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M A G A Z I N E 54 June | July 2013

What’s New With InDesign CC PEPCON Recap The 10 Most Ridiculous Features

Story Editor: One of InDesign’s Hidden Gems


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MAGAZINE

From the Editor in Chief Publishers David Blatner, Anne-Marie Concepción Editorial Editor in Chief Mike Rankin, mike@indesignmag.com Senior Editor Sandee Cohen, sandee@indesignmag.com Contributing Writers Steve Werner, Steve Caplin, Nigel French, Jeff Gamet Design Steve Strauss Rufus Deuchler rufus.deuchler.net Production Matt Mayerchak www.mayerchak.com Business Contact Information www.indesignmag.com/contact.php Subscription Information www.indesignmag.com/purchase.php Published by InDesignSecrets.com, a division of Publishing Secrets, Inc. Copyright 2013 InDesignSecrets.com. All rights reserved. Reproduction and redistribution prohibited without approval. For more information, contact permissions@indesignmag.com. InDesign Magazine is not endorsed or sponsored by Adobe Systems Incorporated, publisher of InDesign. InDesign is a registered trademark of Adobe Systems Incorporated. All other products and services are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby acknowledged.

Greetings and welcome to issue 54 of InDesign Magazine! In our main feature Steve Werner explores one of the most valuable yet often overlooked tools in InDesign, the Story Editor. If you’re not already a fan of the Story Editor, you will be after reading the article. Up next, we have a piece on GREP styles, another feature whose amazing power more than makes up for its lack of a sexy graphical interface. As Steve Caplin’s InStep shows, the time you can save make it well worth the effort to get to know GREP. We also have a brand new version of InDesign to celebrate and explore! InDesign CC recently made its debut for subscribers to Adobe’s Creative Cloud, so I took the First Look article I wrote for CreativePro.com and expanded it here with additional material on the Creative Cloud controversy, and samples of the kinds of QR codes you can make with InDesign CC.

In the new InType, Nigel French finishes his fantastic list of ways to be a better designer. I also chipped in with a recap of PEPCON 2013, the InDesign event of the year, where 400 geeks convened in Austin, Texas for four days of learning, connecting, and fun. And I was inspired by a posting at InDesignSecrets to compile a list of the 10 Most Ridiculous Features in InDesign. I hope you have as much fun reading it as I did writing it. And be sure to check out the original post at InDesignSecrets to vote for your own most ridiculous features. For our InReview, Keith Gilbert examines in5, a plug-in that lets you export HTML from InDesign, and preserve much of the look of your layout, while adding interactive features. And as always, Sandee Cohen and Jeff Gamet are here to answer to your questions and show you all the coolest new stuff. Enjoy!

Photos on pages 1, 7, 34, 55, 61, and 84 courtesy of Fotolia.com

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InSide: Table of Contents 7

A Hidden Gem: 10 Reasons to Love the Story Editor Steve Werner shows why the Story Editor is one of InDesign’s most valuable and underrated features.

19 InStep: GREP Styles Steve Caplin demonstrates how to harness the magical power of GREP styles.

78 InBrief: New & Improved Products Jeff Gamet keeps you up to date on products that are new, improved, and interesting to InDesign users. 82 InDex to All Past Issues Download the InDex and discover what’s in all 53 past issues of this magazine.

31 What’s New With InDesign CC Read all about the latest and greatest version of InDesign. 39 I nType: How to Be a Better Designer, Part 2 Nigel French concludes his epic list of ideas for how to maximize your potential as a designer. 56 PEPCON 2013 Greetings from Austin, Texas, site of the InDesign event of the year! 61 The 10 Most Ridiculous InDesign Features A light-hearted look at the silliest features in InDesign. 66 InQuestion Sandee Cohen solves your InDesign problems. 70 InReview: in5 Keith Gilbert looks at Ajar Production’s tool for exporting InDesign layouts as HTML.

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PEPCON 2013 was a big hit thanks in part to events like Ignite InDesign!, where attendees like Khara Plicanic (pictured above) put on a great show of their own.

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® ® Adobe® InDesign® and Adobe InCopy WORLDWIDE INDESIGN USER GROUP COMMUNITY

Ten Steps for Building Your InDesign and InCopy Expertise 1. Learn about what’s new with the InDesign Family of products at www.adobe.com/go/indesignfamily

InDesign User Group. Join a chapter near you!

2. Keep up-to-date on the latest InDesign and InCopy news at InDesignSecrets.com, an independent website with expert podcasts, blogs, techniques, and more. 3. Sign up for a free InDesign tip of the week at www.indesignmag.com. 4. Check out Total Training for Adobe InDesign at www.totaltraining.com. 5. Attend a free Creative Suite eSeminar and learn what’s new in InDesign at www.adobe.com/events. 6. Skip over to lynda.com to try their InDesign and InCopy online training. 7. Tune into Adobe TV, your online video source featuring innovative techniques and tips for getting the most out of Adobe InDesign and InCopy at www.adobe.com/ go/adobetv. 8. Visit leading InDesign, Digital Publishing and Creative Professional social media channels such as the InDesign Facebook page, Adobe Digital Publishing blog and Creative Suite Design Facebook page. 9. Locate Adobe Certified Instructors and Adobe Authorized Training Centers in your area at partners. adobe.com. 10. Go where the leading InDesign and InCopy industry experts gather. Check out upcoming InDesign and Creative Suite conferences at indesignsecretslive.com and www.mogo-media.com.

Visit our website for meeting information, training resources, member discounts and more. w w w.indesignusergroup.com

© 2010 Adobe Systems Incorporated. All rights reserved. Adobe, the Adobe logo, InDesign and InCopy are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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here’s a feature hidden inside InDesign—an old PageMaker feature that was so good that it literally stopped people from switching to QuarkXPress back in the day, because Quark didn’t offer it. It’s a feature that can mean the difference between staying late at the office or skipping out at five for a relaxed evening at home. Many InDesign features are flamboyant—hard to miss and easy to understand. But others are hidden gems, unknown or poorly understood, such as this crucial, under-used feature, called the Story Editor. I know from my experience teaching hundreds of InDesign users that only a handful of them even know about the Story Editor. But it’s one of my favorite InDesign features, and here are ten reasons why it should be one of yours, too. INDESIGN MAGAZINE  54

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

I think of the Story Editor as InDesign’s X-Ray tool for text. It allows you to easily get to things not otherwise easily accessible, such as anchored objects and hyperlinks, and is is also good for getting to and getting rid of gunk. —Diane Burns

Story Editor is a humble giant; I pushed Quark to implement it for years, and it was one of the reasons I eventually switched to InDesign. —David Blatner

Story Editor is the best-kept secret of InDesign, though it dates back to PageMaker. Use it! —Keith Gilbert

There’s no better detective than Story Editor when you’re trying to solve a case of “where did I anchor that object, and how do I move it somewhere else?” —Michael Murphy

I’ve been known to use the Story Editor as a litmus test for potential hires. I don’t care if you’re an ACE, tell me what do you like to use the Story Editor for? Heh . . . If I get a blank stare or a knitted brow, that’s not so good. But if they say “oh, mostly I use it to edit oversets,” or “easiest way to see footnotes,” bingo, they’re hired! —Anne-Marie Concepción

My life is too complicated as it is. The Story Editor brings me back to a simpler time. —Sandee Cohen

I use Story Editor in conjunction with Track Changes as a sort of “poor man’s InCopy” on the rare occasions when I collaborate with someone on a project. Don’t laugh—it works quite nicely! —Claudia McCue

It’s lean and it’s mean. No page turns, no zooming, no lengthy screen redraws. It’s a great place to get familiar with your text content—and to quickly apply paragraph and character styling. —Nigel French

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

What the Story Editor Is

Setting Up Your Story Editor

Everyone knows that an InDesign “story” is composed of text in one or more linked text frames. Usually we work in InDesign stories using the layout view, where we can see a story onscreen as it will appear in the final document—with proper line breaks and displaying styles and formatting. In the layout view, you also see the story in the context of any other stories on the page, sidebars, graphics, and so on. But sometimes, that other stuff just gets in your way. Sometimes you just want to focus on writing or editing the story—and that’s what the Story Editor is good for. It’s a separate view of the story, contained in its own window, like a built-in word processor or text editor. All you have to do is select or click in a text frame, and then choose Edit > Edit in Story Editor (or, better, press Command+Y/Ctrl+Y to toggle the Story Editor window open or closed). Changes you make to text in the Story Editor are reflected in the layout view and

The biggest problem with Story Editor is that, by default, it displays your text using 12-point Letter Gothic Std—a bland (you might even say painful to read) monospaced font. Fortunately, you can make your editing easier by choosing a font and size that you like in the Story Editor Display pane of the Preferences dialog box. Pick something easy on your eye, such as Minion Pro, Georgia, or Cambria, and increase the point size to 14 or 16 points. You can also change the line spacing if you like, or pick a different background color. I like the Canary Yellow background color, similar to the background I use when reading books on an iPad.

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You can even choose an entirely different theme. Ink on Paper is the default, but you can also choose from Amber Monochrome, Classic System, or the old favorite Terminal for a 1970s look. Cursor Options lets you change the shape of the cursor in the Story Editor window. The Barbell, Thick, or Block shapes are far easier to see than the anemic Standard cursor. (I wish we could get Barbell in the regular layout view!) Remember: You can set this up any way you want, because changes in the appearance of text in the Story Editor do not affect the appearance of text on your actual document pages.

Set your Story Editor display preferences however whimsically you’d like; no one else needs to see them.

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

vice versa. The two windows are just two views of the same story. In fact, if you select text or place a cursor in one window, and then press Command+Y/Ctrl+Y, that same selection or cursor position displays in the other window, updating your view. The Story Editor window shows you only the minimal amount of formatting—indications of bold, italic, or small caps, and certain markers which are described below. It won’t show you where each line of text breaks in the layout view. When you have the Story Editor window open, both windows (the story editor and the main document window) are listed at the bottom of the Window menu. The Story Editor title bar shows “[filename]:[beginning of text],” and the Story Editor window is listed this way in the Window menu as well. One tricky thing about the story editor windows: Sometimes you don’t realize that you’ve left them open behind other document windows. If you’ve been editing five different stories in your document, you might end up

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with five Story Editor windows open in the background. So check your Window menu from time to time, so you can clean up windows you don’t need open anymore.

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Editing Hard-toRead Text

you can view which paragraph styles have been applied to the text; the style names show up along the left side of the Story Editor window. You can change the width of the paragraph style section by dragging the double line that separates the styles from the text. And it’s easy to change the paragraph style if you need to: Just click in a paragraph and select a paragraph style in the Paragraph Styles panel, or use the Quick Apply feature, as shown in Figure 1.

Let’s look at the most common times when you should be thinking, “This is a job for the Story Editor:” »» The story runs from page to page with multiple frames »» The type is small and hard to read »» The type is rotated or upside-down In all these cases, it’s hard to get a “bird’s eye view” of the text, to read and edit it quickly in the layout view—but the Story Editor makes it easy! Not only can you edit the Figure 1: The context-sensitive Quick Apply command text in the Story Editor, but

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

Of course, if you want an even more pared-down editor, you can choose View > Story Editor > Hide Style Name Column, which hides both those style names and the depth ruler (which I describe later). I like to keep it visible, though, because the style name column shows something else, too: If you have applied automatic numbering to paragraphs, the number applied to each paragraph appears in that paragraph styles section. (You can see this, along with other markings, later in this article, in Figure 5.) It has to show it there, rather than in the text column, because the numbers are not actually part of the text (unless you have converted the numbering to text). By default, the only way to tell where one paragraph ends and another begins in the Story Editor is to look for those paragraph style names. Or, if you enable Type > Show Hidden Characters, you’ll see little paragraph symbols appear at the end of each paragraph. But if that’s not enough of an

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indication, you can choose View > Story Editor > Show Paragraph Break Marks to show an indent symbol at the beginning of a new paragraph, making it really obvious where the beginning of each paragraphs is.

