December 30, 2008
Photoshop & hidden menu items
David Pogue asked a good question the other day:
Is there any way to make CS4 stop hiding menu
commands it doesn’t think I want? Or is every menu selection an additional
I knew what had happened. By default Photoshop doesn’t hide menu items. If you use the workspace switcher (screenshot) in the upper-right corner of the app, however, you may end up changing more than panel (palette) locations. You may apply a menu configuration that hides certain menu items.
In CS4 the "Basics" workspace hides some of the more advanced/esoteric menu items. The idea, of course, is to slim down the application so that it’s less overwhelming to new users. Once you’ve applied this workspace, menus will be shorter & will feature an entry for "Show All Menu Items" at the end. Photoshop does pop a dialog box asking whether you want to apply a workspace that changes menus and/or shortcuts, but I think it’s one of those dialogs that makes people say, "Uhhhh… I don’t really want to think about this… so, ‘Yes’?"
Long story short, to get things back to normal, just choose the "Essentials" workspace (which is the default). Photoshop will reset panel, menu, and keyboard shortcut settings.
Frankly this area of PS remains a work in progress. We’ve been slowly building up ways to customize your work environment (workspaces, editable keyboard shorcuts & menu configurations, and now Configurator), but I don’t feel we’ve really "tied the room together" yet. I’d like to see Photoshop (and other Suite apps) ship with workspaces that truly present "everything you need, nothing you don’t" on a moment-by-moment, task-by-task basis. Lightroom takes this approach with its modules, but I think we can go much farther. (And let me add, lest anyone freak out, that I imagine all of this being optional. No one wants to compromise the very general, highly flexible work environments the CS apps present today.)