Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, or you are not a Web designer or working in a related field, you cannot have missed the announcement of Adobe’s new Creative Suite 5 a few weeks ago. I have been using two products in the suite for a while now, including of course, Fireworks CS5. As is becoming a tradition here on pixelyzed.com, here are my thoughts on the new version as well as a few thoughts on the future… Continue Reading →
I just read a very interesting review of Dreamweaver CS5 written by David Powers. David is someone I have known for many years and he has written many books related to PHP. He is someone who’s opinion I trust.
So his review of Dreamweaver CS5 was of particular interest to me as I am now fully embracing the WordPress platform and learning more about it every day. PHP is also becoming my second development platform (alongside ColdFusion) and any improvements to Dreamweaver for PHP development is great news to me… and apparently there’s plenty.
Unlike Fireworks CS5 which I have used and will review within the next few days, I haven’t used Dreamweaver CS5 yet so this review makes me anxious to get my hands on a copy and start integrating it in my work flow.
He also touches on other issues like HTML 5 and CSS3 support (or lack thereof) and why he thinks that, for now, Adobe made the right decision. Thanks for the great review David!
I’ve been reading a few more comments about Google Chrome last night and this morning and have kept using it for browsing since yesterday. Here’s a few more points :
- My comments from yesterday and today take into account that Chrome is a first beta. People have to remember that this is not yet a replacement for anyone’s regular browser. Many comments say that it doesn’t support extensions like Firefox, IE or Opera (they may call it diffferent things but you get my gist). It also has some annoying rendering bugs that seem to be due to Webkit and misses basic functionality like a way to turn off scripts which is a very good point that a commenter to my previous post brought up. All valid points but remember that this is a FIRST beta. Chrome will evolve.
- I saw a comment today on Jeffrey Zeldman’s site that summed up my first impression of it : “At present this seems like a solution waiting for a problem”. The more I think about it, the more I think that’s true. Did we “really” need a new browser in the market?
- The above ties in with some of Zeldman’s comments as well as Tantek Celik who commented on the same post. Both say the same thing which is that, in order to compete, a new browser must offer something that others do not. They then discuss ways a browser may differentiate itself and Tantek brings up the point that, with a similar feature set, a browser may win market share by bringing better performance. So far, this seems to be the main thing Chrome brings to the table. But is it enough?
- While Chrome is certainly much faster than Firefox, even Firefox 3 which improved its prdecessor’s very sluggish performance, is it really much faster than Opera 9.5? Not in my experience. On some pages, Opera is actually still faster than Chrome. So again, is it enough?
Like I said yesterday, only time will tell what impact Chrome will have when it reaches gold status and reaches a wider audience outside Web professionals and hard core tech geeks. Will people be willing to swicth? Personally, I have my doubts, especially if Chrome’s differentiation factors are not more visible than just speed. That may be enough for some people but most IT departments will probably keep using IE and those who moved to Firefox, Opera or Safari may choose to stay with the devil they know…
I just downloaded and installed Google Chrome after reading the comic book that explains the details of the project. I had been hearing rumors about it last week but I didn’t pay much attention to them. In the last couple days there had seemed to be much anticipation (and over-hype) about its release and what it means. I must say I was prepared to be underwhelmed… and, as a Web designer, thinking, who needs yet another new browser to test sites into? But after using it for a little bit, I must admit I like what I see.
My initial hesitation came mostly from the fact that, aside from its search engine technology, I haven’t been impressed by much of what Google has released in the past. I don’t use GMail and I don’t use Google Documents for the same basic reason. So far, I still much prefer desktop applications for email and office type tasks and my communications and organizational activities are pretty much centered in Outlook 2007. It works very well for me and my data is on my own machine where I want it. I never liked Web based email to begin with.
So, in summary, Google Chrome seems like a solid entry in the crowded browser world and will only get better. But, I would take the premature previsions of some pundits that Chrome will cause the demise of MSIE with a huge grain of salt… Haven’t we heard that one before?
Won’t tech commentators ever learn that “regular” people are creatures of habit and are unlikely to change browsers just because a new player’s in town? Don’t they get that Microsoft is entrenched in the business world for the foreseeable future? Those who should be worried by this are the other smaller players IMO, like Opera and Firefox and maybe even Safari which seems to be as entrenched on the Mac as MSIE is on PCs… for now.
Anyway, only time will tell how Chrome will affect the browser wars but it is a good piece of software that brings welcome competition and innovation. And did I say it was fast! I’m writing this blog post in it through TinyMCE now which unfortunately doesn’t work in Opera yet. Good going with this one Google!
Now that I have installed the new CS3 Design Premium release version and have actually spent some time working with the new applications, I’m starting to understand the fuss a lot of people made and are still making over the new Adobe user interface. Although I was a beta tester, I’ve mainly been using Fireworks and Dreamweaver CS3 because those are the apps I needed to use to work on my current projects. As you probably know by now, neither Fireworks nor Dreamweaver have been updated to the new Adobe UI.
I’ve been working on a new logo for my business site which will be used to perform a sort of rebranding of my business (both online and print collateral. I’d started the work in Illustrator CS2 and moved to CS3 last week to continue. In the included image, you can see the Illustrator interface with the latest revision of the logo in a landscape letter sized page at 100%.
In that image you’ll probably first notice that the main toolbox is now 1 tall column which saves precious horizontal screen real estate. I have it floating over the artboard as this is my preference but it comes docked to the left by default. On the right you’ll see a number of panels reduced to icons and labels which saves a lot of space and lets you concentrate on the work you’re doing. To the right of that you see the Layers and other panels in their “normal” openend stated like you are used to and, on my machine they are actually on my second monitor even if you see them in the same image as the main interface here.
To be honest, at first I was really sceptical about this new UI and, like many others, I was worried that it would “break” the Macromedia UI which I generally found more efficient and elegant than the old Adobe UI. But as I use it more and more, what I’ve come to realize is that this new UI actually keeps what was best in both the old Macromedia and Adobe approaches. It is more flexible than the old MM style and solves the proliferation of countless screen space guzzling palettes in the old Adobe UIs. It looks very polished too but, more importantly, it works very well even if it does require some getting used to for an old Macromedia user like me. Even those who have been using previous versions of Adobe applications (also like me) will probably need a little time to find their bearings within the new UI.
To me, this new UI is a marvel of sophistication, elegance and efficiency and I am now somewhat disapointed that Fireworks and Dreamweaver will have to wait until CS4 o get the same interface. Lastly, I have to give the InDesign development team huge kudos for going the extra mile and adding even more sophistication to the concept by letting users add and delete items in the main menus as well as color code items that are used often so they are easier to spot. As I spend more and more time in ID to design the layout of my interactive PDF tutorials, I can appreciate all the extra effort they put in making ID one of the most sophisticated pieces of software I ever tried.