Work It Like You Stole It

DPCover 11-23A


Some stuff is not really free – like when you buy a used car and they say it’s new to you, or when you swipe the newspaper from some guy’s porch, that paper is free to you. You know, if you discount the black mark on your otherwise spotless soul, and can overlook seeing the guy sobbing over his lost paper – “wh…where is it? I needed those coupons!”, then it’s free.

The same could be said of online piracy. That app that lets you that lets you rip an MP3 from a YouTube video can’t be very legal, although the market for the harmonica version of the Star Wars theme has to be painfully small.

When you donate your junk to the thrift store, though, you offer that stuff up for free. You’re never going to wear those bell-bottom jeans again, are you? That BeeGees Greatest Hits 8-track? So, while those are junk to you, there’s somebody out there shopping in the thrift store that just needs a pair of jeans, and will overlook the funky legs. You gave them away for free, but they had value to somebody.

That’s like this software. It’s so old that it positively creaks when you run it. But it runs. And it’s powerful. And it’s free. That last part’s the most exciting.

If you know Adobe InDesign, you know it’s a fantastic layout program, for anything from greeting cards to websites. This is version CS2, which was popular with the Flintstones, but it has all the functionality that was available away back then.

Adobe Illustrator is great, no matter what version you run. That has to be said first, because this is version CS2. No, it doesn’t feature paste-in-place, which, if you are the graphic artist type, is God’s gift to software. But it does have Duplicate, which is almost the same thing.

And Adobe PhotoShop. For Free? Hello? McFly? PhotoShop is so ubiquitous (which, it turns out, is not another word for a biscuit mix) as to be a verb on its own, as in that picture was clearly photoshopped.

In fact, the marvelously free Illustrator software was used to create the illustration for this post – yes, that’s right. The children in the lower left were hand drawn, but were image-traced into the drawing.

Oh, the things you can do!

So, free? Yes, f-r-e-e that spells free. There’s an adage that says if the product is free, you are the product, but in this case it doesn’t apply. In this case, someone found a link to software that is no value to its maker, like that groovy BeeGees tape, but still has value in the world.

Here’s the caveat – if there wasn’t a caveat, you’d need to suspicious – the software will ask you to register it. Don’t do that. It’s old, old software, and there is no registration available for it: the commands are embedded in the code, that’s all. Don’t register it, but use the heck out of it. Get this: it’s FREE!

Here’s the link: . This will get you started with PhotoShop. Search for “Illustrator CS2” and “InDesign CS2”, and you’ll find them.

Happy softwaring!


Author: John D Reinhart

Author, technical writer, videographer, actor, and naval historian John D Reinhart is a very busy guy. You can find his novels as

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