The Blob


01 June 2008


Adobe CS4... The next big step

Today, I've watched the video of Adobe Financial meeting, seems ultra-boring, but they make a sneak preview (at 0:18 of the video) of their next major update: Adobe creative suite 4.

In general: interface reworked. Now even on mac you have unified panels and a grey background instead of viewing your desktop. You also get "tabs" to browse between opened documents. After testing Fireworks beta CS4, I don't feel lost with the new kind of interface. That seems really good improvements to me.

Photoshop CS4
John Nack says it, the major feature is performances. That promises a lot! In the video, he plays with an enormous picture as it was a jpg of 100Kb.


A new software in the suite. Its goal is to fill the gap between designer and developers. To resume it's like add interactivity in your psd files. I'm not really sure of the utility of this tool. Seems too basic for me, it only integrate standard interactivities, like srollbar, basics rollover, etc... But designers don't want to use BASIC stuff. They always want impossible stuff, they can't do alone. In fact Thermo is like flash for designers only. But wait and see...

After effects CS4.

They don't show lot of new stuff, but I can already see they added a search field in the timeline panel. Great! They integrated tools to preview your video on mobile phones. They also showed a new cartoon effect... I don't know why because it totally useless... Who cares of this kind of filters? The good point is they make the demo on macos X. So we can hope they worked on performances on our macs.

Flash CS4.
Ok you all already know a lot about flash CS4, thanks to the release in beta of Astro (flash player 10). So ok now we have Z axis, pixel bending capabilities, bones, etc.

In the demo, we can see how easy it is to play with rotation Z. To create tween, and to modify tween. Every tween is like a vector line you can transform, rotate etc. I love that! They showed how easy it is to integrate a video into a text rotation in 3D.

There is also an incredible new tool to extract moving stuff from video. You just draw some guides and the filter do the rest. The quality of course is not like a real blue key but it can really help sometimes.
Flash and after effects tends to share a lot of their functions. It remembers me when photoshop started to integrate illustrator functions and vice versa. I dream of the day we could copy paste elements between flash and AE like smart object with PS and illustrator.

Adobe media player.
I think they hope a lot about this AIR application. But personally I don't see why and how. It's juste like thousand of media view applications but running painfully slow and memory consumptive thanks to the flash technology behind (comparing to native mac or windows applications I mean). But I'm not a big fan of AIR right now. I just need to be convinced with good examples...

It's not in the video but you can try Fireworks CS4 and Dreamweaver CS4 from adobe labs. I just give a shot at fireworks. Seems good and more reactive. Clean interface. But as I'm not a regular user of this software, I'm not the best beta-tester.
Soundbooth CS4 is also available to download and test. This is a sound editor application made for video editors and designers. For now I prefer to stick with Apple Soundtrack, it's already full of functions I don't know how to use so I don't want to spare time in learning another sound software

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