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Metatools Returns from the Dead with iPhone App

Posted by: Stephen Wildstrom on July 28, 2009

MetaTools, a hot software company back in the early days of desktop computer graphics, has reappeared with Goo, an iPhone version of a once-popular desktop app that allows fun manipulation and distortion of photos.

MetaTools was best known for Kai’s Power Tools (KPT), a set of groundbreaking add-ons to Adobe Photoshop created by a brilliant and idiosyncratic developer named Kai Krause. Photoshop pros considered KPT indispensable, but its main features were eventually incorporated into Photoshop itself. Krause also developed Bryce, an early tool for the creation of synthetic landscapes.

Kai eventually retired to a castle in his native Germany and the company, renamed MetaCreations, drifted, like many other independent packaged software makers in the late 1990s, and was sold off in pieces. Former CEO John Wilczak bought back the rights to the MetaTools name and some of the old titles, and now it is back with Goo.

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Reader Comments

Deesktop App

July 29, 2009 11:50 AM

What is a "deesktop app"?


July 29, 2009 12:40 PM

Ha, wow, blast from the past. I remember playing with KPT, Bryce, and FractalDesign Poser, before Poser FractalDesign got bought by MetaTools...

1990 here we come....


July 29, 2009 10:09 PM

Yeah, that group put out some great stuff back in the day. The new MetaTools has already put out MetaSquares and now Goo, called Making Faces now, for the iphone. Both are in the app store.

Clayton Light

July 31, 2009 03:53 PM

Those were fun days. Kai was a cool guy.
I was a member of his forum on AOL when there were only six members.

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BusinessWeek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, Douglas MacMillan, and Spencer Ante dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. One of the first mainstream media tech blogs, Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.



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