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Adobe Photoshop 6.0:
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Color-management has been upgraded, too. Color management is what makes your output (be it an inkjet print, a film transparency, or an image in a magazine like this one) match what you see on-screen. All of Photoshop 6.0's color-management tools appear in one dialog box for easy access, and there's detailed built-in help—when you drag the cursor over an item, an explanation of the current setting appears at the bottom of the dialog box. New ACE (Adobe Color Engine) technology (also used in Adobe Illustrator 9.0) provides standard and custom workflows, and built-in soft-proofing controls so you can accurately preview CMYK and RGB images on-screen or via your color printer.

As with all versions of Photoshop since 4.0, you can add digital watermarks to your photos, via the included Digimarc PictureMarc technology. Watermarks allow viewers to access complete contact information, and make it hard for others to appropriate your photos—the watermark remains with the image even when it is copied, or even when it is printed and scanned back into the computer.

A new context-sensitive options bar at the top of the Photoshop 6.0 screen provides quick and easy access to each tool's features.
Web Stuff
If you want to create your own Web pages, Photoshop 6.0 and ImageReady 3.0 give you the tools to do it well and easily. The two programs are well integrated, and provide everything you need to create a professional-looking (and functioning) Web page. Photoshop 5.5 came with ImageReady 2.0, so the new package provides upgrades of both programs. Retained are such niceties as the Jump To command in Photoshop's File menu that takes you right to ImageReady, and the Save for Web command, which displays the original image and one to four additional versions showing how different file formats and compressions will appear when called up on a Web page. The most notable new Web feature is that you now can slice images in Photoshop, instead of having to do it in ImageReady. (Slicing means dividing an image into individual, editable parts, so you can do what needs to be done to each part, and so that the image loads faster when a Web page is called up.) Photoshop will automatically define autoslices for portions of the image you don't slice, and generates an HTML table when you export the image.

Of course, ImageReady 3.0 provides a full range of Web tools, for photographers who want to put together their own Web pages.

Wrap-Up
This is serious software, a proven professional tool. If you've never used Photoshop, it will take you a while to master it (some of us are still working on that after years of putting it to effective use!). If you're a Photoshop veteran, you'll find the new changes and features intuitive and welcome.

A full install (including ImageReady) will take up close to 200 MB on your hard drive. Minimum requirements are a Power Macintosh with system 8.5 through 9.0 or a PC with Windows 98/Millennium/2000/NT 4.0, and 64MB of RAM and 125 MB of available disk space after installation. As always, the more RAM and hard-disk space you have, the better. Street price is professional, too—$609 ($199 for current Photoshop owners to upgrade). But for the serious digital photographer—whether you shoot film and have your images scanned, or shoot with a digital camera—Photoshop is the ultimate image-editing program. Photoshop 6.0's new features make it quicker and easier to learn and to use, and the program lets you do just about anything you'd want to an image, from straight photograph to composites and special effects to Web presentation. (Adobe also offers Photoshop LE, a much lower-priced version of the earlier Photoshop 5 that provides just about everything a serious photographer would need, but lacks Photoshop 6.0's improvements and Web and graphics-professional features.)

For more information, contact Adobe Systems Inc. at 800/492-3623 or visit the Website at www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/.

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