Contemporary media is experienced, created, edited, remixed, organized and shared with software. This article approaches some of these questions via the analysis of a software application that has become synonymous with “digital media” – Adobe Photoshop.
This multiplicity of operations offered in contemporary application software creates a challenge for Software Studies. This article starts by proposing two such possible schemes and then tests them by analyzing a subset of Photoshop’s commands which, in a certain sense, stand-in for this application in our cultural imaginary: Filters.
It is important to point out that the two proposed schemes are intended to serve only as provisional categories. My first scheme that we will test divides all software techniques for working with media into two types depending on which data types they can work on.
1a) The first type is media creation, manipulation, and access techniques that are specific to particular types of data. 1b) The second type is new software techniques that can work with digital data in general (i.e. My second scheme also divides software techniques for working with media data into two types, but it does this in a different way. 2a) The first type is simulations of prior physical media augmented with new properties and functions.2 When we use computers to simulate some process in the real world – the behavior of a weather system, the processing of information in the brain, the deformation of a car in a crash – our concern is to correctly model the features of this process or system. Xerox brochure for Star workstation (officially known as officially known as the Xerox 8010 Information System) introduced in 1981.
2b) The second type is a number of new computational media that do not have any obvious equivalents in previous physical or electronic media. While for a media historian this scheme is quite meaningful, what about users who are “digital natives”? Thus, although users may not care that one software tool does something that was not possible before digital computers while another tool simulates previous physical or electronic media, the distinction itself between two types is something users experience in practice. The first thing that is easy to notice is that the names of many Photoshop filters refer to the techniques for image manipulation and creation and materials that were available before the development of media application software in the 1990s – painting, drawing and sketching, photography, glass, neon, photocopying.
This is a good example of my earlier point that simulations of prior physical media augment them with new properties. While some of these filters can be directly traced to previous physical and mechanical media such as oil painting and photography, others make a reference to actions or phenomena in the physical world that at first appear to have nothing to do with media. However, if we examine any of these filters in detail, we realize that things are not so simple.
The situation is further complicated by the fact that the results of applying the Wind filter to an image look pretty different compared to what the actual wind does to a tree or a field of grass. Although they represent a small subset of Photoshop’s extensive filter collection, these filters are central to all electronics, telecommunication and IT technologies. In their Photoshop implementation, these filters work on continuous-tone images, but since they can be also applied to sound and other types of signals, they actually belong to our “media-independent” category (1a). This is one of the most important theoretical dimensions in the shift from physical and mechanical media technologies to electronic media and then digital software. And this, in turn, makes possible the idea of information – a disembodied, abstract and universal dimension of any message separate from its content. The introduction of the coding stage allows for a new level of efficiency and speed in processing, transmitting and interacting with media data and communication content – and this is why first electronics and later, digital computers gradually replace all other media-specific tools and machines.
The field of digital image processing began to develop in the second part of the 1950s when scientists and the military realized that digital computers can be used to automatically analyze and improve the quality of aerial and satellite imagery collected for military reconnaissance and space research. In summary, Photoshop’s seemingly “born digital” (or “software-native”) filters have direct physical predecessors in analog filters.10 These analog filters were first implemented by the inventors of telephone, radio, telephone, electronic music instruments, and various other electronic media technologies during the first half of the 20th century.
The challenges in deciding in what category to place Photoshop filters persist if we continue going through the Filter menu. The shift from physical media tools and materials as algorithms designed to simulate the effects of these tools and materials has also another important consequence. For an example, lets analyze the behavior of Wave filter (located under the Distort submenu).
If we follow Lakoff ‘s theory of metaphor, some details of the Wave filter operation – along with many other Photoshop filters that refer to the physical world – can be understood as similar metaphorical projections. The filter generates sine wave functions (y = sin x), adds them up and uses the result to distort an image. However, at some point the metaphorical connection to real world waves breaks, and the use of Lakoff’s theory no longer helps. If we keep the number of generators small (2 – 5), sometimes these random values add up to a result that still resembles a wave; in other cases they do not. Wave filter can create a practically endless variety of abstract patterns – and most of them are not periodic in an obvious way, i.e.
The same considerations apply to many other Photoshop filters that make references to physical media.
The same “high-level” automation underlies so-called “generative (or “procedural”) software techniques common today.
