January 22, 2014

Feedback, please: Do you like the “What’s New” videos in Illustrator CC?

“You guys have added 500 features since May?! Man, I just can’t keep up…”

I know: we get that a lot. All the thoughtful, kickass functionality in the world doesn’t matter if you, the customer, don’t find & use it.

That’s why Adobe’s exploring some new ways to help you find & learn new tools. What do you think of the way the latest rev of Illustrator CC highlights & demos key enhancements?

  1. If you’ve updated Illustrator CC, have you seen the What’s New dialog and videos in the latest update? (screenshot below)
  2. Do you like this dialog & find it useful? Or do you find it intrusive/annoying?
  3. If you like it, do you think we should put it in the other apps too?


AI WhatsNew

Posted by John Nack at 7:59 AM on January 22, 2014


  • Pete in Texas — 8:35 AM on January 22, 2014

    Yes, don’t see the downside from our point of view. But I love taking a short break to see ways to do something new, or in a new way.

  • Jim Goshorn — 8:35 AM on January 22, 2014

    I think the dialog is a very good idea and would like to see it implemented in all the apps. It is very handy to see videos for the all the new features which explain them in detail. Since you have the Don’t Show Again checkbox, the user can dismiss it after looking at the videos.

  • Ben Lozano — 9:02 AM on January 22, 2014

    I don’t like it. I don’t use Illustrator every day. I usually open it when I need to edit a linked object in InDesign. So I want to open the file quickly, edit it, save it and go back to InDesign. The “What’s New” dialogue was an extra step I wasn’t anticipating.

    Could you put this dialogue in the Creative Cloud menu? If I am going to update my apps from there, why not have this below the Update All button and release notes? I usually go to this menu when I have some downtime anyway.

    • Jonathan Hughes — 9:59 AM on January 22, 2014

      You can click the box that says “Don’t Show this Again” so it only pops up the first time. I can’t imagine that having to close that window one time in a program you don’t use regularly would use up too much of your time.

  • Dave2 — 9:41 AM on January 22, 2014

    I thought it was a pretty smart way of informing users about new features… so, yes, I liked it and found it useful. It’s not annoying because I checked “Don’t Show Again” after watching the videos. And, yes, I think it should be rolled out to other apps.

    I just wish there was a video explaining why you can no-longer click-drag in the toolbar to get a sub-item, and instead have to use a productivity-killing click-pause-drag to access them.

    • Terry H, — 4:27 PM on January 24, 2014

      Dave2 — maybe you should check out another new feature in AI CC : Custom Tool panels. That way you can create a Tools panel with just the tools you need, including sub-items or hidden tools. http://adobe.ly/1el2pJI

  • Eric Sackett — 9:47 AM on January 22, 2014

    I think this is a great way to educate busy designers.

  • Jonathan Hughes — 10:00 AM on January 22, 2014

    I like them. Having them great me when I first open the program is very handy.

  • Brian Spence — 11:28 AM on January 22, 2014

    Yep, love the idea!

  • Jeff — 11:30 AM on January 22, 2014

    I like how it brings attention to new functionality, but not how obtrusive the panel is.

    I would much rather see some kind of dedicated “Training” panel where information like this could be stowed and referenced later – like the Adobe Exchange Panel. It could become “the place to go” for quick overviews of all the tools. Not sure what kind of bloat that would add – maybe tie it to the online help so that the files are only referenced online.

    As new features/videos get added, provide a small numbered icon in the top menu bar (similar to how CC updates are handled today) to let the user know that Adobe has kindly released some new training specific to the application at hand.

  • Wayne — 11:54 AM on January 22, 2014

    I think this is a great idea as I feel the days of sitting down and reading the manual are over. Not because we don’t read the manual, but I think most people learn on “demand” these days. We are constantly upgrading our skills based on the jobs we do. Now that the whole CC suite is being updated continuously a central location for learning should be important part of the Adobe Creative Cloud model. How many people can remember the new features in Photoshop CS4 for example? Across the whole suite there are just to many things to remember off hand. I think it would be great idea to have these kinds “new feature” reminders as CC develops. Of course please have it so these panels can be turned off on startup and include it as a panel that we can access when we want.

  • Jeff — 12:15 PM on January 22, 2014

    To Wayne’s point…I’ve been wondering what the long-term impact of the CC move will be on the peripheral industry of training manuals?

    Without the major release cycles of the past – what happens to the “Classrooms in a Book” or “Visual Quick Start Guides”. What is their cue that it is time to release an updated version as the applications evolve continually in small increments?

  • Steve Laskevitch — 12:44 PM on January 22, 2014

    Yes and Yes. I like, and I’d like to see it in other places. I’ve asked my students, too, and they agree. And they are the folks who are invested in learning the products; I’m just an obsessive freak.

  • J. Peterson — 1:33 PM on January 22, 2014

    Also thumbs up. The clips were very quick and to the point. It’s not in the way at all, even if I didn’t care about a particular feature. I think people appreciate seeing how their subscription $$ is spent.

  • J. Peterson — 1:37 PM on January 22, 2014

    “You guys have added 500 features since May?! Man, I just can’t keep up…”

    It’s the Winchester Mystery App – we have to keep adding features or the spirits will get us.

    (Local San Jose joke)

    [Oh, I know, I know… –J.]

  • John Stevenson — 5:56 PM on January 22, 2014

    I took a look at what has been implemented for Illustrator and – agreeing with the majority here – it seems to be a fine thing for experienced users. And could indeed be extended into the other applications.
    But, as already noted also by others, there’s beginning to be a gap now in the “getting started” zone for new users. The CC scheme – just all by itself – lowers the barrier to entry for such newcomers. However, the continuous (plus JDI) CC development scheme adopted by Adobe really leaves established third-party authors of tutorial materials with no practical option other than to build collections of quickie-tips-and-tricks video content clips.

  • Benjamin Hansen — 8:37 PM on January 22, 2014

    i love them and actually looked to see if ps had them also almost said something to you about it in fact.

  • Stephen Walker — 10:15 PM on January 22, 2014

    Great stuff and would definitely like to see similar in the other apps.
    Makes it very easy to check on the updates.

  • Jim — 12:27 AM on January 23, 2014

    I think it’s generally a good idea. I like that the videos are short enough to be an easy overview. Definitely keep them less than two minutes.

    The only complaint is that I wish the video was resizable/able to go full screen. Having it constrained to a little window where the example screen is barely readable isn’t as useful as it could be.

    Secondly, a question: if you select “don’t show again”, does that turn the dialogue box off permanently, or just until the next round of updates and new features? (The second sounds more useful.)

  • Lorenzo Colloreta — 11:04 AM on January 23, 2014

    Rufus is my friend, so YEP I love that! ;)

  • Hennell — 3:15 AM on January 24, 2014

    I like it – definitely worth adding to the other apps – although I’d like to see a text description as well!

    (In fact a more accessible list of all changes would be nice – often if you want to know what’s just changed, you have to hunt around the Adobe blogs to actively find the full list of bugs/’JDI’ style improvements. I don’t have a 3D printer, but I didn’t know you could click on the background padlock. If CC is designed to help encourage the small features, we need to hear about them)

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