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Overset, and Other Things You Can’t See in the Layout

the bottom of the last text frame. People use all kinds of crazy workarounds for seeing or editing the overset text, such as making the frame bigger or threading the rest of the story to another frame, perhaps on the pasteboard. Don’t! Instead, open the Story Editor! Here, the overset text is visible, editable, and helpfully marked with a red line (see Figure 2). If your workflow allows it, you can then easily edit the text to make it fit within the available space using the Story Editor.

One of the most important times to use the Story Editor is when you simply cannot see something on the document page itself. For example, here’s a common problem when laying out text: You have to place a story that doesn’t fit in the space allocated, and the text becomes overset—indicated Figure 2: Handling overset text in Story Editor is really so much more convenient than in layout. by a red plus sign at

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

In addition to revealing oversets, here are three more instances where the Story Editor can help you by exposing elusive text: »» Sometimes, when you click Find First or Find Next in the Find Font dialog box, InDesign will select the text on the page, but you won’t be able to see it. This often happens when InDesign has selected only one or two small characters. To find them quickly, close the Find Font dialog box and immediately open the Story Editor window by pressing Command/Ctrl+Y. Look for the text that is selected here! »» If you place or paste text, and some of it suddenly disappears from the frame, there may be something causing the text to hide—for example, a break character or Keep Options rules. It’s a pain to deal with this on the document page; it’s far easier to see the text and work with it in the Story Editor, where you can see all the text in the story. »» When you create multi-state objects with the Object States panel, the layout view

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can display only one object state at a time. However, if you use Edit > Spelling > Check Spelling, the feature checks all the object states. If it indicates a misspelling, but you can’t see it, it may be in a multi-state object that is not currently visible. If you open the Story Editor, you can see the text in context, and then decide whether or not it needs to be fixed.

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Figure 3: See all the contents of your table cells.

Working With Tables

Tables are a little tricky in the Story Editor, because each cell appears as its own paragraph, one row or column at a time. Fortunately, tables can be collapsed or expanded in the Story Editor (see Figure 3). When collapsed, the table appears as a table icon, similar to an anchored object in

the story. Clicking the triangle next to the icon expands the table. If you right-click on the table icon, you can choose between Arrange by Rows (the default) and Arrange by Columns. In Arrange by Rows mode, dashed lines separate columns within a row, and row numbers (for example, Row 2) indicate a new row. In Arrange By Columns mode, dashed lines separate rows within a column. When you have overset text inside a table cell, however, the Story Editor is invaluable! Within the layout view, things like overset

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

Drag-and-Drop Text Editing Need to move some text from one place to another in a story? Sometimes the easiest way to do that is to drag and drop it. However, by default, drag and drop is enabled only in the Story Editor window and turned off in layout view. You can change this in the Type pane of the Preferences dialog box. To drag and drop text characters, highlight the character(s) you want move, and pause your cursor over the selection until you see the little T icon. Drag the selection to its new location, and then release the mouse when the vertical bar cursor is in the right position. Modifier keys can affect the move: Hold down the Option/Alt key to copy text. Use the Shift key before you drop the text to force the selection to match the formatting of the destination text. And here’s the coolest one: If you hold down the Command/Ctrl key and drag the text out of the Story Editor window and onto your document page, you make a new text frame! Combinations of these modifiers also work the way you would expect.

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text or graphics in a table simply show up as a small red circle. This indicator may appear when you paste a graphic or too much text into a table cell, or when a cell inset keeps the graphic or text from fitting. While there’s no way to see or edit the overset text on your Figure 4: The Depth Ruler in the Story Editor window shows you the document page (besides changing distance from the top of the first frame. But when paragraphs split the cell height or width), in the into two or more columns, the measurement may not be exactly what you expect. Story Editor you can easily edit the contents. Here’s another benefit of using in the current ruler units, and the depth tables in a Story Editor window: You can ruler continues when text flows between easily move a graphic anchored in one columns or between frames (Figure 4). The cell to another cell by dragging the inline measurement you see reflects the position graphic icon in the Story Editor. of the last word on line of text in the Story Editor window. Note that this is literally the length, or distance, from the top of Seeing How Long the frame to the baseline of that word. It’s mostly used for magazine and newspaper a Story Is By default, the Story Editor displays a stories, which are often counted by depth. depth ruler in the Style Name column on For example, an editor might ask for “three the left. It shows the length of the story more inches of copy.”

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

However, watch out: This feature may deceive you if the story uses the Split paragraph formatting feature. The depth count continues even though the width of the columns varies as they are spanned or split. If you never use the depth ruler measurements, you can turn them off by choosing View > Story Editor > Hide Depth Ruler. Or simply right-click on the depth ruler and use the contextual menu to turn it off.

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Working With Footnotes

When your document has a lot of footnotes, you definitely want to check out the Story Editor view. The reason: Instead of constantly having to switch your focus between the footnote reference in the text and the footnote itself at the bottom of the page, you can see it all in one place. The Story Editor displays footnotes inline, immediately after their reference (see the blue markers in Figure 5). TIP: Click the blue

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5 Figure 5: This text contains several kinds of markers: (1) The publication date is a text variable. (2) “BITMAPPED GRAPHICS” is a cross-reference destination. (3) Two lines down there is a footnote, shown inline. (4) A hyperlink to the web leads to the InDesign Secrets website. (5) The gold marker is a note.

footnote markers that appear like bookends around the footnote text to toggle the footnote open or closed. You can also choose View > Story Editor > Expand All

Footnotes or Collapse All Footnotes. If you look closely, you can see the footnote number in the first blue block at the beginning of the footnote marker.

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor Having Trouble Changing the Font Color?

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Handling Notes

Notes are a feature borrowed from InCopy, and they are a handy way to pass on information to other people in an editorial workflow. In the layout view, they appear as a subtly-colored hourglass icon. If you’re not zoomed in on the text, they’re easy to miss. Worse, to read or edit them while in the layout view, you must open the Notes panel. However, notes are far more obvious in the Story Editor. Their markers appear as colored bookends on either side of the note text. As with footnotes, you can click on a bookend to expand or collapse the note. The color of the note marker is defined in the User dialog box (File > User). Also, if you ever want to use Find/Change or Spell Check commands on the contents of notes, you have to use the Story Editor. Neither command will work with notes in the layout view.

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Managing Other Kinds of Markers

Do you ever get frustrated trying to see the text color when you’re changing color in text or a table? In layout view, you can see only the inverse of the Swatches panel color you’re trying to apply—until you deselect the text. Then you’ve got to reselect the text and try another color, and so on.

You may not realize that InDesign uses hidden text characters to accomplish a variety of features. For example, footnotes and notes are all hidden text that doesn’t appear on the document page, or appears in a difInstead, use the Story Editor. Click in the ferent place. That’s why we can see them in text, open the Story Editor, and select Story Editor! There are plenty of other feathe text whose color you want to change. Choose a new fill color in the Swatches tures that work the same way, such as: panel. After a second or two, you’ll see Text Variables. When you insert a text the result in the layout view. Note that variable in a story in layout view (on the this is less a concern in InDesign CC document page), you may notice a very because it handles text highlighting betdifficult-to-see box surrounding it. If you’re ter (it uses the OS highlight color rather than always inverting the text). searching your text for a variable, you’re likely to miss it. However, in the Story Editor, the text variable marker is blue on the left, shows the name of the text variable on a gray background, and displays the text created on the right. Try as many color combos as you want, and see them in almost real time, without ever having to deselect. For example, in Figure 5,

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

the marker shows the text variable with the name “Publication Date.” Hyperlinks. In layout view, hyperlinks can be surrounded by either an invisible or visible rectangle. Of course, you could apply a character style that makes the link more obvious. But in the Story Editor, hyperlinks are bookended by thick blue and gray arrows so you can identify them quickly. (By the way, this is helpful when using Data Merge, too, because the data merge variables use the same kind of marker in the Story Editor.) Other Markers. Many other features in InDesign also appear in the Story Editor with unique icons. These include XML Tags, Anchored or Inline Frames, Index Markers, Text Anchors, Cross-Reference Sources, Cross-Reference Destinations, and Conditional Text (see next page). Page Number Markers and Section Number Markers (found in the Type > Insert Special Character > Marker menu) appear as an in the Story Editor.

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Figure 6: Move anchored objects easily in Story Editor.

Rather than trying to show them all here, I recommend you download the InDesignSecrets Guide to Special Characters in Adobe InDesign. This PDF file contains very legible displays of each marker as they appear both in the layout view and the Story Editor. The fact that you can see these kind of characters in the Story Editor means you can move them from place to place, often far more easily than you can on the document page. For example, if you need to

move a text anchor or an anchored/inline object, it’s a hassle on the document page. In the Story Editor window, you just need to drag across the icon to select it, and then drag it to a new location. Figure 6 shows a good example of this, where two frames—one a graphic and the other a caption—both need to be anchored to the same location to be included in the text flow of the EPUB. The easiest way to do this is in the Story Editor window.

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

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Tracking Changes

Track Changes is another feature borrowed from InCopy, and it’s an awesome way to track who edited a story, and what they changed. But here’s the catch: You can only see what has been added or deleted in the Story Editor! You can turn on Track Changes by choosing Type > Track Changes > Enable Track Changes in This Story or in All Stories. (Or use the Track Changes panel, which you can find in the Window > Editorial submenu.) Once enabled, InDesign will track any text you add, delete, or move (Figure 7).

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Figure 7: Customize the Track Changes color for your optimal reading experience. As with notes, the color of the markup in the Track Changes feature is defined by the reviewer’s choice in File > User.

Creating Conditional Text

Conditional text is text that appears when a certain condition is met, and doesn’t appear when that condition is not met. You might use this workflow when you need to have different versions of a document—perhaps for different regions, or different languages. You can create, apply, and manage conditions with the Conditional Text panel. In Figure 8 there are three language versions of an article. To output one version of the article (in this case, French) the other two, Spanish and UK English, are hidden. In layout view, a wavy colored underline indicates the version shown. The hidden conditions are indicated by a colored caret symbol at the baseline.

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Figure 8: French text is currently visible in layout, but you can still see the other alternatives for comparison.

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Feature: A Hidden Gem: Ten Reasons to Love the Story Editor

In the Story Editor, the wavy colored line also appears. But even better, you see a grayed-out eye icon wherever there is hidden conditional text. If you pause your cursor over one of the eyes, you can see the hidden text of a condition, making it easier to compare with the version currently visible. By the way, conditions usually apply just to text, but you can apply conditions to anchored or inline graphics or tables, too. How? All you need to do is first select their icons inside our friend the Story Editor!

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When you’re working in layout view, the tags are thin colored brackets that are not easy to see. It’s far too easy to accidentally delete a bracket and mess up your tagging. You should do tagging in the Story Editor, where the much bigger bookends even include the name of the tag.

Conclusion Think of the Story Editor as kind of a faithful assistant in your editing work. You can’t do all your editing in it, because you can’t see how lines will break in the final layout, and you can’t see all the formatting applied to text. But when you get stuck in any of the ways described above, the Story Editor is at your service at the call of a keystroke.

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Editing XML Tagged Text

In an XML workflow, tags must be applied to the paragraphs to indicate where they (the paragraphs) fit into the structure of the document. In the example shown in Figure 9, a pet catalog has tags created for the pet, the pet name, and the pet description.

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Figure 9: A pet catalog in Story Editor, properly tagged with XML markup.

Steve Werner is a trainer, consultant, and author. He teaches locally in companies and classrooms in the San Francisco Bay Area. His latest venture is CS Magic, a training company that helps you “Master the Magic of the Adobe Creative Suite.” Sign up for an online webinar at www.cs-magic.com.

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By Steve Caplin

GREP it. GREP it good!

Harness the power of GREP styles to apply automated styling in your work, and you’ll wonder how you ever got along without them.

GREP was invented in 1973 by the programmer Ken Thompson, for use with his text editor for the Unix platform. He used it to search for global uses of a regular expression, and then to print the results—​hence the G|RE|P acronym. Some sources attribute the acronym to “general regular expression parser.”

