20 Years of Adobe InDesign

Adobe InDesign 1.0: Celebrating two decades of innovation.

1999 introduced so many moments that transformed our world. This was the year US Women’s Soccer team won their first FIFA World Cup, the year we learned about Napster, and most significantly, the year InDesign came to life. It’s been 20 years since the introduction of InDesign, and the industry for creative professionals has changed forever.

“If anyone had told me 20 years ago that we would have a fundamental impact on the publishing industry, I wouldn’t have believed them,” said John Warnock, co-founder of Adobe.

InDesign was introduced to the world on the heels of the desktop-publishing revolution when personal computing and print publishing became more accessible to the masses. For the first time, individuals, businesses, and organizations—large and small—could directly design, layout, and publish almost any content effortlessly. InDesign’s early releases moved the industry forward with its support of advanced OpenType fonts, transparency features, and optical margin alignment.

20 years of innovations

We’ve come a long way since 1999. While InDesign wasn’t the first to provide a desktop-publishing solution, it focused on providing creative professionals with industry-first innovations. At the time, InDesign was the first desktop-publishing app to let publishers design with transparency. MacWorld published this about InDesign in 2001: “The most impressive feature in the coming InDesign update is object transparency. It lets you change the opacity of anything on your page—text, boxes, or pictures.” This innovation years ago is now something we take for granted.

InDesign 1.0 debuts on August 31, 1999.

Today, InDesign continues to launch innovations that one day will also seem mundane. Predictive-design components powered by intelligent Adobe Sensei algorithms will make designers more productive and faster than before. Content-Aware Fit, a feature built on Adobe Sensei, intelligently determines the focal point and automatically crops images to fit a document’s design.

InDesign 2.0 ad campaign.

New innovations continue to let us do things that were impossible years ago. Back in 1999, people around the world, from the US to Japan, were both curious and excited about the possibilities of InDesign. In a future of increasingly more powerful hardware and artificial intelligence capabilities, you can be assured that we’ve only scratched the surface of what’s possible with InDesign and the full Adobe Creative Cloud.

Celebrating with the community

As we look back over InDesign’s years in the community and the people who got us here, we thank everyone who has used the product. Millions of brilliant creative minds like yourself have supported us by using InDesign to create amazing things, from ebooks to brochures to magazines. Your feedback and continued support compel us to create the best experience possible for you.

As we celebrate this milestone, on behalf of the entire Adobe InDesign team, we thank you for your support over the past 20 years. Your passion, hard work, and innovation motivate us, and we couldn’t be more honored to be your partner.