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Adobe Systems buys Nonlinear Technology Inc.


Adobe Systems Inc., a major player in the computer software market, has purchased for an undisclosed amount Nonlinear Technology Inc., a Greenbelt-based company specializing in technologies that allow computers to "read" printed words.

NTI's 10 employees will move to Mountain View, Calif., where Adobe is based, said H. H. Chen, vice president of Nonlinear Technology. Mr. Chen said the relocation will begin "within a few months."

Mr. Chen said NTI, which he helped create two years ago, will be folded into Adobe. Under the Adobe name, Mr. Chen said, he expects NTI's work to continue in the same direction it would have without the sale.

NTI is among a handful of companies that specialize in optical character recognition systems, which permit computers to "read" printed text.

NTI's products, which are considered among the industry's most advanced, let computers recognize characters produced by machine, fax and hand.

As part of the deal, Adobe also bought OCR Systems, a Pennsylvania-based company that also specializes in optical character recognition systems. OCR uses technologies developed by NTI.

The terms of the sales, including the prices of the two privately held companies, were not disclosed.

OCR's 20 employees also will move to Mountain View, Mr. Chen said. OCR, founded in 1969, develops and markets optical character recognition systems.

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