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InDesign’s Paragraph Styles feature is the perfect tool for styling text, and the Nested Styles pane inside the Edit Paragraph Styles dialog box makes it easy to apply different character styles to specific locations inside a paragraph. But Nested Styles are limited in their ability to format text because they only look for sequential patterns of text. For example, a nested style can apply a character style to “the first five words,” or “up to and including the first punctuation,” or “up to a tab.” Nested styles fall flat when you want to apply formatting to characters that may appear anywhere in the paragraph.

Fortunately, InDesign provides a terrific alternative, called GREP Styles, which offers a far more powerful environment in which to style precise and definable patterns of characters. And yet despite their power, GREP styles represent one of the most underused features of InDesign. This is, to a large extent, because GREP is so impenetrable at first glance. (Read: it scares people off!) In this article I’m going to step you through the process of making a GREP style, and I think that you’ll see it’s not nearly as painful as you might expect, and that most of you will find it worth the ride.

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InStep: GREP Styles

1. The challenge

2. Start Grepping

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Below you’ll see the text we’re going to use. We want to make every instance of the key words image, text, and design be bold. In addition, let’s make this more visually interesting by changing those small bullets to much larger ones and setting all the superscript numbers in red. It should be straightforward enough, but as we’ll see, there are potential pitfalls along the way.

First, we need to define and apply a Paragraph Style for the text, assuming it doesn’t already have one. Then, in the Paragraph Style Options dialog box, click on GREP Style on the left, and then click the New GREP Style button at the bottom. The first word we want in bold is the word images, so click in the To Text field and type the word in here. So far, we’ll see no changes; we haven’t told it what style to apply yet.

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InStep: GREP Styles

3. Define a Character Style

4. The result so far

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In the Apply Style box, a drop-down menu shows all the Character Styles currently in the document. There’s no need to create one in advance, though, since we can do it on the fly. Choose New Character Style from the list, and the Character Style dialog box will open. Now, in this instance we’re using Source Sans Pro as our text font, but that might change—​and we don’t want to have to redefine the GREP style if that happens. So rather than choosing a specific font, we just choose Bold as the weight. This will apply the bold version of whichever font is currently in use. Here’s how the text looks now. In response to our directive, the word images is duly bolded. But, further down the text, the word image—​in its singular version—​is still unabashedly “roman.” How can we make that bold as well? We need to enable the GREP style to cope with variations of the key word.

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5. Refine the instruction

Let’s remove the plural, so the word searched for is image rather than images. The @ symbol that appears at the end of the To Text field is actually a nested menu. We can navigate through this to the Wildcards submenu, and choose Any Character. As with all GREP commands, this is replaced in the instruction by a shortcut—​in this case, it’s a full stop. So the command now looks like this: To Text: image.

6. The plural works

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This is how the text now looks: both the words image and images have been made bold, since the wildcard allowed the GREP command to look forward one character. But there’s another problem: the word imagery is only partly highlighted. We need to define a GREP that will cope with a variable number of characters.

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InStep: GREP Styles

7. Variable variables

We can tell the GREP system to look for a variable number of characters after the word image by adding a code to specify that. This takes the form of the minimum and maximum number of characters placed within curly brackets. So the code now looks like this: To Text: image.{0,2}

But as we can see, this produces a problem. While image, images, and imagery have now all been set in bold, the i after the word image is also bold.

8. Change the wildcard

Why did that happen? When we told InDesign to look for Any Character as its wildcard, this includes a space—​so both the space and the i after it were made bold. We can fix this by changing Any Character to Any Word Character (also selectable from the Wildcard menu). The shortcut for this is \w, so the code now reads: To Text: image\w{0,2}

Now, the three words are set correctly.

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InStep: GREP Styles

9. Add the next word

One GREP style can be applied to several different words; they’re separated by a vertical bar | with no space on either side. So to add the word text to the definition, the code reads like this: To Text: image\w{0,2}|text

As we can see, though, the word context has also been picked up, with the text component set in bold. So back we go to the Style definition.

10. Set the position

In order to prevent InDesign from finding text when it’s in the middle of a word, we can tell it to apply the style only when text is the beginning of the word. We can do this by choosing Location > Beginning of Word, which abbreviates to the shortcut \>. Note that this shortcut must be placed before the word, rather than after it: To Text: image\w{0,2}|\<text

The word is now correctly formatted, and context is left alone.

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InStep: GREP Styles

11. Have the final word

We can add the word design to the list, using the | character to separate it from the other words. This is how the code will read: To Text: image\w{0,2}|\<text|design

A couple of problems appear. The word designer has been partially highlighted, and the second appearance of the word, after the bullet point, has been omitted, because it begins with a capital letter.

12. Modify the spec

To make the capital letter appear, we can choose Modifiers > Case Insensitive On, which places the code (?i) before the word in question: To Text: image\w{0,2}|\<text|(?i)design

Now, though, while Design has been picked up correctly, so has InDesign. D’OH! That’s the next thing to fix.

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InStep: GREP Styles

13. Start and finish the word

We can tell InDesign to pick up the word design only when it’s both the start and the finish of the word by choosing these options from the Location submenu. We can also type the codes in manually by placing \< before the word and \> after it: To Text: image\w{0,2}|\<text|\<(?i)design\>

Now, all the words are set correctly.

14. Highlight the numbers

In this piece of text, three words are linked to footnotes by superscript numbers. To make them stand out, we can set them in red. To do this, we’ll need to create a new GREP style, using the button at the bottom of the panel. In the To Text field, we can choose Wildcards > Any Digit, which will use the shortcut \d: To Text: \d

All we need to do next is to define a Character Style for the footnote, and it will be picked out in red.

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InStep: GREP Styles

15. Bite the bullets

16. Add a custom code

Rather than using full points, the setting of this text uses bullets for emphasis. These are the standard Option+8/Alt+8 bullets, and they’re small and mean. They’d look much better if, say, we used a Zapf Dingbats character, at a 50% tint so it’s not too strong. The letter l (that’s a lowercase L, not the number 1) will work well. To implement this, we first have to manually change each bullet in the text into a lowercase l. But while we can define a new Character Style that sets the letter in Zapf Dingbats, obviously this would set every l in the document in that style, which would look ridiculous. One thing you can’t do with GREP styles is to tell them to change one character for another. (Anyone out there want to write a script?)

To fix the problem, we can make custom code characters of our own. Let’s replace each bullet in the text not by l, but by lz—​the z standing for Zapf Dingbats. So now, we tell InDesign only to search for those two characters together: To Text: lz

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InStep: GREP Styles

Now, every l is left alone, and only the characters lz are changed to Zapf Dingbats. The question now is, how can we stop that z from showing up as a rectangular gray block?

17. Find the hidden style

18. Define a hidden GREP

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We can’t tell InDesign to ignore a character altogether, but we can define a Character Style that’s invisible. First, make a new Character Style, and set the Character Color to None. That’s a good start, but the character still takes up space, even if it’s invisible. So in the Advanced Character Formats pane, set the Horizontal Scale to its minimum value of 1%. Now, the character will take up virtually no space. We’ll need to make a new GREP style to apply to the letter z. It’s straightforward enough: we simply apply the style Hidden (or whatever you’ve called it) to the letter z. And as you can see, it works perfectly! Right?

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InStep: GREP Styles

Well, not quite. Did you spot the error? Look at the last line of text: it reads “be lay with your text settings.” The letter z has disappeared from lazy, and that’s not an error that your spell-checker will catch.

19. Look behind you

We can fix this by telling InDesign to apply the Hidden style only when the letter z is preceded by the letter l. To do this, choose Match > Positive Lookbehind from the pop-up @ menu. The code for this is (?<=), and it needs to be placed before the letter to which it applies. Since the letter we want to look out for is l, we must type that after the = sign: To Text: (?<=l)z

Now, the entire text is formatted correctly, with large chunky bullets.

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InStep: GREP Styles

Conclusion As we’ve seen here, GREP styles can be used for many different purposes. This example is a bit extreme; you rarely have this much styling to do in one paragraph. But at some point you might need to apply special formatting to all dates, or to change all numbers to old-style glyphs, and so on. In some fonts there’s too much space after certain characters; it’s easy to set up GREP styles to apply tighter spacing. Once you become familiar with the options that GREP styles give you, you’ll quickly start to recognize the opportunities to use them to save time and effort. The major drawback with GREP styles is that while they can apply Character Styles to text, they’re unable to replace text with different characters. It would be useful, for instance, to be able to automatically recognize and replace every space-hyphen-space with an em dash, but this remains a task for Find/Change. The GREP system may have its limitations, but it’s a hugely powerful way of incorporating automated styling into your design. The only problem that’s likely to arise is that another designer, inheriting your files, won’t know about GREP and will be driven mad trying to figure out why he or she is unable to stop particular words from appearing in bold. Be kind and leave them a note, so that they too may learn the amazing power of GREP.

n Steve Caplin is a digital artist whose work has appeared in magazines and newspapers around the world. He’s the author of a dozen books, including the best-selling How to Cheat in Photoshop series, and is the editor of the 3D printing blog 3dgeni.us.

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What’s New With By Author InDesign CC Feature: title

For Creative Cloud subscribers, the new version of InDesign offers EPUB enhancements, a slick new font menu, QR code generation, and more. By Mike Rankin Image: Adobe.com

W

ith all the hoopla and ensuing controversy surrounding Adobe’s Creative Cloud announcements, is it possible that the new versions of the most powerful creative apps on the planet are being a tad overlooked? In any other circumstances, all the talk would be about Photoshop’s new Camera Shake Reduction filter, Illustrator’s new Touch Type tool, and InDesign’s new… Hmm. It’s hard to single out any new element of InDesign CC as the one with the “wow” factor, sure to blow people’s minds and make

them want to upgrade and never look back. No one will be accusing Adobe of packing this release with numerous bells and whistles. And yet, InDesign CC is a milestone release, and one of the most fundamentally important in the history of the product. The program has been completely updated under the hood to offer better performance, more stability, and a modern architecture to support the growth of exciting new features for years to come. This was InDesign’s 100,000-mile tune-up. And while it was in the shop, it also got some body work done and a new paint job. So let’s take it out for a test drive. Here’s what’s new in InDesign CC. This article originally appeared at CreativePro.com as InDesign CC: First Look

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Feature: title

64-Bit Support Much like we saw last year with Illustrator CS6, the most important enhancement in InDesign CC might be an invisible one, with no new menu, tool, or dialog box to show its presence. But this invisible “feature” may end up being most people’s favorite thing

Figure 1: InDesign’s new default “Medium Dark” interface

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about InDesign CC. InDesign is now a 64-bit application, making it capable of using RAM over and above 3GB on Mac OS and Windows computers. In past versions, you could pack your machine with tons of RAM, but after a certain point it wouldn’t make any impact on InDesign performance.

The application simply wasn’t capable of taking advantage of more resources. But now the sky’s the limit. If you typically work on extremely large or complex files, you could see great improvements in speed and stability.

User Interface InDesign CC sports a new user interface that gives it a look and feel consistent with Creative Cloud siblings like Photoshop and Illustrator (Figure 1). The new default is a dark color theme— well, technically “medium dark.” In the preferences, you can choose from four brightness levels: Light (which approximates the brightness of CS6), Medium Light, Medium Dark, and, for the truly nocturnal among you, Dark. You can also choose any brightness level in between Light and Dark via a slider, and match the pasteboard to the selected theme color (Figure 2, next page). Dialog boxes are also more navigable via keyboard, as you can select almost any

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in this area. For example, if you have developed your own CSS for EPUB, you don’t want InDesign creating unnecessary code that you have to clean out. Now you can export to EPUB without CSS, so that only the classes associated with the styles are marked in the HTML tags; no extraneous override classes Figure 2: Appearance preferences allow you to control the brightness level of the interface with four color themes and are created. a slider. The Object Style Options dialog box menu, field, or checkbox without ever touch- now includes Export Tagging features (like ing your mouse or trackpad.

