May 15, 2008

Counting chickens in Africa, via Photoshop

A few years ago I heard from a researcher at DuPont who was, as I recall, using Photoshop’s Histogram palette & other tools to analyze samples of Kevlar and other materials.  Later I visited the Johnson Space Flight Center and talked to a team about using Photoshop’s Ruler Tool to assess possible cracks in space shuttle heat shields photographed during flight.  No matter what you think a given feature is designed to do, customers will always find interesting ways to push it farther.

 

In that vein, Chris Ing gets crafty on JacksofScience.com, using the new analysis tools in PS CS3 Extended to do everything from estimating chicken density in Africa* (by analyzing the "integrated density" of various regions of an info graphic) to calculating the height of Kirsten Dunst (studiously cross-checked against something called Chickipedia–and no, I’m not feigning ignorance).  Should you find yourself "interested in comparing the circularity of your head to that of a friend," you’ve got a kindred spirit.

* Sorry, the pre-/post-hatched counting enhancement will have to wait for a future release. (We’ll sic Chris on it.) We’ve heard somewhere that it’s an important distinction…

Posted by John Nack at 4:54 PM on May 15, 2008

Comments

  • Rus Gow — 6:19 AM on May 17, 2008

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    Hey John,
    indeed, the PS Adobe CS3 experience is after the original CS release the best ever … exept you are working on an Intel-Mac running Leopard.
    We just had to get our heads around it, that Adobe’s CS4 will still be developed on carbon code base, on which also Apple is to blame, no doubt…
    But I just had to read in the support forums of your company, Adobe still recommand to run Tiger instead of Leopard to avoid certain and a lot of bugs.
    My goodie gush: Photoshop (also Illustrator) is a major. And its more than half a year since the release of 10.5. Not counted the time that went in, since Adobe developer teams received technical previews, drafts and beta releases for Leopard before.
    You folks at Adobe are already developing for CS4.
    You extended your product portfolio for so many applications.
    But I still cant type any text into palettes and dialoges (free transform, brush tips, marquee, cropping tool, etc).
    I still cant use spaces and expose properly: when I return to PS all the palettes are greyed out and I have to press tab to switch them on and off again, in order to re-initialize them and let their content to become visible.
    Using Expose and Spaces again: In “save for web”-dialoge (or others) active windows you need to confirm to progress in workflow, are appearing behing an inactive window instance of Photoshop no chance for further interaction to go on, no possibility to “esc” to get back … I several times hat to forced shut down PS in order to continue my work at all.
    Yepp, I have the latest updates for Adobe and OSX.
    Still its all the mungle in the jungle.
    Besides I cant use any default/native behavior of general mac apps: switching in dialoges with tab-key to confirm or cancel actions wont work, as Adobe software is based on carbon.
    Id agree that all together there is some unfortunate situation for you as developers on mac.
    But I also feel very disturbed, that you – no matter what role Apple is playing in this game – do not seem to be willing or able to get us users and customers around these issues.
    all your arguing is: peepz, please use tiger.
    this is so accusing and cunniving … please dont forget, a lot of people just dropped 3000 Euros into your pods to have the software we need for our buisiness … (in case of my company its been the design premium suite – no upgrade rabate)…
    sincere
    Russel
    .

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