The diverse software in Adobe CS5 Design Premium enables you to create everything from an interactive e-commerce website to a printed book. Each piece of software in the Adobe Creative Suite works on its own as a robust tool. Many features are consistent among the applications in the suite, such as color, file formats, and text editing as well as general preferences for rulers and guides throughout all applications in CS5.
With InDesign, you can create beautifully laid-out page designs. You can also execute complete control over your images and export them to interactive documents, such as Acrobat PDF. Aimed at everyone from graphics professionals to web users, Illustrator allows you to design layouts, logos for print, or vector-based images that can be imported into other programs, such as Photoshop, InDesign, or even Flash.
Adobe also enables you to easily and quickly create files by saving Illustrator documents as templates and using a predefined library and document size. Photoshop CS5 Photoshop is the industry standard software for web designers, video professionals, and photographers who need to manipulate bitmap images.
Using Photoshop, you can manage and edit images by correcting color, editing photos by hand, and even combining several photos to create unique effects. You can use Photoshop as a painting program. Photoshop even includes a file browser that lets you easily manage your images by assigning keywords or allowing you to search the images based on metadata. Acrobat 9. This format allows users who create files on either Macintosh or PC systems to share files with each other, and with users of handheld devices or Unix computers.
You can work with a visual authoring workspace commonly known as Design view , or you can work with the code. Dreamweaver enables you to set up entire websites of multiple pages on your hard drive, test them, and then upload them to a web server. With Dreamweaver, you can create pages that contain imagery from Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and Flash.
Flash Professional CS5 and Flash Catalyst CS5 Flash combines stunning motion graphics, visual effects, and interactivity that have made it the industry standard for creating websites, CD-ROM presentations, and interactive learning tools. Create graphics and type in Flash with its comprehensive set of drawing tools and then put them in motion with timeline-based animation, movie clips, and interactive buttons.
Fireworks offers features that were available in ImageReady in the CS2 suite. You may wonder why Fireworks is included in the Design Premium suite when it already includes two other image editing programs, Photoshop and Illustrator. Among other things, Fireworks is useful for mocking up web page designs, making it quick and easy to design a web page layout and web applications.
Fireworks also enables you to edit both bitmap and vector images. Adobe Bridge Adobe Bridge is truly an incredible application, especially with the CS5 release, because the processing speed is greatly improved and new features are available, including the ability to take advantage of the new Mini Bridge in several of the CS5 applications such as Photoshop and InDesign.
Bridge CS5 is a separate application you can access from the Creative Suite applications. It allows you to quickly access and manage multiple documents such as images, text files, and Adobe stock photos , which you can use in all the CS5 applications. Share Your Dummies Story.
Would any of this sink in? The Adobe demonstrators themselves seemed a tad breathless as they rattled off top features of the software that comprises CS5.
Any way you slice it, simultaneously unveiling some 14 applications with a combined new features is a tall order. Implementing that many features is an impressive feat, to be sure. Coordinating that many development teams who were charged with not only creating compelling features for their individual products, but also with reaching across numerous aisles to collaborate on cross-application features, had to take incredible effort and discipline.
Kudos to Adobe on its accomplishment. But from the receiving end, it almost seems like too much at once. It is really cool. This powerful feature lets you cover over foreground objects or fill in gaps in a background with pixel data gathered from the surrounding area. Packaging apps together The character of the launch event exemplifies a broader question: Does CS5 give Adobe customers what they want?
But now, has more become too much—overwhelming—all at one time? When Adobe launched the Creative Suite concept in , a couple of things became clear. First, packaging multiple applications together resulted in economies of scale for both customers and Adobe.
Customers paid substantially less for the package of apps than they would have for separate single apps, and had the added advantage of having them all updated at the same time.
Suites made economic sense for Adobe, too, especially in areas of manufacturing, packaging, and marketing. As the constituent applications evolved to interact more closely with each other, the company was able to take further advantage of centralized development of core software components that span all applications.
Reduced overhead means greater profit. Another benefit to the Creative Suite strategy for all concerned has been customer exposure to different applications. But escorted by Photoshop, Illustrator, and Acrobat, InDesign was on its way to conquering its rival. A traditional Photoshop customer buying CS3 had access to Dreamweaver, for example, while a former Macromedia Flash customer had access to Premiere Pro.
It was a win-win situation. Even so, for many customers, getting Dreamweaver in a suite with Photoshop is sort of like getting a bicycle tire pump with your new car wheels.
But if you have a bike at home, well then, bonus! You just got something that may come in handy, and at a favorable price. Economy and exposure Seven years after the initial Creative Suite was released, these two tenets—economy and exposure—hold true and continue to be reasons to upgrade every 18 to 24 months, when a new edition is released.
But those same factors have the potential to backfire, too. The more I think about it, the more I wonder: Where does it go from here? InDePhotoStrator was an early moniker some industry pundits gave it. And you know what? The all-for-one, one-for-all strategy worked. My Illustrator skills improved as a result of interactions with InDesign and Photoshop. As more Web features are incorporated into InDesign, will my need for Dreamweaver grow or lessen?
Back to economy and exposure. For many users, the question of pricing is tricky. On the one hand, CS5 editions are a bargain: Still, for many folks, even that can be a significant investment, especially today. If InDesign is your bread-and-butter application, do you really care about Flash Professional?
Adobe wants you to: Upgrade logic So the ultimate question is: Should you upgrade to CS5? If the last version you purchased was CS3 or before, then yes, definitely buy CS5. New features in flagship products like Photoshop and Flash are worth the price of admission. If your exposure to the other apps in the suite is limited, you may need to see how the products are starting to gel as synthesized media-creation tools. Take note, though: CS5 runs only on Intel-based Macs. I admit that this system requirement gives me pause.
I do my design and imaging on my trusty G5 tower. And quite frankly, my purse strings are tugged tighter than they used to be. I could get by on CS4 for a while, even if I did have the right hardware. The journalism geek in me loves being able to track text changes in InDesign CS5.
I could cite other examples, but you get my train of thought. Just ask Wired or The New York Times, both of which use InDesign and Flash in coordination to prepare print content for the Web and adapt Web video and animations for smart phones and tablet computers.
The online tools included in CS5 extend the serviceability of the applications, among them CS Review for coordinating contributors on design critiques and Adobe BrowserLab for previewing Web designs in different browsers.
Adobe will continue to roll out these online services and apps think Photoshop. You should become familiar with this approach to Adobe software sooner rather than later. With CS5, Adobe shows once again that it keeps pace with, and even stays a step ahead, of our changing times. I wouldn't blame you for thinking that way. But if you can, train for a marathon instead. Consider that the investment you make now will pay off in the future when even more twists appear in the road and the route alters its course.
She has also written several books on Adobe, most recently Page by Page, a look at the year evolution of Adobe InDesign. Download the PDF here. When you purchase something after clicking links in our articles, we may earn a small commission. Read our affiliate link policy for more details. At a Glance.