However, as they are implemented in media applications such as Photoshop, software techniques that simulate previous media and the software techniques that are explicitly procedural and use higher-level automation are part of the same continuum. I started this discussion of Photoshop filters to test the usefulness of two schemes for classifying the seemingly endless variety of software techniques available in media software: 1) media independent vs. Although the previous discussion highlighted the difficult borderline cases, in other cases the divisions are clear. However, beyond these distinctions suggested by the two schemes I proposed, all software techniques for media creation, editing, and interaction also share some additional common traits that we have not discussed yet. Regardless of whether they refer to some pre-existing instrument, action, or phenomena in the physical world or not, the media techniques available in application software are implemented as computer programs and functions. The pioneers of media software aimed to extend the properties of media technologies and tools they were simulating in a computer – in each case, as formulated by Kay and Goldberg, the goal was to create “a new medium with new properties.” Consequently, software techniques that refer to previous physical, mechanical, or electronic tools and creative processes are also “new media” because they behave so differently from their predecessors. In other words, regardless of where a particular technique would fall in our classification schemes, all these techniques are instances of one type of technology – interactive application software. For our final analysis, we will go outside the Filter menu and examine one of the key features of Photoshop that originally differentiated it from many “consumer” media editors – the Layers palette.
We can compare this fundamental change in the concept and practice of image creation with a similar change that took place in mapping – a shift from paper maps to GIS (Geographical Information System). GIS “captures, stores, analyzes, manages, and presents data that is linked to location.”19 The central concept of GIS is a stack of data layers united by common spatial coordinates.
In the GIS paradigm, space functions as a media platform which can hold all kinds of data types together – points, 2D outlines, maps, images, video, numerical data, text, links. Photoshop Help explains Layers in the following way: “Photoshop layers are like sheets of stacked acetate. It is not surprising that Photoshop Layers are closely related to 20th century visual media techniques such as cell animation, as well as to various practices of pre-digital compositing such as multiple exposure, background projection, mattes in filmmaking, and video keying.21 However, there is also a strong conceptual link between image Layers and 20th century music technology.
Finally, yet another lead links Layers to a general principle of modern computer programming.
Illustration of digital compositing from Thomas Porter and Tom Duff, “Compositing Digital Images,” Computer Graphics vol.
Porter and Duff’s paper makes an analogy between creating a final scene by compositing 3D elements and assembling separate code modules into a complete computer program.
Experience has taught us to break down large bodies of source code into separate modules in order to save compilation time. The same idea of treating an image as a collection of elements that can be changed independently and re-assembled into new images is behind Photoshop Layers. This link between a popular software technique for image editing and a general principle of modern computer programming is very telling. In short: through the work of many people, from Ivan Sutherland in early 1960s, to the teams at ILM, Macromedia, Adobe, Apple and other companies in the 1980s and 1990s, media becomes software – with all the theoretical and practical consequences such a transition entails. Talk about Mac, people always think about the Mac must be the most fantastic computer in the world (at lease the Apple fans consider this). Once we dug deep into the feature set of Office 2011 for Mac, we saw there were several enhancements that made the whole suite better, and some of the niftier tweaks are even Mac-exclusive. One of the major new changes to the suite (on the Windows side, too) is the ability to collaborate and share your work using Web apps.
All of the new tweaks to the interface and each of the apps in the suite make Office 2011 for Mac a great option, but with the rise of cloud-based computing and online office suites like Google Docs, we wonder how long the big desktop apps like Office will remain on top. Photoshop also brings improved precision to setting colors and custom dimensions for shapes. With awareness of Internet security at an all-time high, keeping track of the unique passwords needed for logins can be difficult. Available as a free plugin for Safari, the program’s basic features do not require any payment to use. Though many will complain about lost features, the fact is that iTunes 11 is a major improvement with a significant performance boost.
Please make sure your version of Photoshop is up-to-date and that the Creative Cloud app is up-to-date as well. Photoshop CS5 will install and run on 10.10 (but you do have to install Java (JRE) which was used for CS Live services in CS5). It appears that the OS updater is corrupting PS CS5 if it was installed prior to updating to Yosemite.
Hi Robin, i have same problem on Photoshop CS6 (13.02) so when i using brush its not reply to any shortcut like zoom in or out, panning and etc, and yea after choosing another tool and then back to brush its works. This problem of shortcuts drove me really crazy!!… I could not have find by myself that it was a problem with the Wacom tablet. One another thing is, applying shortcut like command +z or, changing between foreground and background pressing X, have to press several times.
