Ending Soon! Save 33% on All Access

Adobe Co-Founder Charles Geschke Dies at 81 He played a major role in developing PDFs and desktop publishing.

By J. Fingas

This story originally appeared on Engadget

It's a sad weekend for the tech industry. Adobe has confirmed that co-founder Dr. Charles "Chuck" Geschke (shown at left) died of unmentioned causes on April 16th at the age of 81. He and Dr. John Warnock launched Adobe in 1982 after leaving Xerox, and Geschke served as COO, president and board chairman between 1986 and 2017. He was also a board member until April 2020. However, it's the technology Geschke helped develop that you'll most likely remember — there's a good chance you're using it today.

Geschke and Adobe were first known for developing PostScript, a page description language whose power (along with Apple's Macintosh and Aldus' PageMaker) helped establish desktop publishing in the 1980s. He and Warnock are also known for developing the Portable Document Format, or PDF. The technology's ability to preserve layouts regardless of software or platform was groundbreaking when it was introduced in 1993, and it has become crucial for everything from publishing through to everyday tasks like signed forms.

Related: The Case for Every Entrepreneur Learning Adobe CC and Where to Learn It

Geschke also backed the creation of the Tech Museum of Innovation (now Tech Interactive) and, along with Warnock, received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation from President Obama in 2009. He also reached headlines in 1992 when he was kidnapped and held for ransom for four days before his rescue.

Geschke leaves behind his wife, three children and seven grandchildren. Adobe, meanwhile, still has a major influence on the tech world and developed some of its most important products while Geschke held leading roles, including Photoshop. In that light, his legacy could endure long after his passing.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Business Culture

The Psychological Impact of Recognition on Employee Motivation and Engagement — 3 Key Insights for Leaders

By embedding strategic recognition into their core practices, companies can significantly elevate employee motivation, enhance productivity and cultivate a workplace culture that champions engagement and loyalty.


What the Mentality of the Dotcom Era Can Teach the AI Generations

The internet boom showed that you still need tenacity and resilience to succeed at a time of great opportunity.

Business News

Now that OpenAI's Superalignment Team Has Been Disbanded, Who's Preventing AI from Going Rogue?

We spoke to an AI expert who says safety and innovation are not separate things that must be balanced; they go hand in hand.

Employee Experience & Recruiting

Beyond the Great Resignation — How to Attract Freelancers and Independent Talent Back to Traditional Work

Discussing the recent workplace exit of employees in search of more meaningful work and ways companies can attract that talent back.


What Franchising Can Teach The NFL About The Impact of Private Equity

The NFL is smart to take a thoughtful approach before approving institutional capital's investment in teams.