Monthly Archives: April 2007

CS3 cleanup script for Windows available

Adobe has posted a Windows cleanup script (alongside the equivalent Mac version) that removes vestiges of the Photoshop CS3 beta as well as other Adobe pre-release software.  If you’re having trouble installing Photoshop CS3 or other new Adobe apps, this script may help.  You may also want to consult the tech notes on removing the PS beta on Windows XP, Vista, and Mac OS X.

The download page warns of nuclear holocaust, rivers of blood, etc. resulting from the use of the script.  I think the team is just being extremely conservative and cautious, but I believe there is a chance that the script will remove serial number info for Acrobat 8 (meaning you’ll need to re-enter your serial/reactivate).

One specific point: A number of people have asked whether it’s strictly necessary to deactivate the beta prior to uninstalling it and installing the shipping version.  Deactivation is accomplished via the Help menu, so it’s obviously a problem if you’ve already uninstalled the app.  The good news is that although deactivating is a good idea, it doesn’t seem to be necessary prior to installing the shipping version.

All this stuff can be pretty tweaky and system-specific, so please let us know if you run into problems.  Chances are I don’t know the answers myself, but I can route info back to the right people as necessary.

Illustration bits: Dust My Ride, Creep My Clown, & more

  • It’s tax time in the US, and illustrator Christoph Niemann created an elegant commentary for the cover of the New Yorker.  Elsewhere, his "Empires of Evil" flags (lighter-hearted than the name would suggest) are inspired, and he certainly has a new take on, er, dental hygiene. [Via]
  • Dust artist (yes, dust) Scott Wade has produced some amazing images for Mitsubishi’s new ad campaign. (For more dustiness, see previous.)
  • I can dig illustrator Tara McPherson’s muted palettes. [Via Geoff Scott]
  • On the other end of the chromatic spectrum, Nathan Fox punches up retro-fueled imagery.
  • Our pals at the Chopping Block have launched Chop Shop, a spot to sell all manner of groovy swag (gotta love the 10-Year Plan).  I delight in the great spit and polish (try rolling over the little characters in the header, for instance)–excellent A2Detail.
  • Everyone’s favorite alcoholic raven/alt newspaper survivor, Drinky Crow, is getting his own show. [Via]
  • And lastly, Digital Newsflash offers an interesting moniker for a certain CS3 branding image: "Creep-o the Clown." Heh–yeah, that does induce a little coulrophobia, no?

New guide: Getting Started in Lightroom

Last year Adobe released a series of digital photography guides to great acclaim from the photographic community.  Lots of folks chimed in with requests for more of the same, so I’m glad to report that a new 41-page title, Getting Started in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, is available as a free PDF download.  The high-res version is illustrated with 65MB (!) of beautiful images, while the lower-res version is around 1/10th the size. [Via]

Clean-up script for CS3 Mac betas available

Adobe has posted a clean-up script for Mac that will remove vestiges of the Photoshop CS3 public beta as well as other pre-release apps.  It’s important to run this script (and not just throw the app folder into the trash!), and/or to use the application uninstaller, before installing the shipping version of CS3 apps.  An equivalent script will be posted for Windows later in the week. (I’m told that tech support is seeing fewer installation problem reports on Windows because people are used to uninstallers on that platform).

I’m attending NAB in Las Vegas at the moment, so staying on top of developments is tricky, but I’ll post more info as I get it.  Thanks for your patience as I work through approving a backlog of comments.

CS3 shipping; AE/Premiere ready for download

I’m delighted to say that the biggest and best release in Adobe’s history is now shipping!  Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Extended, Illustrator, InDesign, Flash, Fireworks, Dreamweaver, Bridge, Contribute, Device Central, and Version Cue are now available via the store and can be downloaded in tryout form shortly.  The CS3 editions of After Effects, Premiere Pro, and Soundbooth will be shipping this summer, and they’re available as pre-release downloads from Adobe Labs.

One important note:  If you’ve installed a beta build of Photoshop, Flash, Soundbooth, or other CS3 software, you must first uninstall the app(s) before installing the shipping versions:

  • On the Mac, the uninstaller is in Applications/Utilities/Adobe Installers.  Note: You cannot uninstall by dragging CS3 applications to the trash; instead, you must use the uninstaller.
  • On Windows XP, uninstall via Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel.
  • On Windows Vista, in the Programs section of the Control Panel, select Uninstall a Program.

If you experience problems with the uninstall or the install, you may need to use the Adobe CS3 Clean Script which will be available within a few days. [Update: The Mac version is available now; Windows is due shortly. –J.]

Some perspective on how Adobe apps are built

Mordy Golding, who spent a couple of cycles working as an Illustrator PM, has posted some perspective on how Adobe applications are created.  It’s a bit of a long read, but Mordy touches on some common questions, including:

  • How does the team decide which features to build & for what markets?  For example, how is something like Flash integration weighed against something like N-color printing support?
  • Why doesn’t the team have more resources to put towards various priorities?
  • Why doesn’t Adobe typically add functionality in small dot releases?
  • If a feature exists in one application (e.g. the OpenType palette in Illustrator, or separations in InDesign), why is it hard to move to other ones?

I’m never quite sure how much of this people outside the company will find interesting, vs. thinking "Just get it done, guys."  (I bounce between those poles myself.)