I have to say that I have the same issue, except it isn’t just the brush as it is any tool. I also looked it up and apparently this is an issue with other PS users where the hotkeys delay or do not work properly. The only issue I’ve experienced so far is when I try to use the space bar to activate Hand Tool.
I downloaded the Java, and it looks like most of the other programs in the suite will load (Dreamweaver, InDesign, Illustrator, etc). Hi Liz, It appears that the OS updater is corrupting PS CS5 if it was installed prior to updating to Yosemite. Then working in Lightroom 4.4 I tried to send a photo to Photoshop CS5 for further processing.
Tried opening iPhoto (OK) and sent an image to CS5 from there (used to be automatic by clicking edit) …with the same result. Roughly 6 months after Apple released the first Retina Mac, Adobe has updated Photoshop to make use of every one of those double-density pixels (aka HiDPI). If you subscribe to Adobe Creative Cloud, or if you own a Photoshop CS6 license, head on over to their software update tool and give it check. Premiere went Retina a long time ago and it was Photoshop that was announced as retina at the keynote so strange!
While Macs are more popular than they’ve ever been, Windows computers still form the majority of the market. Fortunately the increased popularity of Macs makes this split environment easier than ever.
Love, hate, or just tolerate Microsoft, there is one suite you have little chance of avoiding when exchanging written documents or spreadsheets with Windows users: Microsoft Office. Office has been available for both platforms for a long time, and comically Microsoft Office came out for the Mac before Windows even existed.
The Adobe applications also adapt to the environment they run under without losing sacrificing the unique feel of the application and feeling like part of the environment.
For collaboration, you can also share a Dropbox folder with another user and anything placed in that folder will be shared with the other person’s Dropbox folder on their computer. Smile’s TextExpander software is a well known and much loved way to speed up entering text.
TextExpander includes the ability to sync these text replacements, called snippets, between computers using Dropbox. RoboForm will store the logins and help create unique, secure passwords for every web site that you use. There is no shortage of task management programs for all operating systems, but few allow synchronization of tasks and status across platforms. While there are many cloud transfer tools, sometimes you have to rely on the old reliable methods to send files to another computer, especially when sending web files to a server.
Cyberduck allows connecting to almost any service you would want to transfer files between.
Cyberduck is one of the nicest, and is available in the App Store or it can be freely downloaded from the company’s web site. You might want to mention specifically Office 365 and Adobe Creative Cloud, the subscription equivalents of Office and Creative Suite. Like other professional programs for media authoring and editing, Photoshop’s menus contain many dozens of separate commands. If we are to understand how software applications shape our worlds and our imaginations (what people imagine they can do with software), we need some way of sorting all these operations into a fewer categories so we can start building a theory of application software. They provide one possible set of directions – an equivalent of North, South, West and East for a map where we can locate multiple operations of media design software. In other words, these techniques can be used only on a particular data type (or a particular kind of “media content”).
What matters here are the relations between software techniques and pre-digital media technologies.
We want to be able to test how our model would behave in different conditions with different data, and the last thing we want to do is for the computer to introduce some new properties into the model that we ourselves did not specify. These software users may never have directly used any other media besides tablets or laptops, or mobile media devices (mobile phones, cameras, music players); and they are also likely to be unfamiliar with the details of 20th century cell animation, film editing equipment, or any other pre-digital media technology.

For instance, you have to explicitly move the cursor in a desired pattern to produce a particular brushstroke using a brush tool; you also have to explicitly type every letter on a keyboard to produce a desired sentence. The tools that belong to the first type showcase the ability of computers to automate processes; the tools that belong to the second type use invisible low-level automation behind the scenes while requiring users to direct them manually. For instance, the Extrude filter generates a 3D set of blocks or pyramids and paints image parts on their faces, while the Wave filter creates the effect of ripples on the surface of an image.
However, they do look rather similar to a photograph of a real windy scene taken with a long exposure. The great majority of the filters make references to previous physical media or our experiences in the physical world – at least in terms of how they are named. Moreover, they are not unique to processing digital images but can be used on any kind of data – sounds, television transmission, data captured by an environmental sensor, data captured by a medical imaging devices, etc. In other words, they are general techniques developed first in engineering and later also in computer science for signal and information processing.
Previously, physical and mechanical media tools were used to create content which was directly accessible to human senses (with some notable exceptions like Morse code) – and therefore the possibilities of each tool and material were driven by what was meaningful to a particular human sense.
Rather than operating on sounds, images, film, or text directly, electronic and digital devices operate on the continuous electronic signals or discrete numerical data.
