I've had similar issues, but not as bad as what you describe. For me, the cursor disappears periodically while working in Photoshop. I've never found a permanent solution, but I suspect it's how OSX manages many windows, such as when you pick up a new tool and then begin to operate in the image window.
My quick fix is to slide my cursor over the dock, and it ALWAYS reappears. I've done this so many times, it's become automatic now.
Apple says that issue is finally fixed in MacOS 10.9.
DrStrik9, Chris Cox,
I know the issue you're talking about, which is an Apple issue. Unfortunately this isn't it. This is very specific to Photoshop and the tools. So when I say cursor, I'm actually talking about the way the cursor is shown via my settings in PS Preferences .
I haven't changed anything in PS to make this happen. I'm going to restore the Preferences next, which is going to suck.
One big concern. Could it be indicative of the video card having problems?
I guess anything is possible, but I doubt it's your video card. A faulty mouse, mouse cable, keyboard, keyboard cable, tablet, tablet cable, etc. is more likely. If you have a different mouse handy, plug it in (before you reset your prefs), just to see if that fixes it.
Oh, and check all your USB connections too.
Gone through those already. Wacom tablet, Apple mouse, changed USB input, reboot etc.
Just restored Preferences and Tool Preferences. No change.
I also took a quick look at Illustrator and InDesign. While their tool sets are not as dynamic as Photoshops, InDesign did seem to be showing the rapid "jump" between the tool selected and the direct selection tool (the black arrow). It was harder to tell with Illustrator, but it did seem like the issue could be showing up there too (I don't use Illustrator or InDesign very much, so it's tougher to say if the cursor behavior is abnormal there).
As far as I can tell, the cursor is working normally in other apps, but the tool/cursor choices in other apps is nowhere near as extensive or complex as Photoshop. Wondering if there's an overall Adobe Preference that could be causing this?
One last thing to try:
Unplug ALL your USB connections except the keyboard and mouse. If the propblem persists, then it might be an issue on your computer's motherboard. If the problem is gone, then plug in one USB item in at a time, and see where the problem appears.