As for resources, I think a couple of points are worth making:

  • Very often, products don’t get staffed in accordance with the money they bring in.  Photoshop, for example, doesn’t get anything like the number of engineers you’d expect based on revenue.  Why?  Because the revenue is needed to fund new areas of development that may not turn a profit for a while.  Years ago, I’m told, the PostScript group (then the big bread winner) resented having to fund the dinky little applications group.  Clearly, though, that was the right move for the future.  At present it can be frustrating to know that you could do Kickass/Long-Requested Feature X if you had just one or two extra bodies (very frustrating) , but that’s the nature of the biz.
  • Although we all clamor for more engineers & QE folks, without whom we can’t build anything, it’s probably good that we’re constrained.  Otherwise, we’d go nuts building features, resulting in tons of complexity. That is, we’d be knocking ourselves out to serve customers, but rapid unchecked growth would probably overwhelm just about everyone.

Wireframes, giant Donkey Kong, and more

//na// Whether or not the medium is the message, it certainly influences it.  People love turning computer bits into big physical forms:

  • Design Observer catalogs examples of computer GUI made real (masking tape folders, huge scrollbars, etc.).
  • The various "Web 2.0" trends are imagined as a supermarket in this clever video. I want to go around saying "Quakr, Quakrrrrr" but I think I’d get kicked out of the house. [Via]
  • Thomas Raschke makes groovy wireframe sculptures.
  • Speaking of wireframes, British artist Benedict Radcliffe has created an amazing 1:1 scale Subaru Impreza wireframe sculpture.  Not only is it not a Photoshop job; it apparently it even got a few parking tickets!  Via John Peterson, who writes "It’s s ort of an extreme example of the cursor-kite or the giant red Google pushpin."
  • And speaking of vehicles, check out this life-size model car.  Having carved myself up plenty while modeling, I fear equivalently large X-Acto knives. [Via]
  • And finally, for those of you that love primates and/or small Italian laborers, there’s a 4-storey Donkey Kong made from Post-It Notes. [Via Veronique Brossier]

Do Bloods & Crips get Pantone chips?

Who knew that Pantone is into snuff films?  The company has gotten inkthirsty, urging customers to bust caps into outdated formula guides, then rewarding them for their trouble. Whoever creates the best video of colors getting clipped (ba-dum, tssch) will win an iPhone & other loot.  More info is in Pantone’s press release.  Please tell me that someone will get Sean Penn involved…

In more tranquil color-related news:

  • Designer Veerle Pieters gives some good advice on picking palettes.
  • Tangerine is a little Mac app that provides "a universal color palette system," making it possible to manage and apply color schemes across apps. [Via Bryan O’Neil Hughes]
  • Colorstrology aims to pair you with "your personal birth color."  I, apparently, get "Azalea." Meh.  Can’t I get something cool, like Gunmetal, or White Chocolate?
  • Color in Motion imagines colors as characters, acting out the qualities of each & giving a little background info.
  • KolorWheel turns iPods into color scheme picker.  The idea, apparently, is that you can hold the ‘pod next to an object while picking colors.  [Via]

Now, how can I get Ice-T out of my head?

Photoshop CS3: Canine Edition

Hey, you know who’d probably like multi-touch input?  Dogs, apparently.

That video reminded me of a little anecdote: Not long after I joined the Photoshop team, I was treated to the very unique experience of having Jeff Chien and Todor Georgiev (who really should start Todor & Jeff’s Image Science Hut) simultaneously trying to explain high-powered image science concepts in their respective accents (Taiwanese & Russian Bulgarian*, respectively). When I’d fail to grasp what one was saying, the other would get frustrated and break in–not exactly making things better (though not for lack of trying).  I was a little bewildered, bemused, and unable to believe that these guys would spend their time trying to educate me, of all people.

Anyway, Todor started to explain color matching by holding a CD on three fingers, saying, "It is like a table, you see?  You remove a leg, it becomes unstable…" He illustrated his points by explaining the human perceptual system, noting that whereas a person would respond to certain colors, "If I show this to a dog, the dog will not like it. I show it to a fish, the fish will not like." At that point I interrupted to say, "But Todor, we’ve already sold it to all the humans; dogs are our next target market!" "Okay okay," he replied, "You want dog version, I’ll give you dog version…"

So, do be careful what you wish for. 😉

PS–These Reactrix guys (of the dog/ball demo) have an interesting reel on their site, showing more applications of their technology.
* D’oh; Sorry, Todor, and thanks to Marc Pawliger for the correction.

New podcasts: JNack Explains it All

On the insane off chance that you aren’t hearing enough from me already, you can tune into some new podcasts:

  • Inside Digital Photo is a new program from Popular Photography & Inside Mac creator Scott Sheppard. In the latest episode (recorded at Photoshop World last week) I spoke with Scott about all things Photoshop, Bridge, Camera Raw, and Lightroom.  Scott also recently spoke with Lightroom peeps Tom Hogarty & George Jardine.
  • Tips From the Top Floor is a digital photography podcast hosted by Christoph Marquardt. We chatted today about Photoshop, hitting features big and small & talking a bit about the future. (Look for the various subscription links below the intro text, or click little Play button to listen right on the page.)
  • I also spoke with Justin Seeley of, demoing some of the new CS3 features for a video podcast.  I don’t yet see it on the site, but I’d expect it to appear there soon.