Operations such as those just mentioned are now used to automatically process the signals and data in various ways – reducing the size of storage or bandwidth needed, improving quality of a signal to get rid of noise, and of course – perhaps most importantly – to send media data over communication networks.
They were already widely used in the electronics industry and studied in the field of analog signal processing before they were adapted for digital image processing.
The difficulties in deciding where to place this or that technique are directly related to the history of digital computers as simulation machines.
Depending on the choice of parameter values, this filter can either produce effects that closely resemble our perceptual experience of actual physical waves, or new effects that are related to such waves metaphorically. If we increase the number of generators (it can go up to 999), the pattern produced by the filter no longer appears to be periodic, and can therefore no longer can be related to real waves even metaphorically. As we already explained, when the number of generators is set to 1, the algorithm generates a single sine function. But when the number of functions is increased, the result of adding these separate functions with unique random parameters never looks like a wave.
Similar to a Wave filter, the filters gathered under the Artistic and Texture submenus produce very precise simulations of the visual effects of physical media with a particular range of parameter settings; but when the parameters are outside of this range, these filters generate a variety of abstract patterns.
Earlier I pointed out that the software tools that simulate physical instruments – paint brushes, pens, rulers, erasers, etc.
The work ranges from still and motion graphics to architecture and games – from live visuals and animations by software artist Lia13 to the massive procedurally generated worlds in the game Minecraft .14 Other generative projects use algorithms to automatically create complex shapes, animations, spatial forms, music, architectural plans, etc. As we saw with the Wave filter, the same algorithm can generate an abstract image or a realistic one. For example, the Brushstrokes filter family in Photoshop clearly takes inspiration from earlier physical media tools, while Add Noise does not. Conceptually, these traits are different from common media independent techniques such as copy and paste. And, as Kay and Goldberg explained in their 1977 article quoted earlier, interactive software is qualitatively different from all previous media. Instead of working on a single design, with each change immediately (and in the case of physical media such as paint or ink, irreversibly) affecting this image, she now works with a collection of separate elements.
To again quote Photoshop CS4’s online Help, “Sometimes layers don’t contain any apparent content.
Just as all media professionals use Photoshop, today the majority of professional users that deal with physical spaces – city offices, utility companies, oil companies, marketers, hospital emergency teams, geologists and oceanographers, military and security agencies, police, etc.
There is an obvious conceptual connection to the use of layers in Photoshop and other media software applications – however, GIS systems work with any data that has geospatial coordinates rather than only images positioned on separate layers.
You can see through transparent areas of a layer to the layers below.”20 Although not explicitly named by this Help article, the reference here is to the standard technique of 20th century commercial animation – cell animation.
As Porter and Duff explain, the experience of writing software in this way led them to consider using the same strategy for making images and animations.
An error in one routine forces only the recompilation of its module and the relatively quick reloading of the entire program. Importantly, Photoshop was developed at the same place where the principles of digital compositing were defined earlier. It is a perfect example of how all elements of modern media software ecosystem – applications, file formats, interfaces, techniques, tools and algorithms used to create, view, edit, and share media content – have not just one but two parents, each with their own set of DNAs: media and cultural practices, on the one hand, and software development, on the other. This article dives into Photoshop Filter and Layers menus to discuss some of these consequences – but more still remain to be uncovered.
Though the latest package is still not on par with the Windows version (you get only the four main programs–a big difference when you consider the Windows version has 10), Microsoft made a big leap with this latest version for the Mac in several other ways.
Certainly many Mac users will look first at Apple’s iWork for a productivity suite, and it is a great office suite in its own right. This latest Office client for Mac is definitely a solid offering, but how long can Microsoft hold on to its dominance? Photoshop CS6 brings a darker, more focused default work environment, with menus and toolbars painted in dark grays and blacks. Photoshop CS6 finally empowers users with the ability to search within their layers, a crucial benefit for those who work on projects with many elements and layer groups like UI and Web designers.
Creative Suite 6 now accepts the standard 3-6 character HEX codes in their color selectors, which is key for designers who want to call out specific Web colors. LastPass for Safari for Mac allows a user to sign in with one password and save those multiple logins for use when needed. Apple iTunes for Mac continues doing its thing, managing and playing your media, constructing playlists, selling music, and renting movies; but the interface is always evolving.
People avoiding Apple iTunes for Mac for fear of losing certain features are missing out on a superior app. Also i notified some slow loading application, opening files and when use color picker tool then back to brush its has small delay.
