Why are raw processors trying to be like the DAM/Library/Image managers?
The original question came in a discussion about CaptureOne and MediaPro, and the answer is essentially because Aperture and then Lightroom showed that integrated processing and management was what a lot of photographers want and need.
These apps didn’t emerge because Photoshop was too complex for photographers – Elements already existed – or because ACR/Bridge wasn’t working. The real problem we faced was volume, which really impacted once digital capture became the norm, and so these apps are about combining processing in bulk and managing your collections. Wanting to get into this market lay behind Microsoft’s purchase of iView MediaPro in 2006, when they outbid PhaseOne, and although they’ve lost a few years there is still plenty of potential in combining iView and C1. For my liking PhaseOne are a bit too wedded to keeping them separate, but it’s a line that appeals to some folk, and the key is going to be making the two apps communicate very smoothly. ACR+DNG+iView worked brilliantly for me, but required a bit of thought and one or two simple maintenance tasks. PhaseOne have bought what is fundamentally a very good product, with the advantage of supporting whatever file types the photographer chooses rather than setting an arbitrary line like “no video because no camera shoots it”, hm, or “no CMYK because you can’t do anything with it” – er, manage it with the rest of your work? But they’ve a lot to do, and they’re treading a fine line between wanting the C1-MediaPro to be seamless with mentioning the “integration” word.
For what it’s worth, I’ve always wanted LR to let me decide what files I want in Library, and have a mode to display embedded previews. you never know, one day….