In a bag of new press releases, publishing software giant Adobe Systems Inc. has announced a new dynamic imaging server application -- Adobe AlterCast. Built on Photoshop and Illustrator code, AlterCast has been primed to work within new and existing CMS solutions.

However, priced from US$7 500 to US$60 000 it appears to be out of reach of many lone freelancers or small web design businesses. It also might have come 12-24 months too late, missing the rise of many Internet companies, and perhaps underestimating the early adoption of server-side technologies such as ColdFusion, ASP, and PHP.

AlterCast can generate and repurpose web images on the fly, outputting standard image file formats, and supporting the transparency, animation, and layer effects common within Photoshop. Budget tools, like ImageMagick, that can handle some of these capabilities already exist and may provide a competing alternative for smaller web projects.

More information is available in Adobe's press release.