During the development cycle for Photoshop 3.0, engineer Kevin Johnston came up with a clever Easter Egg called "Adobe Transient Witticisms™". The purpose was really an inside bit of engineering humor. Supposedly, the quotes and other phrases were uttered by engineers at moments of extreme pressure and relieved the tension of the moment. Kevin captured these phrases and included them in the final shipping version of 3.0. The Adobe Transient Witticisms™ have been a Photoshop tradition ever since. To access them, one must first be able to get to the "alt splash screen" which on the Mac is accomplished by holding down the option key while selecting "About Photoshop" in the Apple menu. In Windows, hold down the Control/Alt keys as you select "About Photoshop" from the Help menu. . As you see the rolling credits, you must wait till the very end and option click in the area above the credits but below the image. Then, you'll see all the Adobe Transient Witticisms™. Watch as they appear and youíll see some funny or weird messages appearing. . .the Adobe Transient Witticisms™. On these web pages I've included only a sampling of the Adobe Transient Witticisms from four versions of Photoshop for the reader's enjoyment. 

Jeff Schewe ­ Feb 2000

*Adobe Transient Witticisms are only available in products by Adobe Systems, Inc.

3.0 Adobe Transient Witticisms™

  • Photoshop: It's not just for breakfast anymore
  • This software was written to be played at the loudest possible volume. It has dials that go to eleven
  • Favorite bug report: "It blowed up good.  It blowed up REAL good."
  • Hey, everybody!  I'm not wearing pants!
  • Where's the kaboom?  There's supposed to be an earth-shattering kaboom!
  • Ensign-- pursue that vessel at Ludicrous Speed!
  • Strange women, lying in ponds, distributing swords
  • Please do not change colors while I am talking to you
  • Yow!  I've been eating wax paper!
  • I'm trying to think, but nothing happens!
  • "This filter is better than sex!  Not that I could actually tell" -- unknown engineer
  • It's less pink now
  • There is a poisoned doughnut, isn't there, Smithers?
  • I'm here to kick butt and chew bubblegum.  And I'm all out of bubblegum.
  • Now look what you've done!  You've made Sarak the Preparer cry!

From the Home Office in Zanesville, Ohio
Top Ten Signs the Engineering Team has been Working Too Hard:

10. Forced marches through Shoreline dump at 6AM daily for the entire QA staff
 9. Rapier wit comes across more like a nail-studded club
 8. Path worn in the carpet to the fridge full of Coke 
 7. Can't distinguish between good-natured ribbing and character assassination
 6. Have taken to calling the whitebox testers ìThe Goon Squadî
 5. Doug Olson on Wheels
 4. Two words: "Bass-O-Matic FUNNY!"  [Heh heh.  Heh heh.]
 3. Threats to take six weeks of vacation six weeks before the end of the quarter
 2. One too many jokes about "going postal"

And the number one sign that the Engineering team has been working too hard:
 1. Spittle on the monitors

Adobe Transient Witticisms





The Making of the Cover

©2000 Jeff Schewe