January 9, 2009

Finger on the Pulse: Color Analysis comes to Adobe Kuler

I've always said that one of the most exciting things about Adobe's online color community, Kuler, was that it was built as an RIA -- a Rich Internet Application. Sure, if you look at kuler as simply a way to generate a quick color theme here or there, it works great. But that doesn't tap into the power that the internet brings to the table.

A while back, Adobe update kuler to enable you to extract color themes from photographs. You could either upload your own, or you could extract inspiration from images from Flickr. That stuff was nice, but now, Adobe has started to add the "real stuff" -- a new feature called "Community Pulse" has now been added to kuler, in Beta form. If you log into kuler, you'll find Pulse between the Community and Links buttons along the left side of the screen.

So what is Community Pulse? It's a visual analysis tool that allows you to view color usage. You can almost think of it as Google Analytics for Color. Community Pulse can tell you what colors are popular, where they are popular, and when they are popular. It can also be used to compare color usage across the globe. For example, in the screenshot above, I've asked Community Pulse to display the differences in color usage between the USA and Japan. Specifically, I asked it to show me results of colors tagged with the word "hot", and from the looks of it, it's seems apparent that designers in the US consider blue to be hot.

As Community Pulse is in beta, there aren't as many options available to search on yet, but I'm hoping that eventually, we'll be able to search with our own custom tags and date ranges, etc. I'll be honest, when I first started playing with this cool feature, I was expecting to see a whole lot more green being used, what with the whole global environmental and "green" mindset thing, but that doesn't seem to be the case at all.

I wonder what other people will be able to extract from this incredibly helpful tool -- play around with Community Pulse yourself and let me know what your own data analysis reveals!

1 comment:

maeda said...

This is cool, adobe has great surprise department.
Althou, statistics can fool our mind as color can fool our eyes :)

How pulse determines what color is hot or not?