After using brush-related tool, screen got stuck and have to manually choose the other part of the photoshop and it comes back. Using hot keys in quick succession ie: brush(b) to eraser (e) so I will be stuck on the brush tool even when I hotkeyed for the eraser tool, etc. Quit or Exit other running applications one-by-one until the keyboard shortcuts work in Photoshop.
Adobe was expected to go Retina by the end of the year, and they made it with weeks to spare.
Many common applications are cross platform and available for both Mac and Windows computers, and open standards and web apps make up for the rest. The vast majority of businesses still use Microsoft Office, and most home users are so conditioned to using Office that they’d hardly believe one could use a computer without it. I use both the Windows and Mac versions on a regular basis and rarely run into problems moving even complex documents between the two.
Here, the primary platform for the system has historically been the Mac, but the Windows versions of the suite are now equally powerful. For graphics work it’s hard to beat the cross platform compatibility and functionality of the Adobe suite. If you have a desktop and laptop, you install Dropbox on both computers and any files placed in the created Dropbox folders will be copied to the other computers.
Breevy is a Windows program that provides this text replacement functionality for Windows computers. These allow you to remember one password and that passwords protects the individual passwords for the sites you need.
It supports reminders, recurring tasks, and subtasks making it easier to track progress on a project consisting of multiple steps. This is a very popular and well written application that supports almost any type of transfer you could ask for.
Unlike their pay-once versions, the subscriptions let you install their software on more than one computer and choose between Mac and PC on one subscription. To understand media today we need to understand media software – its genealogy (where it comes from), its anatomy (interfaces and operations), and its practical and theoretical effects.1 How does media authoring software shape the media being created, making some design choices seem natural and easy to execute, while hiding other design possibilities? If we consider that almost all the commands contain multiple options that allow each command do a number of different things, the complete number runs into thousands.
This can’t be achieved by simply following the top menu categories offered by applications.
Like any first sketch, no matter how imprecise, this map is useful because now we have something to modify as we go forward. I am going to refer to these techniques as media specific (the word “media” in this case stands for “data type”).
The examples are “view control,” hyperlinking, sort, search, and network protocols such as HTTP. In short, when we use computers as a general-purpose medium for simulation, we want this medium to be completely “transparent.” But what happens when we simulate different media in a computer?
Does this mean that the distinction between software simulations of previously existing media tools and new “born digital” media techniques has no meaning for digital natives but only matters for historians of media such as myself? To understand why this is the case, let’s ask if all “born digital” media techniques available in media authoring software applications may have something in common – besides the fact that they did not exist before software.
In contrast, many of the techniques that do not simulate anything that existed previously – at least, not in any obvious way – offer higher-level automation of creative processes. These options make possible to control filter’s visual effects with a degree of precision that would be hard to achieve when using the corresponding physical tool. These controls not only offer many options but also often allow you to set filter’s properties numerically by choosing a precise value from a range. This is how Photoshop CS4’s built-in Help describes this filter: “Places tiny horizontal lines in the image to create a windblown effect. Therefore, we can think of the name “Wind” both as a metaphor – to help us imagine what a particular algorithmic transformation does to an image – and as a simulation of a particular photographic technique (long exposure). A paintbrush could create brushstrokes that had color, thickness, and shape – properties directly speaking to human vision and touch.
This allows for the definition of various operations that work on any signal or any set of numbers – regardless of what this signal or numbers may represent (images, video, student records, financial data, etc.). The Photoshop filters that automatically enhance image appearance (for instance, by boosting contrast, or by reducing noise) come directly from that period (late 1950s – early1960s).
We can use the same filter to achieve a look that may indeed appear to closely simulate the effect of the corresponding physical tool or physical phenomena – or a look which is completely different from both nature and older media and which can be only achieved though algorithmic manipulation of the pixels. Lakoff proposed that the majority of our abstract concepts are metaphorical projections from sensorimotorial experiences with our own body and the surrounding physical world.12 “Making waves” and other metaphors derived from our perceptual experience of seeing real waves exemplify this general mechanism of language. If the option is to set to 2, the algorithm generates two functions; if it is set to 3, it generates three functions, and so on.
So although the filter is called “Wave,” only a tiny part of its space of possible patterns corresponds to the wave-like visual effects in the real world. Similarly, particle systems algorithms are used by new media artists and motion graphics designers to generate abstract animations; the same algorithms are also widely used in film production to generate realistic-looking explosions, fireworks, flocks of birds and other physical natural phenomena. The Copy and Paste commands are the examples of media independent techniques; Auto Contrast and Replace Color commands are the examples of media-specific techniques.