HiDPI Support InDesign now supports high-resolution screens like the Mac’s Retina displays, giving you crisper and clearer views of your documents. In addition, InDesign itself has been polished up with high-resolution font menus and completely redrawn high-res icons throughout the application.

All-New Font Menu The font menu in the Control panel is probably the one new feature in InDesign CC that most folks will notice (and appreciate) right away in their day-to-day use. The menu has been changed to offer new ways of searching, selecting, and displaying your fonts.

EPUB/HTML Enhancements Adobe is extremely devoted to making InDesign a premier tool for EPUB production, and the new version sports many advances

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Paragraph and Character styles already do). And Object Style Options now includes Export Options which allow you to choose custom rasterization and custom layout options (Figure 3). Support has also been added for index stories, and live hyperlinks to indexed terms are present in exported EPUBs. Other EPUB improvements include scripting support for EPUB export, cleaner code for lists (both ordered and unordered), better class naming, and the handling of CSS classname conflicts.

Figure 3: New object style Export Options for EPUB and HTML allow you to apply custom rasterization and layout settings.

Font Search The Font menu in both the Control panel and the Character panel now allows you to

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Feature: title

CC = Cloud of Controversy On May 6th, Adobe announced that it would be ending the sales of perpetual software licenses for new products, and making the new versions of applications like InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator available exclusively to Creative Cloud subscribers. It was a watershed moment that marked the end of the Creative Suite and the start of a new era where access to cutting-edge software would come at the price of a monthly fee. Adobe attempted to win over the hearts and minds of customers by packing Creative Cloud with features and services that went beyond the mainstay applications. Online storage, Behance memberships, Typekit fonts, and the ability to publish an unlimited number of iPad apps with the Digital Publishing Suite were all to be included in a Creative Cloud subscription at no extra cost. Yet a number of people were shocked and angered by the new policy, which they saw as greedy and unfair. They registered their displeasure in many articles, comments, tweets, and forum posts. Companies, schools, and universities were wary of the impact the Creative Cloud would have on their budgets. A petition at Change.org was created to protest the subscription-only policy. As of June 9th, the petition had over 30,000 signatures. Adobe evangelists worked hard to address concerns and dispel confusion. Terry White posted Creative Cloud Myths. And a post at the Creative Cloud Team Blog recognized legitimate concerns over issues like file access and promised “to have news around this issue shortly.” Clearly, Adobe is betting a lot on the Cloud and sees it as vital to their business strategy. So don’t expect to see any major backtracking. There will not be a “CS7.” But the dialogue will continue. Some customers will never make the leap to the Cloud, but many others—either eagerly or reluctantly—will sign on simply because they need the tools in order to stay in business.

CS6 and earlier versions of InDesign, you can use an alternative method called Search First Word Only. Browse & Apply Fonts You can browse fonts with your Up and Down arrow keys, and apply them by clicking on a font name or pressing the Enter key. Previously, you could put your cursor in the font field and use arrow keys to apply fonts, but you couldn’t see all the choices in the menu, and each font was applied as soon you arrowed to it.

For more information and opinion on the impact of the Creative Cloud, check out the following: Adobe Ends the Creative Suite Era and Embraces the Cloud at CreativePro.com Adobe’s Creative Cloud: Perception vs Reality by Bob Levine InDesignSecrets Podcast 194

search for fonts by any character(s) in their names. For example, if I wanted to choose a script font to apply to some text, I could just type “script” in the Font menu, and it would

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display only fonts whose names included the word “script.” Likewise, if I wanted to see only my bold fonts, I could type “bold” (Figure 4). If you prefer the way the Font menu works in

Figure 4: Entering the word “script” in the new font search field will display any font with the word “script” in its name.

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Feature: title

Font Favorites You can now tag fonts as Favorites, and choose to display only your favorites, eliminating the clutter and endless scrolling of a vast font list (Figure 5). Font Family Grouping Font families are now grouped together in a collapsed set that you can reveal or hide (Figure 6).

Figure 5: Click the star next to a font name to set it as a favorite.

Figure 6: Click the triangle next to a font family name to reveal or hide all the family members.

QR Codes A QR (Quick Response) code is a special kind of barcode that can be scanned by a device like a smartphone and interpreted by software to create things like hyperlinks, text messages, emails, and more. InDesign CC gives you the ability to create QR codes via a new Object menu command. Simply choose Object > Generate QR Code. Then, in the dialog box, choose a type (hyperlink, plain text, text message, email, or business card) and a color (Figure 7, next page). When you click OK, you get a loaded cursor that you can drag to place and size your QR code as

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QR Code Types Here are examples of some of the types of QR codes you can make with InDesign CC. To try them out, scan them with mobile apps like QR Droid for Android and Qrafter for iOS.

hyperlink

text message

email

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Feature: title

desired. InDesign’s QR codes are vector art (black with a transparent background), so you can scale them as you wish, and apply fills and strokes, just like with any other InDesign objects. And if you hover your ­cursor over a QR code, you get a tooltip revealing its details (Figure 8).

Figure 7: The Generate QR Code dialog box, where you can select a type, enter content, and apply a color.

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New Document Dialog Box Enhancements When you’re creating a new document, wouldn’t it be nice to see a preview of it as you set options like page size, margins and columns, bleed and slug, etc.? Well, with InDesign CC now you can, thanks to a Preview checkbox subtly occupying the bottom left corner of the dialog box. With Preview selected, you can see your document-to-be behind the dialog box, and any change in the settings is immediately reflected (Figure 9). Also, two icons have been added to the right of the Document Preset pop-up menu, for saving and deleting presets. And

Figure 8: A tooltip reveals the content of a QR code.

now in order to see the Bleed and Slug settings, you click a triangle next to the words “Bleed and Slug” rather than the nebulous More Options button in CS6 and earlier.

Adobe Exchange Integration Also new is the integration of Adobe Exchange into InDesign. Previously, you could download and install an extension

Figure 9: The New Document dialog box now offers a Preview option so you can see what a document will look like with the settings you choose.

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Feature: title

to add the Exchange panel, where you can browse, buy, and install plugins, extensions, and other add-ons for Creative Suite products. Exchange will also be integrated into other CC apps like Photoshop, Illustrator, InCopy, and Dreamweaver, but the panel will show resources only for the app you’re using (so you won’t see Photoshop brushes in the Exchange panel inside InDesign). The Exchange panel has two modes, a compact-width mode and a full-width mode (Figure 10). So there you have it: InDesign CC. It’s been thoroughly overhauled both inside and out. It offers a good number of EPUB enhancements, a slick new font menu, QR code generation, and a marketplace of InDesign goodies right within the application. And it’s available exclusively to Creative Cloud subscribers.

Figure 10: The compact-width mode and the full-width mode of the Adobe Exchange panel.

n Mike Rankin is the Editor in Chief of InDesign Magazine and CreativePro.com.

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By Nigel French

InType: How to Be a Better Designer, Part 2

For the previous InType, I covered parts 1–5 of how to be a better designer, where I talked about the importance of studying graphic design history, typography, color, space, and designing on a grid. This is a continuation of that article, with parts 6–12. D.I.Y. Just like the old adage states, if you want a job done well, you need to do it yourself. Such a mindset implies mistrust of other people’s abilities and can lead you to overextend yourself, but on the positive side, it encourages you to extend your skillset beyond your comfort zone. A pet hate of mine is being pigeonholed. People tend to assume that because you do one thing well, that’s all you do. As if

Pigeonholes are for pigeons!

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strengths in one area imply weaknesses in others. This type of thinking is no more or less prevalent in the graphic arts than elsewhere. But as creative people, we should push against such a blinkered outlook. Just because we can design long documents doesn’t mean we can’t also design a logo and vice versa. As a way to extend your skills, take on jobs from different disciplines—​magazine

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InType: How to Be a Better Designer, Part 2

The basic compositional principle of the rule of thirds can be applied to all sorts of designs.

design, logo design, web design, exhibition design, any opportunity that comes your way. Borrow ideas from other design fields such as industrial design and architecture. Designers are creative and adaptable, and when faced with a challenge that involves using unfamiliar tools or techniques or working in a whole different area of design, we should look for the similarities rather than the differences. Take your own photographs The D.I.Y. ethos can be applied in all manner of ways. Perhaps because I’m a photographer,

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I’m a big advocate of designers taking their own photographs. Photography helps focus your eye, and develops and sustains your compositional skills.

Taking photographs keeps you alert to the world around you. There’s a quote attributed to seminal street photographer Gary Winogrand that sums it up nicely: “I photograph to see what the world looks like photographed.” Taking photographs also has practical benefits: Whip out your phone or camera and take pictures to jog your memory or—​ over the course of time—​to build your own image bank of textures, skies, patterns, and color combinations. The ease of digital photography makes it simple to amass collections of any subject that interest you. And in

Photos by Gary Winogrand

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InType: How to Be a Better Designer, Part 2

Say no to stale stock art.

days when it was synonymous with cheesy pictures of businessmen shaking hands, much of it still looks American, which is fine if the subject you’re illustrating is American, but too often I see European organizations and companies illustrating their promotional materials with pictures of people that have an other-side-of-the-Atlantic vibe.

The Lightroom Library module

collecting, one often finds that the whole is more than the sum of its parts. Stock photography has its place, but in the past I’ve wasted too much time looking for other people’s images. Rather than fritter away an afternoon searching for that perfect image, why not take your own? Obviously

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this isn’t always feasible, and at the end of the day, we need to choose the best photo for the job, but there’s something particularly satisfying about incorporating your own images rather than using those of a stranger. And while the quality of stock photography has improved dramatically from the

Design your own fonts At last count, there were a bajillion fonts in the world, so perhaps what the world needs now is not more fonts. That said, there will come a time when you can’t find that exact typeface you’re looking for. Why not design your own? To which a valid answer might

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Draw your own illustrations Rather than get frustrated trying to communicate your concept to an illustrator, draw it yourself. Can’t draw? No matter—​Illustrator and Photoshop offer myriad opportunities for illustrating effectively even for those who find drawing a straight line a challenge using “traditional” techniques.

Hugh Sans: A display face designed by me and based on a friend’s handwriting

be, because it will take hours and hours and hours. But if you’re inclined toward type design, the process of designing your own typeface using FontLab Studio or Fontographer can be an informative exercise. Even if you never finish (personally, I have several typefaces in various states of

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completion), the process has its own benefits—​or, to put it another way, it’s more about the journey than the arrival. And on this journey you’ll develop a keener understanding for the subtleties of letterforms, the way letter combinations work together, and why kerning pairs are so important.

Write your own copy The divide between words and pictures is a false one. Text and image are two means to the same end: communication. Just because you’re visual doesn’t mean you can’t also be verbal. And because your designs are only as good as their weakest link, why leave such an essential component as the text content to someone else? (I draw the line at being your own proofreader. Here, you really do need someone else, because you’re too close to the words to see the glaring errors that a good proofreader will catch instantly.)

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Make your own paper Too many design jobs are undermined by inappropriate paper. Picking paper is perhaps the last choice we make on a design project. And because we’re already tired by that point or because we don’t know enough about paper, the choice too often is a default one. Arm yourself with sample paper stocks to understand the properties of paper. Even better, make your own. Just like designing your typeface, the journey is more important than the destination.

No need to reinvent the wheel—​unless you’re particularly keen on learning more about how a wheel works.

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Know your limitations Of course, one can take self-reliance too far. Somehow, to balance our determination to control every step of the design process, we need to find the humility to recognize our shortcomings as well as the confidence to know our strengths—​and to play to them. We also need to trust that our collaborators, if we communicate clearly enough, will deliver the goods and add value to the project. The wheel has already been invented and re-imagined. Unless we’re after a more intimate understanding of how that wheel works, we don’t need to reinvent it ourselves. It’s OK, sometimes, to use templates—​just make sure that by the time you’re finished with them, they no longer look like templates. Collaborate In reality, most design jobs require collaboration—​with a printer (and you should make it your goal to befriend a good one), a writer, a web developer, a proofreader, etc.

Meetups are a great way to connect with other creatives.

