Adobe ImageReady CS2 running on XP
|Stable release||CS2 (9.0) / 2005|
|Operating system||Windows and Mac OS X|
|Type||Bitmap graphics editor|
Adobe ImageReady is a bitmap graphics editor that was shipped with Adobe Photoshop by Adobe Systems for almost ten years. ImageReady is written in the C++ programming language. It was available for both Windows and Mac OS X platforms from 1998 to 2007, after which it was discontinued.
ImageReady has fewer features than Photoshop, being designed for quick editing of web graphics rather than effects-intensive graphics editing for other applications. To that end, ImageReady has specialized features such as animated GIF creation, image compression optimization, image slicing and rollover effects, and HTML generation.
During the time the product was offered, the Photoshop Toolbox had a quick link to ImageReady. A Jump to ImageReady button enabled editing of the current image directly in ImageReady and a return button enabled a return to Photoshop.
The ImageReady toolbox is similar to that of Photoshop. One set of tools that does not resemble the Photoshop tools, however, is the Image Map set of tools, indicated by a shape or arrow with a hand that varied depending upon the release version. This toolbox has several features not found in Photoshop, including the following.
- Toggle Image Map Visibility and Toggle Slice Visibility tools — that toggle between showing and hiding image maps and slices, respectively
- Export Animation Frames as Files option — saves all or specified frames for an alternate use, e.g., to e-mail slides for review
- Preview Document tool — provides a preview of rollover effects in ImageReady rather than previewing them in a browser
- Preview in Default Browser tool — previews the image in a browser, including any rollover or animation effects
- Jump to Photoshop button — opens the current image in Photoshop
Adobe ImageReady 1.0 was released as a standalone application. ImageReady was packaged with Photoshop between version 2.0 and CS2. Adobe synchronized the version numbers of ImageReady and Photoshop beginning with version 7.0.
|Release||Version #||Release Date||Bundled with (version)|
|1st||v1.0||July 1998 ||(N/A) (Released as a stand alone product.)|
|2nd||v2||July 1999||Photoshop 5.5|
|3rd||v3||October 2000||Photoshop 6.0|
|4th||v7||February 2002||Photoshop 7.0|
|5th||v8 ("CS")||October 2003||Photoshop 8.0 CS|
|6th||v9 ("CS2")||May 2005||Photoshop 9.0 CS2|
With the release of the Creative Suite 3, ImageReady was officially discontinued. Many thought that the reason for this was that, since Adobe now owns Fireworks, they don't need ImageReady, and will continue to develop Fireworks instead. However, Adobe denies this and states that they decided to migrate ImageReady's features into Photoshop only by popular demand. There is some ImageReady-style functionality in CS3 and later versions found via File > Save For Web & Devices.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (August 2008)|
Early versions of Adobe ImageReady could generate only table-based code, without providing an option to generate table-less code using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) for positioning. Beginning with Adobe ImageReady 7, however, Adobe provided an option to generate CSS from sliced designs.
While Adobe has implied that Fireworks can replace the functionality of ImageReady, Fireworks can not work with the slices and multiple rollover states that were generated with ImageReady. Therefore, according to Adobe Technical Support, the only option now for any designer who has multiple projects to maintain that were created in ImageReady during the ten years the product was offered, is to downgrade to Photoshop CS2. There is no promise of a future solution for this issue.
Media related to Created with Adobe ImageReady at Wikimedia Commons