Whatever Schewe et al say, if it looks like a duck, etc, it's a duck. The timeline shows clearly enough that Adobe were clearly shocked by Aperture, as well as Steve Jobs' apparent desire to destroy Adobe, and rushed out the Shadowland RAW editor prototype with a bunch of badly integrated, poorly designed, barely sufficient DAM stuff loosely bolted on to it.
Yeah, ya know, your timeline is incorrect...Adobe didn't rush out LR in response to Aperture...Adobe wasn't "clearly shocked" by Aperture.
Randy Ubillos, who was instrumental in developing Final Cut Pro at Apple was the primary developer of Aperture. Mark Hamburg who was the #2 engineer on Photoshop was the primary developer on Lightroom.
Randy used to work at Adobe on Adobe Premiere–point of fact, Randy left Adobe to go to Macromedia because Adobe didn't want to go the direction Randy wanted Premiere to go. Apple bought what Randy worked on at Macromedia to keep from falling on other's hands and had Randy develop Final Cut Pro. FCP was a big success for Apple. Randy was kinda "moved off" FCP and started working on what would end up being called Aperture. I'm pretty sure that was at the end of 2002. I was contacted by someday at Apple to comment on a marketing development plan for what would become Aperture early in 2003. Since I was under NDA with Adobe on a competing product I declined to work with Apple.In early December 2002 Mark Hamburg, UI designer Sandy Alves, project lead Andrei Herasimchuk and Thomas Knoll visited my studio for a couple of days of brainstorming product ideas directed towards photographers. During that meeting I expressed the importance of developing an application to deal with lots of images easily and efficiently instead of an application used for spending a great deal of time on a single image-in the 1990′s it was all about how long an imaging artist spent working on an image, the new millenium dictated an application designed to spend as little time as possible working on many images.
And…the time spent should be more enjoyable for photographers than working in a complicated application like Photoshop.
For various reasons, Mark was no longer working on Photoshop and his desire to develop his own application for digital imaging went down the path that lead to Shadowland, uh, I mean Lightroom.
The above was from a history of lightroom I wrote for PhotoshopNews.com (which is defunct but still accessible HERE
So at the end of 2002 both Mark and Randy were working on their respective products at the same time. It should also be noted that Mark and Randy were actually good friends from the time Randy worked at Adobe. But I have no specific knowledge that they talked to each other about what they were working on–likely they didn't because, well secrets are secret.
When Apple announced Aperture in the fall of 2005 at Photo Expo in NYC, I was there for the launch. I can tell you that Adobe was not in the least bit surprised because Aperture was at that point not in the least bit "secret". Everybody who knew Adobe & Apple knew what was going on...
There are some other stories I can tell you like a certain Photoshop "expert" going to Adobe early in 2005 and telling Adobe to kill Lightroom because he feared it would negatively impact Photoshop and his, uh, livelihood. That Adobe was considering killing Lightroom and certain people were fighting to keep Lightroom alive. Ultimately, the fact that Apple did release Aperture did give motivation for Adobe to circle the wagons and go ahead with Lightroom. Aperture did prove to certain Adobe people that there was a viable market for a database driven photo app.
To think that Adobe rushed out Lightroom in response to Aperture is naive...there is no way a piece of software could be released as a beta Jan 2006 that was started after Aperture was released Nov 30th 2005?
Also, I will tell you that running a public beta of Shadowland/Lightroom was discussed at least in the early 2005 time period on the private beta forums. The plan was to use public reaction as a method of research for feature development particularly while a Windows version was being developed.
Actually, it was the fact that Adobe released both Mac and Windows versions of Lightroom is ultimately what caused Apple to end up killing Aperture because the fact is, Apple is, first and foremost, a hardware company. The ONLY reason Apple does software is to sell hardware. It's the reason Apple did Final Cut Pro (which is still being developed because it sells computers) and started Aperture. But Aperture stopped helping to sell computers and Apple turned away from pro photographers...
Say what you will about what Lightroom can and can't do well and what it should do. But one should be careful talking about history unless you were there, on the frontline while it was being made.