Additionally, their interfaces use established conventions employed in all application software – regardless of whether these tools are part of spreadsheet software, inventory management software, financial analysis software, or web design software. New functionality (for instance, multiple zoom levels, the presence of media independent techniques (copy, paste, search, etc.) and standard interface conventions (such as numerical controls for every tool, the preview option, or commands history) further separate even the most “realistic” media simulation tool from its predecessors.
She can play with these elements, deleting, creating, importing and modifying them, until she is satisfied with the final composition – or a set of possible compositions that can be defined using Layer Groups.
For example, an adjustment layer holds color or tonal adjustments that affect the layers below it. In Photoshop the layers are still conceptually subordinated to the final image – when you are using the application, it continuously renders all visible layers together to show this image.
Thinking about various possible sources of this concept and also considering how it relates to other modern media editing techniques takes us in a number of different directions.
Like a film camera mounted above the animation stand, Photoshop software is continuously “shooting” the image created through a juxtaposition of visual elements contained on separate layers.
The inventor of multitrack recording was the guitarist Les Paul; in 1953 he commissioned Ampex to built the first eight-track recorder. The key idea was to render each separate element with a matte channel containing transparency information.
The first version of the program was written by brothers Thomas and John Knoll when Thomas took a six-month leave from the PhD program at the University of Michigan in 1988 to join his brother who was then working at ILM. Not only has it nearly reached feature parity (and cross compatibility) with the Mac counterparts to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, but it has finally added Outlook, the e-mail and scheduling client Mac business fans have been clamoring for for years. But if you work with primarily Windows users who use Office, it’s tough to beat the automatic compatibility of using the same programs.
Of course, if you’re itching for a brighter look, CS6 gives users lighter-colored interfaces, reminiscent of previous versions. You can also generate custom-size shapes by inputting numerical pixel values to add more precise mock-up elements.
The only indication that the plugin is running is a small icon next to the URL bar in the Web browser. It will change if i keep clicking the hotkey or if I click on a layer, however it’s still very troublesome. You can certainly try it on a test partition to see if it works well enough for your needs. Working with others means even full time Mac users often needs to exchange files and data with users running Windows. For word processing and spreadsheets, the Microsoft Word and Excel formats are the standard most expect to receive. I’ve never seen moving Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat, or Premiere files between Mac OS and Windows cause a problem with the file.

Plus, it’s rather impressive how well Adobe has done making their entire suite of apps work so well on both platforms. And since Dropbox stores previous versions of files when a change occurs, you also have a safety net in case someone accidentally deletes a file or makes a change you’d like to undo. For example, instead of typing out your full address you can simply type hhome, press a hotkey, and the shortcut will be replaced with your full address in the correct format.
It contains a wonderful feature for the user of both system in that Breevy can also sync multiple computers using Dropbox.
Security breeches show that using the same if and password for every site is asking for trouble.
You can create unique passwords for every site you need and only have to remember one which makes it easier for that to be a complex and hard to guess password. Both integrate into the major browsers on each platform such as Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Internet Explorer, and Safari. It looks almost identical on both the Mac and PC and syncs through the company’s servers, allowing you to track tasks no matter which computer you use. These allow easy transfer of files between computers with few problems regardless of the operating systems of the source and destination machines. For example, the technique of geometrical constraint satisfaction already available in the first graphical editor – Ivan Sutherland ’s Sketchpad (1961-1962) – can work on graphical data defined by points and lines. They are general ways of manipulating data regardless of what this data encodes: pixel values, text characters, 3D shapes, etc. In this case, the appearance of new properties may be welcome as they can extend the expressive and communication potential of these media. In the case of application software, the execution of any command involves “low-level” automation (since a computer automatically executes a sequence of steps of the algorithm behind the command).
Rather than controlling every detail, a user specifies parameters and controls and sets the tool in motion.
For example, the Palette Knife filter offers three options: Stroke Size, Stroke Detail, and Softness. In short, although its name points to the physical world, its actual operations may also refer to a pre-digital media technology. Similarly, the settings of photographic camera controls affected the sharpness and contrast of captured photos – characteristics meaningful to human vision. This is true not only for a significant portion of media editing techniques – filters, digital paintbrushes and pencils, CAD tools, virtual musical instruments and keyboards, etc. What begins as a reference to a physical world outside of the computer if we use default settings can turn into something totally alien with a change in the value of a single parameter. Applying this single function to an image distorts it using a periodically varying pattern. A user sets the parameter values and the algorithm automatically creates the desired result.
