As an engineer, I don’t necessarily get to use Photoshop every day. I think it’s important for me to try to experience the program as a user as much as possible, and to try and honestly compare it to some of the other software I use from a user perspective as well. To that end, I do try and set up time to put Photoshop to use.
Because that time is not as much as I’d like, I also try to keep tabs on the Photoshop community, to see what buzz there is. If there’s something that people are discovering, I’ll try and use that same part of the program in some way – while I probably know some of the engineering details about a large part of the program, that may not always translate into being able to help people out.
To that end, the site I’m probably most frequently visiting these days is Photoshop News – it’s a nice, concise summary of top issues, with links off to other sites that I probably wouldn’t find on my own. I stick the RSS feed off in my Firefox (what browser did you think I would use? I’m a cross platform kind of guy…) bookmarks toolbar, so I just have to occasionally pull down the menu to see what new stories have made it up there. I also add Rob Galbraith DPI as an RSS feed (what did we ever do without RSS?). And then, of course, the User-to-User forums, when I have time. Unfortunately, that seems less and less these days, though I’m trying to get back there more often now.
I also try and get to a Photoshop user conference whenever I can. I encourage others on the team to do so as well. Nothing is quite so instructive as watching someone demo on a big screen and catching when the ‘oohs’ and ‘ahs’ come out. Or seeing where the glitches in the various demos occur (and writing them down for fixing). But while I wish that being at a Photoshop conference could be a daily activity, it isn’t…
I’m sure I’ve missed some interesting places for Photoshop news. Let me know about them – I probably don’t have time to add too many to my daily routine, but who knows?