Frequently users ask a question regarding a feature they need, but can not find. Why do we not as a whole recognize that:

  1. Adding more feature is a tradeof between, ease of use. A software on the whole does not become better with more features. But in fact a software should have less more generally usable features (this is hard to do).

    This is reinforced by the sheer volume of questions assuming the feature they seek does not exist, but infact does.

  2. A feature misimplemented can be less than useful, and degrade all users experience.

    The best example of this that you would generally know is Illustrators perspective grid tool. It is an amazing feat in fact, i can see how it perfectly manages to tick all the customer request points and yet be totally useless. Worse it sits on the toolbox and unlike all other tools in the toolbox manages to permanently alter your settings when you click it. Causing any misclick to move you into a different mode that can not be turned of from toolbar, confusing new users to no end. That on the whole tge tool still manages to be worse than drawing perspectives manually.

  3. Inorder for you to have a good tool you need to think how the feature affects the whole. This is hard, in fact if you have never released software you can not understand how even the simplest of features can confuse large fractions of your userbase.

  • 2
    I agree with all of this (the perspective tool is such a good example - I hate the way it's implemented), but I fail to understand what kind of answers you expect here. Are we talking about features on Stack Exchange or features in for example Adobe software? Are you looking for a standardized way to handle users who gets angry at the software instead of accepting the way it is?
    – Wolff
    Oct 12, 2019 at 14:22
  • @Wolff Its not a question its an explanation this is discussion
    – joojaa
    Oct 12, 2019 at 14:28
  • 1
    I understand that, I was just unsure if you were talking specifically about features on this site. I thought meta was for discussions about this site. But I see now that you probably mean features in software in general.
    – Wolff
    Oct 12, 2019 at 15:17
  • @Wolff its a discussion for people on the site to move off the commentt sections
    – joojaa
    Oct 12, 2019 at 18:14
  • The traditional way for such discussions would be a chat, if I'm not mistaken? I was also quite unsure what features - site vs. applications - you were referring to. Oct 22, 2019 at 15:59
  • @MichaelSchumacher lol, if we can have a ask questions session in meta we can have anything in meta. But in both sites and applications
    – joojaa
    Oct 22, 2019 at 16:25
  • 2
    @joojaa I honestly don't know how to parse your last comment - what is the goal of this question and what kind of discussion are you aiming for? Oct 23, 2019 at 20:28

2 Answers 2


Making these assumptions based on questions on a Q&A site adds some confirmation bias, of course - the people who had no issue with finding what they are looking for or using it are less likely to show up here.


I believe much of what Adobe actually implements in AI all comes down to cost.

Surely there are users, or even developers, that see the pain points and make them known. But ultimately I think what is or is not developed, refined, and/or implemented is all reduced to cost vs sales equation somewhere. The accounting department dictates just how much dev time can be assigned. Then it's up to team leaders to sort out what can and can't be done for that cost.

Adobe adds stupid stuff at times all in a quest for more $$$.

  • Example, the Bounding Box. It was aded specifically to make CorelDraw users more comfortable in Illustrator. And it has absolutely no unique feature within Illustrator. It's an application feature that is nothing more than overhead.

Sometimes it seems overhead to the application is added to combat anyone actually having to learn a feature set as opposed to merely throwing everything directly in front of a user.

  • Example, the Free Transform Tool and it's pop up tool bar. None of those "tools" are "new". All those transformations have been possible with the Free Transform tool since the 1980s. But many users, not having actually explored the Free Transform Tool features, were unaware that those transformations could be performed. So, Adobe added overhead in the form of a pop up tool bar needlessly to placate the ignorant sector. And then they sell it as a "new feature".

And then there are times where I believe the dev teams know they need to improve things, but due to cost limitations they are not allowed to. New bells and whistles tend to garner more new customers (subscribers) far, far, more than improvements to existing, sometimes little used, features.

  • Example, Live Color. Such a powerful feature but has so many limitations in how it's implemented that you can easily hit a "wall" and have to step back, start over, and rethink a direction. I believe Devs know all this. They simply aren't allowed to devote time to correct it.

All of this, I feel, leads to an application that quickly become "bloatware" and actually less usable.

I, personally, have never liked any "CC" version of Illustrator. They all see far to "muddled" while working. I can't specifically state any direct mechanics that are problematic for me. It's all more of a "feel" to the application.

I much prefer CS6 to this day. Even though CC does have some feature sets that I can see as useful to production. CS6 "feels" snappy, responsive, and "awake" - for lack of a better term. CC versions "feel" like they are in a daze, everything feels like it's more concerned with being "smooth" in it's mouse movements than it is in being accurate. I feel as though I'm working in 2 feet of water when I use any CC version. None the less I do use CC at times for a couple features unavailable in CS6. However, since CS6 I have not been in a hurry or felt compelled to move my work to CC. There's little need 99.9% of the time for me.

And, admittedly, the entire "subscription" model where I'm locked out of any of my copyrighted work if it's saved in a CC format unless I pay Adobe really irks me. I can't have my artwork being help hostage as a "business model".

Unfortunately, due to the age of CS6 and how fast turnaround is in the industry, many users only know CC versions and that's all they'll ever know. And you simply can't know how much better something can be if you've only ever been exposed to one flavor. It is never surprising to me if younger designers merely assume "that's how things are". They've been told to accept what they are given... and they don't know how much better something could be.

  • +1, I couldn't agree more. I'm dreaming of graphical applications which are developed with a constant desire to minimize everything until you are left with the smallest number of tools necessary. I don't need a tomato dicer, a parsley chopper, an egg divider and a bread cutter. I just want a good sharp knife and a cutting board! But as you said: it's a consequence of capitalism and maybe also democracy - everybody has the right to be a designer/author/musician/chef/whatever.
    – Wolff
    Nov 6, 2019 at 22:15

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