True to its name, Adobe Illustrator began life as a standard-bearer for vector-based illustration and design, but fell behind the times because it lacked the Web output of competitors. Eager to shed Illustrator’s stodgy image as a print-only application, Adobe has since taught this old dog many new tricks.
One instantly noticeable change is the panel-based interface, a change from the familiar palettes of old. The panels can be minimized to simple icon docks. Clicking on an icon opens up the palette it refers to, while hitting the arrow at the top opens all the palettes. No more worries about palettes blocking your workspace.
Colors get a lot of attention in CS3. They can now be grouped as you want them, and you can have CS3 suggest similar or related colors to you.