Additionally, because these applications simulate older manual model of creation, they are also seen as less “new media specific” then generative software. In another example, procedural techniques often used in architectural design to create abstract spatial structures are also used in video games to generate realistic 3D environments. The first scheme draws our attention to the fact that all media applications share some genes, so to speak, while also providing some techniques that can only work on particular data types. Interactivity, customization, the possibility to both simulate other media and information technologies and to define new ones, processing of vast amounts of information in real-time, control and interaction with other machines such as sensors, support of both distributed asynchronous and real-time collaboration – these and many other functionalities enabled by modern software (of course, working together with middleware, hardware, and networks) separate software from all previous media and information technologies and tools invented by humans. And since the contents and the settings of all layers are saved in an image file, she can always come back to this image to generate new versions or to use its elements in new compositions. Rather than edit image pixels directly, you can edit an adjustment layer and leave the underlying pixels unchanged.”18 In other words, the layers may contain editing operations that can be turned on and off, and re-arranged in any order. Consumer mapping software such as Google Maps, MapQuest and Google Earth can be thought of as very simplified GIS systems.
As used by professionals, “maps” constructed with GIS software may contain hundreds or even thousands of layers. So although you can use a Photoshop image as a kind of media database – a way to collect together different image elements – this is not the intended use (you are supposed to use separate programs such as Adobe Bridge or Aperture to do that).
First of all, layers is not specific to raster image editors such as Photoshop; this technique is also used in vector image editors (Illustrator), motion graphics and compositing software (After Effects), video editors (Final Cut), and sound editors (Pro Tools). This allowed the filmmakers to create each element separately and then later combine them into a photorealistic 3D scene. Add the ease of compatibility with a strong feature set across the entire suite and you have a desktop office package that’s almost a must-have in both large and small businesses, and even home productivity settings. Tools are more streamlined thanks to Adobe’s continuing move towards collapsible menus, while leaving the primary tools visible. Users can access its settings and disable it if needed by going into Safari’s preferences section.
We scrolled through our 2,231 albums, smoothly and precisely, but iTunes 10 could not handle a library of this size very well, making browsing through our library a jerky, jumpy experience. When i open the photoshop application nothing appears other than the menu selections at the top i.e. I routinely edit Photoshop files on my MacBook, and later do further work on my PC with no problems.
These can also include more complex formatted text and prompts to enter text easing the creation of customizable form emails for example. However, creating a unique login for every site invites the use of simple passwords that are easy to guess or hack. They also offer the ability to synchronize through the cloud or through the servers of the company. Whether you’re hosting your own website, or backing up files in Amazon S3, a file transfer app can sure be a handy tool.
In addition to SFTP and FTP, it allows connections to WebDAV, Amazon S3, Google Drive, Windows Azure, and Rackspace.
If that’s not an option then you can make things easier by choosing tools with the most compatibility between them.
This idea was already clearly articulated at Xerox PARC in the first part of the 1970s – a place that more than any other is responsible for creating the category of software applications. However, what it is important from a user point of view is the level of automation being offered in the command’s interface. All generative (also called “procedural”) techniques available in media software fall into this category.
Stroke Size can take values between 1 and 50; the other two options have similarly large ranges. A different way to express this is to say that the “message” was not encoded in any way; it was created, stored, and accessed in its native form. In other words, many algorithms only simulate the effects of physical tools and machines, materials or physical world phenomena when used with particular parameter settings; when these settings are changed, they no longer functions as simulations.
This is both a theoretical point, and the reality of professional design and image editing in our software society. An image is thus redefined as a provisional composite of both content elements and various modification operations that are conceptually separate from the elements. For instance, since 2004 Apple has included the multitrack recorder and editor GarageBand on all its new computers. You can define the layer style for various folders, potentially opening the door to even more complex effects and filter combinations.
Essentially, the plugin allows users to create one username and password combination that can be entered when beginning a browsing session. When we clicked on an album cover, a list of songs and controls expands out right beneath it, in a dynamically created color scheme based off the album art–a very nice touch. A final step to make the process smoother is to use a tool such as Dropbox that allows easier sharing and integration on both operating systems.