But even if you’ve loosened your grip on the reins and given up on doing the whole thing yourself, any prior experience you have in these areas will come in handy. You will be in a more knowledgeable and empathetic place to communicate your needs to your collaborators.

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While putting together this article, I posed the question to Facebook and LinkedIn colleagues, “If you could give one piece of advice to graphic designers— novices and veterans—about how to be a better designer, what would that be?” The response I received was encouraging—​a humbling reminder that collaboration will more often than not yield a better result than going solo, and that it’s OK to ask for help. It was also a reminder that we’re lucky enough to work in an industry where people are generous with their knowledge. Sometimes, all you have to do is ask. Taking and giving criticism If you’re a creative genius and visionary (or independently wealthy), you won’t need to waste time worrying what others think about your design work. For the remaining 99.9% of us, getting feedback is essential when working on any design project—​and we should not limit that to feedback from

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other designers and creatives. Conduct a focus group about your design project in progress. It doesn’t have to be formal—​just a group of friends and colleagues whose design opinions you respect. Inviting criticism—​either by sharing your work with a trusted circle of colleagues or by posting to a website for all the world to shoot down—​is a brave thing to do. And it can be deflating when you don’t hear what you want. We need to listen politely to it all (through gritted teeth if necessary). With time and confidence, our gut instincts will tell us which pieces of criticism are on target and need to be acted upon, and which entirely miss the point and can be quietly ignored. The flip side of getting criticism is knowing how to give it. And for this you need a design vocabulary. For your advice to be useful to someone else (as well as to you, the advice-giver), you need to be able to express clearly what you like and what you don’t like—​and to say why.

Image: Ben Hur (1959)

Lone wolf or team player? The impulse to simultaneously embrace the two extremes of being a lone wolf and a team player provides a living and valuable tension in our quest to be a better designer. Striking the right balance will always be a struggle, and the composition of that balance will vary throughout the course of a design career. Never lose sight of the importance of broadening your skillset and how liberating and satisfying it can be to take on all aspects of the design project yourself—​but at the same time, embrace the value of sharing and growing as part of a team.

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Keep it simple For me, the necessity to keep it simple is a lesson I keep learning again and again. Simplicity is indeed a difficult thing to arrive at. But if you’re in any doubt about the aesthetic benefits of simplicity, look at these enduring designs from the history of graphic design. What they all have in common—​and a crucial aspect of keeping it simple—​is that they all have one really good idea, rather than multiple “OK” ideas. In drilling down to such simple outcomes, we need to be minimalist, and that means justifying every element of our designs. If we can’t articulate a reason why a particular element needs to be there, then it probably should be removed. Graphic design has to communicate, and often it can communicate more with less. Sensory overload can sometimes be good, but people have limited attention spans, and unless they are really invested in your

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Clockwise from top left: Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon designed by Storm Thorgesson (1972), Joy Division Unknown Pleasures by Pete Saville (1979), Milton Glaser’s I Love New York logo (1977), and the London Underground map based on Harry Beck’s original from 1933.

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work, there is such a thing as too much information. The road to simplicity is full of obstacles, not least of which are all the bells and whistles we can adorn our work with—​ especially tempting if they involve new software features that we’re dying to try out. It’s a fine line between being cutting edge and being a fashion victim: Today’s 3D extrusion might look as dated as a 1990s drop shadow just months from now. Ask yourself honestly, does the effect really help better communicate the message? Reflections, foils, 3D effects, twirls, etc. all have their place. But be aware that it’s harder to learn the discretion of when to deploy them than it is to learn the techniques themselves. You don’t want to stand out for the wrong reason—just for being different.

Sweat the details Graphic design is necessarily a detailoriented profession, which makes us, as designers, a fastidious bunch. It also means that when we don’t get the details right, we open ourselves up to criticism from other designers and would-be designers (and that includes just about everybody) who will find it easier to pick on the faults rather than identify the strengths in our work. Sweating the details means first doing no harm: getting our type right, making sure we’re using apostrophes correctly, stripping out unnecessary spaces, spell-checking our work, making sure that our line breaks increase rather than inhibit comprehension, taking advantage of OpenType features to elevate our type above the level of the hobbyist. Nothing feeds the pedantry of the roving designer like finding an opening

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. —​Leonardo da Vinci INDESIGN MAGAZINE  54

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quote mark where there should have been an apostrophe. Let’s make sure we don’t make ourselves easy targets. I would argue that this need for attention to detail means we also need to take

A small mistake like a misplaced quote mark seems very big indeed when you see it in the title of a movie. Image: Shoot ’Em Up (2007)

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responsibility for the content of our text, even if we are not the authors. Ultimately any design we create will be undermined by its weakest link, so if the text that goes into it is ungrammatical or overly verbose, we should tactfully suggest rewording and reworking. (I’ve also been known to engage in some guerrilla editing of my client’s work, but this is a risky proposition and not a tactic I can endorse.) Texting and other new ways of communicating are changing the rules of type and the standards to which typography are held. What it means to be a literate person is something different today than it was 20, 10, or even just 5 years ago. English—​and all languages—​are constantly evolving. We don’t want to become tiresome curmudgeons on the subject of correct grammar and spelling, but George Orwell’s 1946 essay “Politics and the English Language” is as relevant today as it ever was: “A man may take to drink because he feels himself to be a failure, and then fail all the

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Don’t lose perspective Of course, while being eagled-eyed about the smallest of details and worrying about the size of kerning pairs and the correct use of diacritics, we also need to keep sight of the bigger picture. Just as we move in and out on our page with the Zoom tool, so we need to zoom in and out on our project to take stock of the micro and the macro.

Be a perpetual student We are what we eat, and likewise creatively we are a product of everything we have seen, heard, read, and experienced. So feed your creativity—​and be a glutton! Visit museums,

George Orwell

more completely because he drinks. It is rather the same thing that is happening to the English language. [. . .] It becomes ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.”

Be a sponge—​soak it all up!

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attend conferences, listen to design-related podcasts, subscribe to designer blogs, follow designers on Twitter, subscribe to lynda.com. And while you’re doing all this, develop your own design library. Graphic design is a broad church, made up of overlapping disciplines. Jump at every chance to learn more about any related field: Take a letterpress class, take a screen printing class, a life drawing class, a photography class. Study creative writing, film, calligraphy. It all goes into the mix. It all adds depth and nuance to your design creations, sometimes in obvious ways, sometimes in ways that are subtle. And if you’re good at something design-related, don’t miss the chance to add it to your résumé. It might be the thing that distinguishes you from other candidates. Be a perpetual teacher Hand in hand with being a perpetual student is being a perpetual teacher. Often the line between the two is blurred. As any

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An essential course for all designers: John McWade’s Things Every Designer Should Know on lynda.com.

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teacher will tell you, there’s nothing like teaching a subject in order to learn it. Don’t feel you need to be an expert to teach. As long as you are one step ahead of your students, you’re OK, and often the empathy that comes from grappling with a subject can trump expertise. Those who are new to teaching have not forgotten what it’s like to not know something, and this vulnerability can make for a strong rapport with your students—​so long as those students are invested in learning.

Step away from the computer! Everyone who designs with a computer has had the experience of wasting hours because they tried to skip the essential steps of making thumbnail sketches and/or mind maps. Our computers and our software are so seductive, promising us speedy design solutions that effortlessly have a finished quality about them. But this is where the computer is deceptive. Just because it’s easy

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Sketches and mind maps can be invaluable tools for getting a project started.

to create something that looks slick and finished doesn’t make it a good design that communicates effectively. And then there’s the all-too-present danger of being sucked down the rabbit hole of tweaking rather than designing. InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop, with their precision tools and ultra-high magnifications, can suck us into tweaking the finest of details. As I’ve already mentioned, such attention to detail is necessary, but if all you’re doing is tweaking a bad idea, all you’ll end up with is a bad idea that looks tweaked.

For this reason, it’s essential that you sketch your ideas before sitting down at the computer. No matter how excited you are to get started, it’s important to organize your ideas on paper before going digital, trying as much variation as possible. Even if, like mine, your sketches are embarrassingly childlike, the process of making them will help you sort the bad ideas from the potential winners. When you’ve narrowed your ideas down to the latter, you’re ready to pick up the mouse or stylus and start working at the computer.

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Design all the time Work/life balance is a fine thing to aspire to, but graphic design is not a job you leave behind at the office. While we may lay down our tools at the end of the working day, we never stop designing, and everything around us is grist for our mill. Design is all around us, and when we see it we should ask, how could I improve this? Why did they choose that color combination—​and would another combination work better? Why did they choose that typeface? You can find inspiration in all sorts of places, but here are some obvious ones: »» Your immediate environment. Take a walk around the block; document what you see. »» Nature: If ever you need a pattern, a proportion, or a color scheme, go back to the source; the natural world is full of them. »» Architecture shares much in common with graphic design, and many designers approach their work as page architects, constructing their layouts in a modular

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way not unlike how an architect might construct a building. »» Collect an inspiration folder. If you see something you like, tear it out and keep it, use it as a springboard, or take a shot with your phone, a screen grab, or start a Pinterest board. Don’t forget the client We can use our time away from the computer to research the needs of our client. Graphic design is not just about making something that is aesthetically beautiful—​ it’s also about finding a solution to a problem. Do your research, and you will better understand that problem. Listen to the needs of your clients, and you will come to view them as allies.

Think like a designer Good designers are storytellers, and the best designs are those underpinned by a compelling narrative. Why did you make the choices you did? How, out of all the possible solutions, did you come up with

The Web is an inexhaustible source of inspiration.

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this one? Even if this narrative isn’t obvious, the process that went into making your design will become part of the weave of the finished product. Not only does this make for a more multi-faceted and nuanced result, it also makes it more pleasing for you to design, and your concept more compelling to your client. As part of developing a narrative, you might find it useful to work in themes, to become a collector (digital or physical), and to make connections between seemingly unconnected elements and stories. Part of being a designer means staying current by reading the design press. Design Observer, Design Week, Creative Review, How. The more you know, the more confidently you will project yourself. It’s a bold statement to declare: “I am a graphic designer,” but the more you do so with confidence, the more you will grow into that role.

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Post your portfolio and projects on Behance.

While you’re waiting for the phone to ring, self-initiate some projects. Need an annual report in your portfolio? Go ahead and design your own. Print-on-demand services like blurb.com make it affordable to print single copies of professional looking books.

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Don’t take yourself too seriously In the midst of all this serious stuff, we don’t want to lose our sense of humor—​or take ourselves too seriously. Graphic design is often most effective when injected with humor and irreverence. Just be aware that though our clients may be global, our sense

of humor may be more localized. Humor is a personal (and culturally specific) thing, and doesn’t always travel well, so do your research first, and when in doubt, play it safe. Don’t let taking yourself seriously inhibit you from making mistakes. If you’re going to take risks, you will make mistakes, and

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them gives you a certain credibility and guards against embarrassing errors—​which are not the same as bold mistakes. Once you’ve learned the rules, you’re in a good position to break them. But only if you have to—​don’t make breaking the rules its own orthodoxy.

that’s OK, so long as you learn from them. Just don’t make the same mistake multiple times—​then you look like an idiot!

The rules Graphic design, like any field or profession, has its rules and best practices. Following

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Impose constraints As well as working within the rules of typography, color, and composition, you might try imposing constraints on your design as a way to focus your creativity. If your project doesn’t have limits, impose your own to force yourself to be more creative. Try designing in a single font—​one size and one

color. Without the crutch of scale, color, or style differences, how will you indicate hierarchy? Or instead of the luxury of full color, try designing in a single color, or in black and white. Bad design works! (occasionally) Following the rules is no guarantee of success; rather, it is an insurance against failure. And just as there is no guarantee that by following the rules, our designs will be

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good, the opposite is also true. Sometimes, bad design works. Here are three examples of institutions I hold in high esteem but whose designs I think are ugly. This doesn’t make me like the things any less—​perhaps in some perverse way they may even make them more attractive. Trader Joe’s offers outstanding groceries at reasonable prices and with friendly service. Their logo is . . . let’s just say it’s not to my taste.

