MAX Sneaks 2020 — where creativity and innovation knows no bounds

Adobe MAX 2020 logo

It feels like Adobe MAX 2020 came and went quicker than the AI powering many of our latest Creative Cloud product features. Our annual creative conference had its fair share of firsts this year — we went completely digital, MAX was free to the public, and the fan-favorite tradition, Sneaks, was live-streamed.

Sneaks is something like an Adobe “American Idol.” In just one hour, our imaginative researchers and engineers remove us from our current reality and teleport us to a technological future where anything is possible. These Sneaks are cutting edge, early tech explorations that explore what’s possible. Over the years, some have even made their way into Adobe products.

With the help of ten brave employees and our co-hosts, celebrity special guest Chelsea Handler and Adobe’s Paul Trani, we unveiled nine dreamy technologies that push the boundaries of creative innovation.

We know that not everyone could tune-in during MAX (just blame it on the WIFI), so we’ve recreated the experience in a bite-sized recap below. Check out each of these wild, crazy, and impressive Sneaks and let us know what you think by sharing their tags on social!

#SharpShotSneak — powered by Adobe Sensei

Thanks to smartphones, every one of us is equipped with a decently high-quality camera that fits in the palm of our hand. Are they convenient? Yes. Do they have their shortcomings? Also, yes. Notably, the exasperating issue of the camera shakes.

Videos turn out wobbly due to a laundry list of common issues. Regardless of the reason, it’s not pretty and existing techniques to fix video quality fail to provide any significant improvement without significant manual effort. #SharpShotSneak takes advantage of advancements in computer vision and deep learning to transform shaky videos into sharp, steady, action-packed footage.

Presenter: Shubhi Gupta

Collaborators: Aarsh Agarwal, Shobhit Sinha


Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could make 2D objects in Illustrator instantly appear 3D without struggling to manually fake it? Yeah, we think so too. Bringing in the new style of Vector Realism, #2DPlus is a set of features – dynamic shadows, attached shadows, auto-arrange, and graphic lighting, that come together to create 2.5D’ish looking outputs that graphic designers will undoubtedly love, saving a huge learning curve of understanding 3D apps.

Presenter: Rakesh Baidya

Collaborators: Arushi Jain, Nitin Sharma, Praveen Dhanuka, Priyanka C Herur, Samrat Nawle


With the increasing popularity of using augmented reality to create immersive, 3D experiences, the need for accessible 3D models has never been in such high demand. However, making a 3D model look realistic when you’re modeling it, from creating a great texture to getting the tiny details on the model to make it look true-to-life, is no walk in the park.

#Scantastic saves the day with an intuitive solution that leverages your smartphone and a photogrammetry pipeline to capture 3D models from the environment with minimal user intervention.

Presenter: Nikhil Gupta

Collaborators: Ali Aminian, Anubhav Jain, Bill Marino, Eric Webb, Hep Svadja, Polly Ing, Romain Rouffet, Nicolas Thienn


The path from an XD file to a production-ready application is like trying to make two objects running parallel to each other intersect. The story goes like this: designers define a specification through the design and developers try to come as close as possible to that specification. But in reality, not much is shared between the designers and developers that can be reused directly in the applications.

Connecting the disconnected worlds, #InSyncSneak allows designers to share information about the design and implementation, create a bridge prototype from XD, and quickly push to a production site.

Presenter: Alexandru-Daniel Mirea

Collaborators: Tudor Muscalu


Paint streak brushes are used across various types of artwork in order to move away from simplistic text and move towards a livelier text object. This requires hours of editing on photoshop and carefully casting every glyph stamp to be able to write your text. Nobody’s got time for that.

Combining users drawn stroke inputs, the choice of brush, and the typographic properties of the text object, #TypographicBrushes brings paint style brushes and new-type families to life in seconds.

Presenter: Nipun Jindal

Collaborators: Pramendra Rathi, Tanya Jindal, Deep Sinha

#MaterialWorld — powered by Adobe Sensei

Creating 3D assets from a single image can be a challenge in itself. You want to be able to bring that object to life, but what about the texture of that object? Now that task is a doozy. #MaterialWorld provides an intuitive material identification process, working under natural lighting, avoiding the need for complex capture setup or user inputs. The end result? A digital texture so real you can almost feel it.

Presenter: Rosalie Martin

Collaborators: Tamy Boubekeur, Arthur Roullier, Adrien Kaiser, Romain Rouffet

#OnTheBeatSneak — powered by Adobe Sensei

Imagine the following scenarios: you’re learning the latest TikTok dance, taping a music video or reliving the first dance at your wedding. You look great, the music is contagious, but the video and audio don’t quite match up. Maybe you have two left feet. Maybe you’re a little off tempo. Maybe it’s a little bit of both.

Here’s the problem: to make a quality dance video, your body movements must sync up with the beat of the music. #OnTheBeatSneak identifies out-of-rhythm movements and aligns them to generate beat-synced videos.

Presenter: Yang Zhou

Collaborators: Jimei Yang, Deepali Aneja, Jun Saito, Dingzeyu Li


Object manipulation in 3D digital tools is a daunting task. It requires incredible skill, attention to detail, and considerable time to create natural and non-intersecting layouts that behave like their real-world counterparts. But in the real world, objects can be simply and immediately “created” by just dropping items on top of each other and nudging them around, gravity and physics does the rest

Connecting the simplicity of the real world and the technology of the digital world, #PhysicsWhiz introduces a physics-based layout tool that combines a user’s intuitive sense of physical manipulation with the precision of digital tools.

Presenter: Jui-Hsien Wang

Collaborators: Jérémie Dumas, Danny Kaufman


The standard augmented reality experience of today tends to look more like a solo mission than an all-hands-on-deck operation. This is a problem because when it comes to AR experiences, teamwork makes the dream (or technology) work. #ARTogether brings to life a multi-user experience where everyone shares the same view of the physical space and virtual objects and can author and share AR scenes without compromising the quality of the experience.

Presenter: Haoliang Wang

Collaborators: Stefano Petrangeli, Vishy Swaminathan, Na Wang

#ComicBlast — powered by Adobe Sensei

Comic book design is one of the most exciting streams in the graphic design industry. It has evolved over a period of 200 years, from print to digital to animated/motion… and most recently, augmented and virtual reality comics. While the final visualization has become more technically advanced, the process of designing a comic book is still as primitive and time-consuming as it was 200 years ago.

#ComicBlast disrupts the way comics are created and consumed through efficient, collaborative, and intelligent design and technology paradigms that make comic book creation fun and 100x faster.

Presenter: Garima Arora

Collaborators: Amish Bedi, Lakshya Shrivastava, Priyanka C Herur, Samrat Nawle, Shivani Virdi, Vinay Pahlajani