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Bernard Newnham
Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 1, 2013 at 11:17:43 am

...or Help system, but I'm not allowed to put that in the subject!

Now read on.....


I know it isn't quite on topic, but does anyone else think that Adobe's help system is complete rubbish - that's the stuff that appears when you click on Help on the menu at the top??

I find this all the time, but I'm just at this moment trying to work out why I can't hear the audio track in After Effects CS6. I get - as ever - a web page where I can type into two boxes, but neither takes me anywhere useful, and generally when I do this I get endless references to every other Adobe application but the one I'm trying to find out about. Is it done to encourage people to buy those expensive book called things like "The Missing Manual"?

...though I imagine it would be so much better if I got my head into the clouds.

Bernie


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Joseph W. Bourke
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 1, 2013 at 1:54:03 pm

I haven't had that problem, since there's always the option to actually download the manuals, which I always do. The default for the search online seems to be "search everywhere" - you can also narrow that down by choosing a search only relevant to the software you're looking for. I think it would be a much more useful system if it only started out with the narrow view, not the broad one, but it's pretty simple to narrow the choice.

Joe Bourke
Owner/Creative Director
Bourke Media
http://www.bourkemedia.com


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 2, 2013 at 10:53:32 am

They have manuals to download??

They have manuals to download!

How come this isn't flagged in the help menu or on the first web page? I've been cursing them for ever - every time I want to know something and press F1.

F!!!

Bernie


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Joseph W. Bourke
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 2, 2013 at 2:14:38 pm

Bernie -

I don't have my workstation open at the moment, but as I remember, there was always a "Download PDF" hyperlink at the top right hand of the page. I'll check that, and let you know for sure.

Joe Bourke
Owner/Creative Director
Bourke Media
http://www.bourkemedia.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 2, 2013 at 3:02:40 pm

It is on the first page. You mentioned CS6, so here's the help link:
http://helpx.adobe.com/after-effects/topics-cs6.html

Under "What's New?" there's a link called CS6 Help PDF (14 MB) [link].

I agree with you that the online help could use improvement. As Joe mentioned, after you do a search, you have the option to narrow it down. Choosing "This reference only" will show only the results from the product manual.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 2, 2013 at 3:06:31 pm

You can find the downloadable handbooks regularly, when you go to "help" of the menü-bar.
You are forwarded to an web-help site.
There you find "what´s new".
On the right side of this, you can find the downloadable handbooks.
(As I only have CS6 and no CashCow account I can only write for that...)

I find the Adobe help-system is absolutely horrible. You have to spend hours to understand how it works (if there is something understandable...).
You are always running in wrong directions (regarding to other Apps), have to scroll threw x mostly useless "community" help answers, or have to watch movies (what takes time) - even if you don´t know, if your question/problem is answered with that.
I nearby never found some help here. Most times I had an problem searching via google is much faster.
There are so great help systems (The best I know is Maxons C4D - you can click on every function and will be led to the corresponding page in the help system - really great and user friendly!), but that one of Adobe is nearby useless.

But Joseph is right: The handbooks are very helpful.


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 2, 2013 at 9:30:53 pm

There's a thing - a really obvious place!

I'm reminded of these words by Douglas Adams -

"But Mr Dent, the plans have been available in the local planning office for the last nine months."
"Oh yes, well as soon as I heard I went straight round to see them, yesterday afternoon. You hadn't exactly gone out of your way to call attention to them, had you? I mean, like actually telling anybody or anything."
"But the plans were on display ..."
"On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them."
"That's the display department."
"With a flashlight."
"Ah, well the lights had probably gone."
"So had the stairs."
"But look, you found the notice didn't you?"
"Yes," said Arthur, "yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying 'Beware of the Leopard'."

Bernie


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 3, 2013 at 12:43:06 am

OOh... Douglas Adams - I like him so much (only the good die young...)
A little sad, that my english is not good enough to read in original...


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Kevin Monahan
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 4, 2013 at 6:01:08 am

[Bernard Newnham] " I get - as ever - a web page where I can type into two boxes, but neither takes me anywhere useful, and generally when I do this I get endless references to every other Adobe application but the one I'm trying to find out about."

Sorry that you're having trouble, Bernard. See if this post on my blog is helpful for getting better search results in Help, "Better Searches for Community Help."

Thanks,
Kevin

Kevin Monahan
Social Support Lead
Adobe After Effects
Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe Systems, Inc.
Follow Me on Twitter!


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 4, 2013 at 8:13:48 am

A reply from someone at Adobe is very much appreciated - it's good (as ever) to know that the company is keeping an eye on the world, unlike some others. A suggestion therefore -

The reason I didn't find the manuals is because they are under a heading of "What's New", which they patently are not. I never looked there, so I didn't know they existed. Please move the link to top centre, perhaps under a heading "First, you could look here in the manual".
I don't have a use for the Adobe Community search box - I have Google for that. And if I'm looking for something about AE, I don't want to automatically get stuff about all the other applications. That just annoys. So the suggestion is - please re-arrange the help page to be more user friendly.

Thanks again
Yours not in the cloud

Bernard Newnham


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 4, 2013 at 10:17:21 am

I don´t want a help system, where I must use an help system to understand the help system.


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Joseph W. Bourke
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 4, 2013 at 3:42:14 pm

It's pretty clearly laid out. If you need a help system to understand that help system - you need help...

Joe Bourke
Owner/Creative Director
Bourke Media
http://www.bourkemedia.com


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 4, 2013 at 4:36:31 pm

I understood the intension of that help-system but in my eyes it´s not very useful.
I tried to search there several times, but it´s hard to find results...
You have not only the choice to search among the Apps.
You can also chose to serach "Community" or "Adobe" Help.
Can also search through different languages.
What ever I took as an option - 2 cklicks later I was in the wrong place.
(As the links of the results could refer to sites which are not within the limitations).
Other thing is, that the Apps are not "one world" - So (for example) the layer functionality is different in all the Apps.
In the one App, you can group them as Folders, in the next you can´t group them anyway, the next you have to put them hierarchic.
Same with Path-Handles and many other details, like color-pickers etc.
Also confusing.


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Kevin Monahan
Re: Adobe system for aiding your understanding of their products
on Jul 8, 2013 at 11:46:58 pm

I don't want to automatically get stuff about all the other applications. That just annoys.

I hope that is still not occurring. Yes, the stock search returns community results along with Help documentation, however, you should not see results from "Flash", say, when searching Premiere Pro docs.

My tests show that all searches based on Premiere Pro return only results from Premiere Pro. Click "This reference only" will return searches based on Premiere Pro documentation only and no community content.

You have not only the choice to search among the Apps.

Not really, if you are searching from Premiere Pro help, you are doing a search based only on Premiere Pro. This has improved a lot lately. Try it again for yourself.

You can also chose to serach "Community" or "Adobe" Help.

The default search is based on community contributions. Click a single button to get Adobe Help only.

The reason I didn't find the manuals is because they are under a heading of "What's New", which they patently are not. I never looked there, so I didn't know they existed.

Did you try Help under the Help menu? That's the fastest way I know how to get to help.

I don't have a use for the Adobe Community search box - I have Google for that.

The search you get, we feel, is better than a Google search because we have a custom search engine which returns much better results.

Feel free to make any suggestions. Not on this thread, but here: http://www.adobe.com/go/wish

Kevin

Kevin Monahan
Social Support Lead
Adobe After Effects
Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe Systems, Inc.
Follow Me on Twitter!


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