But that didn’t stop the Olympics from being brilliant.

The 2012 London Olympics were, despite the ticket allocation problems, a resounding success, providing a tangible feel-good factor for London, Britain, and the power of sport to bring people together. But the logo . . . Well, I tried to love it. I thought I’d get used to it, but I couldn’t—​it jarred every time I saw it, and I saw it everywhere.

For my third example, I’ve chosen US bank notes with their hodgepodge of fonts and decorative flourishes. Because all denominations are the same size, it’s impossible for the blind and partially sighted to distinguish between them, making them an epic design fail. That said, if anyone wants to give me more, you won’t hear any complaints.

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Evidence that the design of currency doesn’t have to suck. The “tails” sides of UK coinage together make up the royal seal seen on the reverse of the pound coin (top).

Conclusion So that’s my plan for being a better designer. It’s not without its contradictions and omissions. It’s a work in progress and something I hope I have cause to revisit and refine in the future. As designers we are a varied bunch, so not all of this advice will be relevant to you, but I hope you will find

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some of it useful and provocative—​adapt as necessary to your own needs.

n Nigel French is a graphic designer, photographer, author, and teacher living in Brighton, UK. He is the author of InDesign Type and Photoshop Unmasked, both from Adobe Press, as well as several titles in the lynda.com online training library, including InDesign Typography.

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where creatives go to know

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By Mike Rankin

PEPCON 2013

This year’s Print + ePublishing show hit all the right notes in Austin. The fourth annual Publishing Secrets Print + ePublishing Conference (aka PEPCON) took place in Austin, Texas from April 28th through May 1st. And like its predecessors in Seattle, San Francisco, and Washington, DC, this year’s show was a resounding success. Over the course of four days, nearly 400 attendees saw over 30 world-class speakers present sessions on cutting-edge publishing ideas and technology. The show kicked off on Sunday with halfday bootcamp sessions designed to get folks up and running quickly with InDesign, Adobe DPS, EPUB, and CSS/HTML. On Monday, the conference got up to full speed, beginning with a keynote from Adobe’s Eric Snowden with tips on how to

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succeed in today’s publishing landscape using platforms like Behance to become an active member of the creative community and get your work noticed. Monday sessions began with quick presentations on Adobe Muse, InDesign FX, DPS slideshows, and essential scripts and plug-ins. Longer afternoon sessions ranged from high-level discussions on editorial workflows and the issues involved in going from print to digital to nitty-gritty details on InDesign automation, EPUB creation, PDF forms, and fonts for digital publications. Despite the wealth of knowledge being shared, no PEPCON would be complete without the vital element of fun. So during lunch and the evening networking

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In total, nearly 400 attendees came to PEPCON 2013.

Eric Snowden of Adobe discusses the benefits of Bēhance in the Monday morning keynote session.

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reception, there was live music (this was Austin, after all). And Monday night’s festivities also included the traditional Ignite InDesign! presentations by brave (and talented) attendees on topics like InDesign for Photographers, creating children's books, having fun with Find/Change, and the shared joys (and pains) of the Twitter eprdctn community. Tuesday began with an entertaining and inspirational keynote by Austin Kleon, author of Steal Like an Artist, who presented his ten tips for enhancing your creativity and your work by embracing your influences and accepting the fact that nothing you do can be truly original. Russell Viers kept things rolling with his inimitable panache, leading into important strategic sessions by other speakers on topics like the future of the book, multilingual publishing, and PDF for tablets. One of the best things about PEPCON is that the learning isn’t limited to the classrooms. It also happens out in the hallways,

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Keynote speaker Austin Kleon, author of Steal Like an Artist.

where the Help Desk gives attendees a chance to sit with speakers, ask questions, and get problems solved. And that’s also where you could find PEPCON’s sponsors: companies like Rorohiko and Typefi to help with automation needs; Em Software and Recosoft for workflow solutions; and Twixl, AppStudio, and Aquafadas to help with digital publishing needs. Oh, and there was also a friendly little company called Adobe there if you wanted to talk about any of its offerings, including the Creative Cloud.

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Annemarie Beliard of Adobe was on hand to answer questions about the Creative Cloud.

Another traditional highlight of PEPCON is the chance for attendees to meet with members of the Adobe Development Team. Unless you plan on moving to Seattle in the near future, you’ll never get a better

opportunity ask questions and share ideas directly with the folks who make InDesign. Tuesday afternoon sessions included eye-popping visual effects from Deke McClelland and essential design concepts by

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Nigel French, plus a strategy session on how to prepare for the next two years, an introduction to iBooks Author, and more deep dives into DPS and EPUB. As always, the show wrapped up with a tips and tricks session, plus giveaways of many goodies including a copy of the Holy Grail for type addicts, the Adobe Font Folio.

Lunchtime fun with great live music and delicious food.

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For the attendees, speakers, and sponsors, hotel on the Magnificent Mile. It'll be another PEPCON 2013 in Austin was a jam-packed four days of InDepth and international pubfour days of valuable learning, sharing, seelishing expertise. Hope to see you there! ing old friends, and making new connections. If you missed out, never fear, there’s n always next year. Speaking of which… Mike Rankin is the Editor in Chief of InDesign Magazine and CreativePro.com. PEPCON 2014 will be held in Chicago, Illinois from June 15–18, 2014 at the Marriott

Roundtables helped spark conversations among folks interested in specific topics.

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Discussions were lively outside the main hall, where attendees, speakers, and sponsors mingled, sharing ideas and opinions.

Russell Viers sports the most sought-after bit of PEPCON swag: the exclusive speakers’ t-shirt.

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Up next: Chicago! Site of PEPCON 2014, scheduled for June 15–18, 2014.

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By Mike Rankin

The 10 Most Ridiculous Features in InDesign

Features, features, features. InDesign’s got a million of ’em, and they range from the sublime to the ridiculous. Most of the time we strive to bring you the sublime. But this time, in the lighthearted spirit of summer, we thought it would be fun to take a look at the other end of the spectrum.

This article was inspired by the InDesignSecrets blog post Nominate Your Favorite Ridiculous InDesign Feature.

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When you consider the scope of InDesign— the sheer number of features and how they all fit together and perform—you start to see the program as an incredible feat of engineering. And we all have our favorite features. Some are elegant and clever, the ones that save us time, money, and effort by helping us accomplish huge tasks with maximum efficiency. Others allow us to engage

our aesthetic side, making beautifullydesigned graphics and pages. But nothing in this world is perfect, including InDesign. It’s certainly got its share of features that are, well, to put it bluntly, ridiculous. What exactly do we mean by a “ridiculous” feature? Something silly. Something useless. Something that InDesign offers that

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is kind of dumb or clunky, that you’d never use, that you don’t think anyone has ever used, actually. Of course, we admit that one person’s “ridiculous” is another person’s “sublime.” No two people use InDesign exactly the same way, so don’t feel too slighted if one of your favorite features is on the following list. Spoiler alert: we realize somebody somewhere is still using ciceros. But for the vast majority of us, the following ten features belong in the InDesign Hall of Lame.

of things quickly, by keeping your hands glued to the keyboard? This button defeats the purpose of one of the most powerful features in all of InDesign. What kind of evil spell is this? And even if for some reason you wanted to select a command or style from the panel with your mouse, you can click on the name of the item you want, which is a much bigger target than this tiny icon. And as if all that weren’t enough, it also appears in the Control panel! Riddikulus!

The Quick Apply button

Horizontal Cursor Position in the Control panel

While this button gets some points for looking like the scar on Harry Potter’s head, it’s far from magical. Isn’t the whole point of Quick Apply to allow you to do all kinds

How often do you need to know the precise distance from the left edge of a text frame to your cursor…to the thousandth of a point? Yeah, that’s what we thought too. Also: extra ridiculous points for being

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permanently grayed out. This feature knows it’s ridiculous and is trying to remain inconspicuous. But dude, you should’ve picked a better hiding spot.

The Color menus in the Preferences dialog box

Did we need 37 colors to choose from for our margin and column guides? Really? Especially when there’s a 38th choice called “custom” that lets you use the system color picker to precisely define any color you

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like? How many hours of productivity have been lost while some poor soul struggles to decide whether to color Smart Guides “Lipstick” or “Cute Teal”? Then just imagine what happens when this same person has to pick a Note Color…from over 60 choices. Color us unimpressed.

InDesign too? For a truly authentic retro experience, use the Terminal theme while wearing tinted glasses, bell bottoms, and a macramé vest that your mom made for you—while sipping a can of Tab. Far out!

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Etiam non utor ciceros.*

The Type > Font submenu

The Story Editor display themes

Who wouldn’t want to bring back the look and feel of a 1970s computer workstation with the “terminal” theme? Ah, those were the good old days, where something with the processing power of an iPod was as big as a house and cost about as much. Geez Adobe, while you were at it, couldn’t you have given us a punchcard interface for

Ciceros

*Even I don’t use ciceros.

You’ve already got a handy font menu right in front of you in the Control panel, so this one is little more than a “mouse” trap waiting to spring on you if you lazily move your cursor over it. Be brave, little mouse. You must approach the Type menu with no fear. It’s going to be OK. Just move smoothly and quickly past the danger. Do not hesitate! D’oh! You hesitated. Now enjoy your spinning cursor for a while.

Yes, we know that a cicero is very close in size to a modern pica, and this traditional unit of measure has a long and proud heritage in European typesetting, going all the way back to the 1400s. But this is 2013, and the desktop publishing revolution seems about as old as the French Revolution. Time to go, Cicero. The Story panel This little runt is so pathetic that it makes us feel like bullies for picking on it. But

The Story Panel, actual size

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you know when they don’t even give you a keyboard shortcut, you’re not really one of the cool panels. You’re a second-class panel at best. And seriously? One single checkbox and a field? That’s all you got? Wasn’t there a sign somewhere that said “You Must Be This Tall to Be a Panel”? It’s like a piece of a dialog box broke off and nobody remembered where it came from so they just left it alone. Sigh. We went too far, didn’t we? Poor little Story panel. Come back! Now we feel bad.

The Smooth Tool

OK, maybe this is a bit unfair too. After all, the Smooth tool is only there to try to clean

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up the mess you leave behind when you use the Pencil tool after your fourth cup of Starbucks. It’s supposed to take jittery, jagged paths and reduce the number of points and corners to make them, well, smooth. In reality, it’s just as likely to completely replace your path with an entirely new path that bears no resemblance whatsoever to the original. You can undo and try the same maneuver ten times and get ten wildly different results. After which, you can a) curse b) vow to never use the Smooth tool again and c) order a decaf.

Before smoothing

After smoothing PS: You’re welcome!

The Hyphenation Slider

This one pains us a bit, because it has a fun backstory. But this obscure little slider leaves us mystified and vexed. On one side: Better Spacing. On the other: Fewer Hyphens. But we want both better spacing and fewer hyphens! Don’t make us choose! And for sure don’t make us choose by using a slider with no numbers attached to it. How many fewer hyphen will we get? How much better spacing? Is this a joke? Does this thing do anything at all? Turns out the answers are both “yes.” Moving the slider will adjust the number of hyphens, though you might be better off using the other (numerical)

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settings in the dialog box, or just ragging a paragraph manually. And it actually is a joke, because the name of the unlabeled units on the slider are “Nigels,” after Nigel Tufnel, the lead guitar player in the film (and faux heavy metal band) Spinal Tap. Why? Because there are eleven stops along the hyphenation slider and in one memorable scene from the film, Nigel revealed that he had all his amplifiers “go to eleven” instead of ten because “it’s one louder.” The Content Grabber About the only good thing we can say about the Content Grabber is that it looks like a donut. And, well, donuts are yummy. But in terms of functionality, this item is a little…stale. OK, it does give you a clue that an object has been rotated with a little line inside the donut hole. But still… first of all, it’s a distraction, appearing whenever you mouse over an image. Second, it causes mistakes, since you often grab it accidentally and drag the image inside the frame rather

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because we care. We still love InDesign despite (or maybe even because of ) some of these quirks. And since we can’t resist, here are a few more Dis-Honorable Mentions: Convert Shape > Line Said no one ever. Type > Insert Break Character > Paragraph Return If only there was a keyboard shortcut for this…

Mmmm…content

than the frame itself. Third, it’s unnecessary, since you can easily (and intentionally) access an image to adjust its position by simply double-clicking on it, or by clicking once with the Direct Selection tool. The most important thing to know about the Content Grabber is this: View > Extras > Hide Content Grabber. Nuff said. So there you have ten of the most ridiculous features taking up space inside your favorite application. Of course, we kid

Shared Destinations Crash and burn. Gap Tool A solution in search of a problem. Fancy corner option Just Say No! Gradient Feather Tool Who let this thing in the Tools panel? Default Drop Shadow settings When you just don’t care how it looks.

n Mike Rankin is the Editor in Chief of InDesign Magazine and CreativePro.com. He’s usually not this cranky. In fact, he’s often quite pleasant.

