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Adobe Illustrator CS3 shaping up to be most significant release in years

With the recent beta release of Adobe Photoshop CS3, all eyes have been on Adobe’s flagship application, but Think Secret sources recently disclosed inside details on the next upgrade to the company’s illustration software, Illustrator CS3. 

Information surrounding the next release of the software, code-named Jason, has been sparse since Think Secret first broke word on some of its major new features in March. Since that time, sources have gleaned more insight into those features, as well as others planned for the software’s release, currently on track for a Spring 2007 ship date.

Much as with Photoshop CS3, Adobe has poured considerable resources into improving Illustrator CS3’s performance. Rendering performance will be substantially improved as a result of major architectural changes, sources report, and Adobe plans to continue to push the performance improvements of the new architecture into its successor, Illustrator CS4. Owners of Intel-based Macs will also reap the additional performance benefits from Illustrator’s first release as a Universal Binary.

A new feature dubbed Live Color will greatly ease color selection and management, helping designers find appropriate matching colors for their work, improving experimentation with new colors, and managing colors collectively, instead of individually. In implementing Live Color, Adobe has revamped the software’s Color Guide and Swatches palettes, adding such improvements as saving a set of colors as a group or extracting all the colors from a specified artwork in one step.

The bulk of the enhancements will be found in the new Live Color dialog, which will sport a plethora of options, including the ability to easily color reduce artwork so that similar hues are mapped to tints or shades of a given color, as well as the ability to constrain color group selection to specific color palettes or spaces.

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Adobe, Illustrator, CS3

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