In his blog, Photoshop senior product manager discusses major (and arguably overdue) changes coming to Adobe's flagship product:
Photoshop has been accreting power & users for the better part of two decades. The once-little app has proven almost endlessly adaptable to new needs and workflows, but all that morphing has a price. In many cases we've traded simplicity for power, and not all the pieces look like part of a cohesive whole. In fact, I sometimes joke that looking at some parts of the app is like counting the rings in a tree: you can gauge when certain features arrived by the dimensions & style of the dialog.
This isn't exactly a news flash--far from it. So, the question is, What exactly are we gonna do about it? No one wants to work with--or work on--some shambling, bloated monster of a program.
The good news is that we've been plotting the solutions for a number of years, chipping away at the problem. Good stuff comes to the surface in bits and pieces, but we haven't quite turned the corner--yet. A few thoughts:
We must make Photoshop "everything you need, nothing you don't." Presenting the same user experience to a photographer as we do to a radiologist, as to a Web designer, as to a prepress guy, is kind of absurd.
With this goal in mind, we must make Photoshop dramatically more configurable. We've been chipping away for several cycles, enabling first workspaces, then customizable menus & shortcuts. We need to be much bolder, though, and I've been dropping totally unsubtle hints about this for ages.
We can present solutions via task-oriented workspaces.
By leading people to best practices, we can start deprecating (and later removing) outmoded functionality.
So, why am I telling you all this, and why do I think it's worth reading? I'm saying it because although we can't (and probably shouldn't) turn the whole battleship (or Caddy, if you like) on a dime, we get the need, and we're on the case. We've been toiling away beneath the surface, setting the groundwork for change. There are no magic bullets, but I feel that for the first time in my 5+ years working on this team, we're within striking distance of some big things--and everyone reading this will play a role in making things better. Just thought you should know. :-)