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By Sandee Cohen

InQuestion

InQuestion is a regular column devoted to answering your questions about working with InDesign. Right Indent Tab for a nested style Q. I am trying to set a nested style to format the text after a Right Indent Tab (Figure 1). But the nested style list for markers doesn’t have a Right Indent Tab listed. I tried copying and pasting the tab character into the field, but that doesn’t work. Right now I’m manually applying the character style. But there are almost a hundred paragraphs in my monthly newsletter. Is there some way to automate this?

Figure 1: A right-indent tab is used to control where a new character style should be applied. The top example was manually formatted. But a nested style would make the process much easier.

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A. I’m surprised that there is no listing in the nested style control field for a right indent tab (Figure 2). There is one for a regular tab character, which you could use with a right tab marker jammed all the way over

Figure 2: The nested style menu lists the items that can be used to control where a nested style stops and starts, but there is no listing for a right-indent tab.

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to the end of the ruler. The problem with that approach is that if the column width changes, you’d have to redefine the paragraph style for the tab marker. However, as you already know by inserting the colon, you can paste or type your own text inside the control field. But since pasting a right-indent tab doesn’t work, you need some other way to designate it. Fortunately there is a code that you can use to insert the right-indent tab. The trick is finding what the code is.

What we need to do is find a place where you can tell InDesign to search for a right­ indent tab. That place is the Find/Change dialog box. Take a look at the list of items in the @ > Other menu, and choose Right Indent Tab (Figure 3). The code ^y appears in the field. You can now copy and paste this code into the nested style control field (Figure 4). The Find/Change dialog box also displays codes for other objects not listed in the nested styles menu. For instance, you can use the anchored object (^a) or text variable (^v) codes for more options for working with nested styles. (My thanks to David Blatner for reminding me of this technique.)

Figure 3: Use the Find/Change @ menu to find the Right Indent Tab Find what: and Change to: codes to add an end nested style here character after a right indent tab.

Figure 4: Formatting for three nested styles. A colon (:), a right-indent tab (^y), and an “end nested style here” character control where each character style is applied.

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The date that a PDF was created Q. I need to have, in the slug area for a PDF, the date that the file was created. I tried setting the Page Information in the Marks and Bleeds area of the Export PDF dialog box. But that only gives me the date and time that the version of the PDF was created — not when the document itself was created. And it’s not even in the right place. How can I insert the creation date in the slug area? A. You need a text variable. Create a text frame in your slug area, and then choose Type > Text Variables > Creation Date. This inserts an item into your text that contains the date when the file was created. You’ll notice that the creation date has a thin line around it, indicating that the text is a variable (Figure 5). This is also a clue that

Figure 5: The thin line around the date indicates that it is a single character text variable.

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the variable is considered a single character that will not break or wrap inside a frame. You can also choose Type > Text Variables > Define to create new variables or edit the ones that come with InDesign. Figure 6 shows how brackets can be inserted around the date. Splitting a table Q. I have a table that runs across two text frames and I need to separate those two halves of the table. Is there an easy way to do this?

then open the items in the panel as shown in Figure 7. Select the frame that contains the table that you want to split. Double-click the SplitStory script. The two text frames will no longer flow together, but the original table will be divided into two separate tables. Headers and footers will even be maintained across the two tables.

Rotating an emoticon Q. I have many instances of the emoticon for a wink ;-). But I’d like to have it rotated in the text. What’s the easiest way to do it?

Figure 7: The SplitStory.jsx script in the Scripts panel unlinks the text frames in a story.

Figure 8: An example of converting the text for an emoticon to an inline graphic and rotating it.

A. The answer is hidden in the Scripts panel. Choose Window > Utilities > Scripts, and

Figure 6: The Edit Text Variable dialog box lets you customize the format and text inside the variable. Here, brackets have been added around the date format.

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A. Start by highlighting the emoticon text and choosing Type > Create Outlines. This converts the text into an inline object. It may, however, be too low on the baseline of the text. If so, select the inline object using the Text tool and apply a baseline shift. Now, go up to the Control panel, and click the Rotate 90° Clockwise icon. Or choose Object > Transform > Rotate 90° CW. The emo­ticon is now rightside up (Figure 8). You can really speed up the process of converting the rest of your emoticons in

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InQuestion: Send Sandee Your Queries

your text by choosing Edit > Find/Change and typing the text characters for the emoticon in the Find what: field. Using the @ menu for the Change to: field, choose Other > Clipboard Contents, Formatted. This should look like Figure 9. Note that when you paste the formatted contents of the clipboard, the baseline shift is applied. Click Change All, and your emoticons will be converted across the document. Now thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s something to about!

where creatives go to know

Figure 9: The Find what: and Change to: fields to convert all the emoticons in a document.

n Sandee Cohen is the author of the InDesign CC Visual QuickStart Guide as well as the co-author, with Diane Burns, of the book Digital Publishing with Adobe InDesign CS6.

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By Keith Gilbert

InReview: in5

Export highly-designed InDesign layouts to HTML5 web pages in5 Ajar Productions ajarproductions.com $169 Mac and Windows, CS4–CS6 Rating:

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If you’ve ever tried to export HTML from InDesign using the familiar File > Export path, you’ve discovered the sad truth: InDesign exports your document’s content—​ the text and graphics—​but not your page design. In other words, you cannot design an HTML page in InDesign. Until now. Ajar Production’s in5 plug-in provides an easy way, albeit with some limitations, to output richly complex InDesign layouts to HTML5—​that is, in5 attempts to retain the formatting of pages as they are designed in InDesign. This HTML5 output can then be added to any website to make the content available to any audience using a web browser on a desktop or mobile device. In fact, for those who are

trying to distribute InDesign publications quickly and inexpensively, in5 may even offer a valid alternative to PDF or DPS in some cases.

Installing and Using in5 in5 is a plug-in for InDesign, which (amazingly) currently works in CS4, CS5, and CS6. (I assume a CC version will come before too long.) For this review, I tested it using InDesign CS6 on the Mac OS. Ajar Productions offers a trial version of in5 with limited-​functionality at in5.ajar.pro. When you download the plug-in, you receive an MXP file. Double-clicking on this file launches Adobe Extension Manager and installs the plug-in.

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InReview: in5

Figure 1: in5 adds these new items to the InDesign interface.

Figure 2: The Export HTML5 with in5 dialog box gives you access to all of the in5 export options.

Once it’s installed, you’ll find an Export HTML5 with in5 option in the File menu, beneath the standard Export command; a Mark as Thumbnail command in the Object menu; and an Ajar Productions folder containing four useful scripts in the Application folder in your Scripts panel (Figure 1).

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Using in5 is a breeze: You simply open a document and choose File > Export HTML5 with in5, make some choices in the Export HTML5 with in5 dialog box (Figure 2), and click OK. But first, you’ll likely want to optimize your document for screen

viewing. This might include adjusting the page size, typefaces, and type sizes to be more screen-friendly, adding some media and interactivity, and looking for items that might cause output problems before exporting the file.

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InReview: in5

What Can It Do? Because of some major differences in the rich set of precise formatting controls offered by InDesign and the amount of formatting supported by HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript, in5 offers two main controls to let you manage the fidelity of the output. These controls are divided into two categories: Page Format and Text Rendering. in5 offers two distinct types of page formats: static and liquid. Static formats display pages with fixed dimensions in the browser, with all objects in their fixed locations as viewed in InDesign. Liquid formats leverage the Liquid Layout feature of InDesign CS6 to create layouts that change dynamically to fit the browser width (Figure 3). In my testing, static formats worked well, but the Liquid format option didn’t fully support all of InDesign’s Liquid Layout options, and seemed best suited for very simple layouts. This will likely become more robust in the future, as browser support for

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Figure 3: A simple layout using the in5 Liquid page format option.

multiple-column layout and other rich formatting controls becomes more common. In static layouts, the “pages” can be arranged horizontally or vertically in a single long scroll, or so that as you swipe, the pages slide horizontally or vertically, or fade in to each other (Figure 4).

Figure 4: The different page formats provided by in5

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InReview: in5

Figure 5: The three options for outputting the text in your layouts with in5

The text that you’ve used in your layout can be output in three different ways with in5 (Figure 5): »» As images. This will preserve the exact appearance of the type, including the font, size, leading, hyphenation, etc. (Figure 6). »» As HTML with Web-Safe Fallback Fonts. This will output the text as HTML text, with the font specification set to the actual font you are using. If the user doesn’t have that font on their system, the browser will fall back to commonly used web fonts such as Georgia, Arial, Verdana, etc. »» As HTML with Local Font Embedding. If you use TrueType or OpenType fonts that are licensed for embedding on websites, in5 will copy the font outline files to

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Figure 6: An example of a static layout with text rendered as images. The appearance of both the layout and the text is preserved exactly.

the output directory. This works well with properly licensed open source fonts such as Source Sans Pro and Google Web fonts. The advantage of outputting type as HTML instead of images is that HTML type will render as crisp as possible on the user’s display, and text will be selectable and searchable. The disadvantage is that you have no control over how the text hyphenates and where line breaks occur. Some of InDesign’s rich typographic and

layout features, such as pair kerning, optical margin alignment, and span and split columns, will be lost when you export to HTML text. You can mix and match HTML text and text as images with a clever mechanism built into in5. If you output using either of the HTML text-rendering options, you can force individual text frames to output as an image by grouping them with other objects or text frames, and then choosing the

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InReview: in5

Render Groups as Images option in the in5 Export dialog box. Your static or liquid format layouts can be output three different ways: »» Web format. This will create an HTML file and related CSS and JavaScript files that can be placed on any web server or incorporated into an existing website (Figure 7). Keep in mind that these files could be opened and edited or extended further by a web developer. These

Figure 7: The set of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript files produced by in5 when choosing the Web output option

files could even also be turned into an iOS or Android app with some additional work using a tool such as Adobe PhoneGap Build. »» iPad Web App format. Like the Web format output, this format also creates a set of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript files. But these files are optimized for display on an iPad. In particular, the files will create an app-like experience on the iPad. Even though the user will be browsing a set of HTML files via Safari, the “app” can have its own icon on the user’s iPad, and the Safari browser bar will be hidden. »» Baker Format (HPUB). This will output an HPub file that can be included in a project using the Baker ebook framework. This output is particularly useful for producing periodical-style content for the iPad that will appear on the iPad Newsstand.

Supported Media InDesign allows you to place MP4 video and MP3 audio into your documents, and

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in5 fully supports playback of these video and audio formats. It also adds audio and video playback controls automatically (or you can create your own buttons in InDesign to control the playback). However, most of the video options in the InDesign Folio Overlays and Media panels (such as auto-play and looping) aren’t supported—​except for the ability to choose a poster frame. Not all browsers support direct playback of MP4 video. But a neat feature of in5 is that if you include alternate WEBM and OGY format versions of your video with the same name in the same folder as your MP4 file, the HTML generated by in5 will “fall back” to these versions when necessary, increasing compatibility with most browsers. For simple flipbook-style animation, in5 supports animated GIF files. It is a fairly simple matter to use Photoshop CS4 or later to convert short video clips to animated GIFs. However, as I discuss below, InDesign’s animation features are not yet supported.

