 100 Adobe U.S. patents issued!

Zhe, a Principal Scientist who has been with Adobe since 2009, has patents that cover a wide range of technologies in computer vision and imaging, including topics such as image search, organization and editing, and on problems such as object, text and face detection, segmentation, person recognition, image quality and defect measurement, image captioning, upsampling, denoising and deblurring. Many of Zhe’s ideas use deep learning to endow machines with high-level image understanding. One of his ongoing research collaborations, DeepFill, was featured at Adobe MAX 2017. DeepFill fills in missing sections in photos and enables users to edit images by drawing on them by tapping into deep learning methods.

His patented ideas have been used in many of our products, including Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Lightroom, Adobe Experience Manager and After Effects. One of his biggest product impacts has been on Adobe Stock with his contributions to image search and tagging.

Secrets to his success

Zhe partnered with numerous talented colleagues and acknowledged their work on his wide-ranging patents.

“Most kudos to my excellent collaborators, including many researchers in the lab as well as my former interns and professors,” Zhe said.

But what is the secret to his productivity? Zhe puts it this way: “I think the following are important factors which helped me the most: Close collaborations with many great researchers and product team engineers; hiring of very motivated and talented interns (several of whom became full-time at Adobe) and assigning them good projects; time spent thinking and discussing problems; the encouraging and flexible research and innovation environment and culture in Adobe Research; strong research support (resources, internships, collaborations, etc.) from the leadership team and research programs.”

When asked what this milestone means to him, it’s clear that Zhe is thinking beyond this current achievement. He said, “I am very proud of getting to this milestone in patents! I hope I can continue this momentum and develop more innovative and useful technologies for Adobe’s products in the future.”

A monumental achievement

Our Adobe Leadership Team also made clear how extraordinary this accomplishment is — and how much value Zhe brings to Adobe.

“Since our founding, Adobe has been a company of inventors,” Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen said. “Our mission has always been about delivering innovation to billions of customers and inventing the future. It’s brilliant researchers like Zhe who embody this spirit of innovation at Adobe. Reaching the 100 patent milestone is an amazing achievement and we’re grateful to Zhe for his contributions to the company and the industry.”

“This is really a monumental achievement that Zhe shares with all of his co-inventors,” said Scott Cohen, Sr. Principal Scientist and Zhe’s manager. “It is especially impressive as Zhe joined Adobe Research just 10 years ago in May 2009, and his first filed patent application was in March 2012.”

“It is very exciting to see Zhe reach this goal. Having 100 patents awarded to you, especially in this short period of time, is an amazing accomplishment,” said Dana Rao, Adobe’s EVP and General Counsel. “Patents are essential to ensure Adobe’s significant investment in R&D is secure, and Zhe’s contributions are a critical part of that strategy.”

Zhe’s inventions have advanced our tools and technologies, impacting numerous products. They are critical in propelling and protecting our cutting-edge work and we can’t wait to see what he and our other inventors achieve next!

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