Another example: today image editing programs usually include various filters such as Blur and Sharpen that can operate on continuous tone images. An example of such a technique is Douglass Englebart’s “view control” (mid 1960s) – the idea that the same information can be displayed in many different ways.
When Alan Kay and his colleagues at PARC created computer simulations of existing physical media – i.e. For example, rather than having to create a rectangular grid made of thousands of lines by hand, a user can specify the width and the height of the grid and the size of one cell, and the program will generate the desired result.
Or perhaps, we can think of it as an example of a conceptual “blend” (which is how, according to Conceptual Blending theory,5 many concepts in natural languages get formed): “wind” plus “image” results in a new concept actualized in the operations of the Wind filter.
So if we were to redraw the famous diagram of a communication system by Claude Shannon (1948)8 for the pre-electronics era, we would have to delete the encoding and decoding stages. Each of these operations and structures can, both conceptually and historically, be traced to previous physical or mechanical operations and to strategies of data, knowledge and memory management that were already in place before the 1940s.
Any professional design created in Photoshop is likely to use multiple layers (in Photoshop CS4, a single image can have thousands of layers).
When professional users work with GIS application, they may never output a single map that would contain all the data.
Other popular software implementations include free application Audacity and professional-level Pro Tools. As a user browses through secure sites, the plugin enters previous stored login information, keeping the user from having to sift through multiple passwords to enter. We thought this was a vast improvement over Cover Flow, the previous, and now gone, integration of album art that was useless as a navigation tool. Then go to your Breevy computers and enable the Dropbox Sync with the TextExpander compatible option. This concept is now implemented in most media editors so it works with images, 3D models, video files, animation projects, graphic designs, sound compositions, and text. Another example of this higher-level automation is interpolation of key values offered by animation software.
For example, computer “files“ and “folders” refer to their paper predecessors already standard in every office.
Since each layer can always be made invisible, layers can also act as containers for elements that potentially may go into the composition; they can also hold different versions of these elements. Instead, a user selects the data she needs to work with at that moment and then performs various operations on this data (practically this means selecting a subset of all data layers available). Clicking on a song now reveals a small arrow next to it, which when clicked opens up a context menu. When i open the drop down menus to try an open a file it doesn’t let me click on anything. We can go with such examples: it is would be as meaningless to try to “extrude” a text or “interpolate” it as to define a number of columns and tab stops for an image or a sound composition. View control has also become part of modern OS (operating systems such as Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, or Google Chrome OS). Writing about their work in 1997, Kay and Adele Goldberg for instance point out that “It [the electronic book] need not be treated as a simulated paper book since this is a new medium with new properties. In a 20th century animation production, a key animator drew key frames which were then forwarded to human inbetweeners who created all the frames in between the key frames. As it turns out, all these filters are also software simulations that refer to things that already existed before digital computers.
The first commercial digital computers from IBM were marketed as faster equivalents of electro-mechanical calculators, tabulators, sorters and other office equipment for data processing that IBM had already been selling for decades. A designer can control the transparency of each layer, group them together, change their order, etc.
Additional features, including sending data and generating new random passwords, may be unlocked with a premium subscription for $1 per month. From there, you can start a Genius-based shuffle, create a Genius playlist, or go to the song’s associated Album or Artist view. We use view control daily when we change the files “view” between “icons,” “list,” and “columns” (these are the names used in Mac OS X; other operating systems may use different names to refer to the same views). Animation software automates the process of creating in-between drawings by automatically interpolating the values between the keyframes.
However, whenever some physical operations and structures were simulated in a computer, they were simultaneously enhanced and augmented. However, many of the program’s premium features are available in other, free programs. We found the interface redesign to be a vast improvement, even extending to a dramatically upgraded Mini Player. This process of transferring physical world properties into a computer while augmenting them continues today – think, for instance of the multi-touch interface popularized by iPhone (2007). Despite this, the automatic retrieval of passwords as a user browses is a welcome advantage over other programs. Thus, while Alan Turing defined the digital computer as a general-purpose simulation machine, when we consider its subsequent development and use, it is more appropriate to think of a computer as a simulation-augmentation machine.
Up Next shows you the next batch of songs that will play, whether you’re listening to an album, playlist, or just shuffling. For instance, you can select a file name in a directory, a group of pixels in an image, or a set of polygons in a 3D model, and then cut, copy, and paste these objects.
We were able to delete and reorder the songs listed, but couldn’t add specific songs, which iTunes DJ could do.

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