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InReview: in5

Supported Interactivity You can create quite a range of interactive experiences using InDesign tools and exporting to HTML5 with in5, including: »» Button actions: go to destination, go to page, go to anchor, go to next/previous page, go to first page, go to next/previous state, go to state, play, play from navigation point (movies), stop, pause, stop all »» Multi-state objects and slideshows »» Hyperlinks to text anchors, pages, or URLs »» Links created automatically by the table of contents feature »» Scrollable frames created with the Folio Overlays panel »» iFrame-style HTML code pasted into InDesign from websites such as YouTube, Google Maps, etc. »» Thumbnails (small images that, when clicked, reveal a larger image floating over the other page content) »» Form elements (checkboxes, radio buttons, list boxes, combo boxes, and text fields)

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And the developer has indicated that the following features are on the roadmap for future development: »» Support for InDesign animation features created via the Animation and Timing panels »» Support for additional overlay types created with the Folio Overlays panel, such as Pan and Zoom

Who Is It For? I can see four target users for in5: 1. For people who don’t want to distribute apps through mainstream commercial channels, in5 could be a good alternative to InDesign-based app-building solutions such as Adobe Digital Publishing Suite (DPS), Mag+, App Studio, and Twixl Publisher. Like those products, in5 allows a designer to create a pixel-perfect layout in InDesign, include media and interactivity, and output the layout as a digital experience. But instead of an app that must be distributed through the Apple

App Store, the Amazon Appstore, or Google Play, in5 creates HTML files that can be placed on any website. 2. For users who need to put complex information on their websites (and aren’t code-savvy—or masochists), in5 might be just the ticket, allowing them to place highly-formatted HTML5 content on their websites instead of having to resort to PDFs. (And many interactive features, for example multi-state objects, currently don’t even work in PDF files.) 3. For those with a bit more technical orientation, in5 provides a relatively easy way to generate HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript files, use these files to build a “real app” with the Baker Framework or Adobe PhoneGap Build, and distribute the app via the Apple App Store, Amazon Appstore, Google Play, or Blackberry World. 4. For users who would like to quickly and easily create interactive buttons and forms in InDesign and then output to

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InReview: in5

HTML5 with a couple of clicks, in5 could turn InDesign into a “rapid prototyping” tool. With this setup, a user might create a quick representation of how the interactivity in a larger, more complex project would look and behave. They could then get feedback and buy-in from customers before handing the project off to a developer.

Wish List Justin Putney, one of the partners at Ajar Productions, is aggressively continuing to develop in5. Each new release adds additional capabilities. I’d imagine he has a list a mile long of features and capabilities that have been requested. Here are a few things I’d really like to see: »» Play HTML animation placed in InDesign from Adobe Edge Animate »» Auto-play video and stop video on the last frame »» Auto-play slideshows »» Output a range of pages

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Additional Scripting Goodies The four scripts included with in5 complement in5 features, but are also useful on their own. The scripts are included when you download a demo version of in5, are fully functional, and will continue to work even if you don’t purchase in5. Many people with a web programming background prefer to specify RGB colors using 6-character hexadecimal values. The Add Hex Swatch script allows you to create a swatch and add it to the InDesign swatches panel by entering a hex value. Export Hex Swatches exports an HTML file containing a table that lists the hex color value for every swatch used in the open InDesign document. Copy Fonts to Folder will copy all the fonts used in the open InDesign file to a folder that you specify. If the currently open InDesign document has more than one layout (created with the CS6 Alternate Layouts feature), the Save Alt Layouts as Documents script saves each layout as a separate InDesign file. During my testing, I encountered a few bugs and shortcomings that I reported to Ajar. None of these were show-stoppers. Most had to do with changes in appearance upon export. The biggest challenge in using in5 correctly is the rather scant documentation provided. The online help system does an adequate job of explaining most of the

options in the in5 Export dialog box, but beyond that, you’re on your own. For example, there is no comprehensive listing of which of the many features of InDesign are supported by in5 output. Do layouts created by the span and split columns feature output correctly in Liquid Format output from in5? I had to find out

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InReview: in5

via trial and error that Real World Examples they do not. Which of the Want to see what you can expect to build with in5? Check out these publications, which include inter14 slideshow options in active buttons, hyperlinks, slideshows, and video. the Folio Overlays panel are supported by in5? Some are, some aren’t. Comprehensive documentation of what is and is not supported by in5 would be very welcome. It wasn’t clear (to me at least) which options to Koskinen Long Haul Magazine Kardiologia Ilustrowana select upon export to create (University of Applied Sciences (Cardiology Illustrated, Polish) output that would display Magazine, Finnish) nicely in both a desktop browser and in both horizontal and vertical orientation on a tablet. Exchange. This is also the best place to ask prototyping tool. Its ease of use, clean outIdeally, what page size should be used for support questions, as it is monitored by put, and low cost make it a winner. this? Which output options produce the Justin himself. best result for this? Again, some documenOverall, if you need to create graphically n tation about this would be helpful. rich, highly formatted web output directly Keith Gilbert is a digital publishing consultant and On the other hand, you’ll find an active from InDesign, in5 deserves a look. It can educator, Adobe Certified Instructor, and chapter rep community of users asking and answerbe a low-cost alternative to Adobe DPS, for the Minneapolis InDesign User Group. Follow him on Twitter @gilbertconsult and at blog.gilbertconsulting.com. ing questions about in5 at the in5 Answer a replacement for PDF, or an interactive

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By Jeff Gamet

InBrief: New & Improved Products

InDesign’s change-tracking and layers tools are powerful features, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be supercharged, and this month we tip you off to add-ons that can make that happen. Plus, we found some handy newspaper templates, a few slick fonts, an easy way to make your own cloud-based file storage and sharing solution, and some streaming music to help keep you focused on your projects. Transporter Connected Data, starting at $199 filetransporter.com If you’re looking for an alternative to services like Dropbox, Sugar Sync, and Google Drive where you have physical control over the storage system, it’s time to check out Transporter. With Transporter, you own the server and the hard drive it uses, you control

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access to the system, and can set folder-byfolder permissions, share links to individual files, and if you have multiple Transporters they can synchronize their data regardless of whether or not they happen to be on the same network. The system is available without a drive, so you can provide your own, or in 1TB and 2TB configurations. Setup is easy, it’s small enough to fit on your desk, and there aren’t any monthly fees.

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InBrief: New & Improved Products

Blacklining Electronic Memory Services, $610 blacklining.com

visible in print. Blacklining handles that task for you by tracking text changes in real time: Revised text automatically gets underlined, and deleted text is tagged with strikethrough or caret characters. The InDesign add-on supports up to 98 revision levels, can include auto-updating headers detailing document changes, maintains log files for review, supports checksum values to ensure that documents haven’t been altered without your knowledge, and more.

Newsprint Templates JS Printing, free jsprinting.com/templates.php/ indesign-newsprint InDesign has its own built-in support for tracking changes in your layouts, but it doesn’t hold up as well when it comes to keeping those changes clear—​a common need in legal and financial documents where revisions and deletions need to be

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The use of templates and sample files can make creating your own designs so much easier, especially if you’re working with a fairly rigid layout like a newspaper. JS Printing has nearly 200 InDesign templates for various news layouts ready to go with front-page

headlines, tabloid-style photo spreads, multi­ column pages, classifieds, special interest, sports, and more. The templates are editable, so it’s easy to use them as a starting point for your own projects without having to deal with the tedious job of manually setting up every page design from scratch.

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InBrief: New & Improved Products

import and export, and the plug-in supports AppleScript, Java, and Visual Basic scripting for automating parts of your import and export process, too.

CtrlLayers CtrlPublishing, $199 ctrlpublishing.com

Xtags

Tags markup, too, without requiring a copy of QuarkXPress.

Fuggles TypeSETit, $20/$70 (complete family) fonts.com

Em Software, $400 emsoftware.com

Layers in InDesign make it easy to group layout elements and work with text in different languages without worrying about what impact changes will have on the overall design. CtrlLayers takes that even further by letting you import and export layers and create new documents from layers. All elements in a layer—​including text with formatting and images—​are retained during

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Adobe InDesign may be the standard for page layout, but still, occasionally we have to deal with projects that rely on tools from other companies, such as Quark’s XPress Tags. The XPress Tags markup language is a powerful tool for automating database-type layout projects such as catalogs, classified ads, and complex books. With Xtags from Em Software, you can import those projects into your InDesign layouts and retain styles, image sizes, master pages, spreads, macros, and more. Xtags works regardless of where the markup was added, so workflows that create content through scripting or databases work just fine, and it can export XPress

Fuggles is a script with a handwritten look, sporting enough variety to avoid the mechanical feel some fonts like this fall victim to. Designed by Rob Leuschke, who is well known for his typography work and as a lettering artist, Fuggles is easy to read and fun without coming across as garish or overpowering. You can mix and match the styles to create realistic handwritten text, and it even includes an all caps style that doesn’t sacrifice readability. It’s also versatile enough to hold its own for callouts and

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InBrief: New & Improved Products

decorative text as well as text blocks that need to look handwritten, all while remaining easy to read.

karabinE. Jonathan Paquette, free fonts2u.com

musicForProgramming Datassette, free musicforprogramming.net I’ve previously mentioned Coffitivity as a cool website for streaming the sounds of a coffee shop into your office to help stimulate your brain and boost productivity, but what if you’re looking for music to help keep your head on task, too? Well, that’s where musicForProgramming comes in. This site streams extended song mixes geared at keeping you mentally active without distracting you from your projects. New mixes show up on a regular basis, so there’s typically something fresh to listen to, and old mixes are always available in case you find a favorite—​and there aren’t any ads to break your concentration.

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karabinE. from designer Jonathan Paquette is a fun typeface with a rough yet clean hand-sketched look and just enough grunge for an edgy impression without coming across as amateur. It has a stenciled feel with lowercase letters, and includes a character set where every letter is a mirror version. It also includes punctuation, math symbols, and numbers, and could serve well for most headlines, callouts, and decorative text.

n Jeff Gamet is The Mac Observer’s Managing Editor, contributing editor for Design Tools Monthly, and the author of The Designer’s Guide to Mac OS X. You can find him on several podcasts including Apple Context Machine and We Have Communicators, too. For a free issue of Design Tools Monthly, visit www.design-tools.com.

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InDex: Your Key to Our Content

The InDex

Can’t find that article you saw in an earlier issue? Wondering whether we covered that obscure plug-in? Never fear, the InDex is here.

Index for issues 1 through 54, July 2004 through July 2013

MAGAZINE

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The first issue of InDesign Magazine was published in July 2004. Since then, we’ve cranked out thousands of pages on hundreds of related topics. While it’s possible to use Acrobat to simultaneously search all past issues of the magazine for one word or phrase, many readers have clamored for a formal index at the back of each issue. However, with 54 issues to account for, that’s not feasible. Instead, the InDex will live as a PDF you can download for free. If you come across a topic you want to know more about, but it’s in an issue you don’t have, you’re not out of luck. We sell back issues at www.indesignmag.com.

If the topic you’re looking for isn’t in the InDex, you have one more way to search: that PDF trick we mentioned. To make it work, all of your magazine issue PDFs must be in one folder. Open any issue in Acrobat, and then press Shift+Command+F (Shift+Ctrl+F on Windows). In the Search window that appears, be sure that you click the radio button that says “All PDF Documents in,” and in the dropdown menu below that, choose the folder in which you placed your magazine issues. You’re on your way to finding anything in any PDF!

Click here to download the InDex.

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While this PDF is for your eyes only, you can tell your friends about the great discounts they can enjoy right now: $10 Off a 1-year subscription (coupon code friend) $15 Off a 2-year subscription (coupon code friend2) Send them to www.indesignmag.com/ purchase.php INDESIGN MAGAZINEâ&#x20AC;&#x201A; 54

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