Recent InDesign Posts

August 7, 2005

Another training day

I know it is almost time for a new school year when we have our annual training session. It is time to train all the new people on how to use InDesign and our work flow to put The BG News together every day.

This time went better then others. In the past year I have been doing a lot to make the News' staff job a lot easier. Last year I overhauled out style guide, as well as supplement the InDesign library with even more drag-and-drop parts.

I still have a list of things to edit before we start classes in three weeks.

August 3, 2005

Solve InDesign type trouble

Thanks to its elegantly designed text controls, Adobe InDesign (CS and CS2) offers endless possibilities for perfecting your type. But not all of its features are obvious.
Source: MacCentral

Macworld posted an excerpt from Adobe InDesign CS/CS2 Breakthroughs. It's a good read, I might actually buy the book.

July 26, 2005

First Look at an Impressive QuarkXPress 7.0

Will XPress 7.0 be the upgrade that puts Quark back on top? Gene Gable spent two days at Quark's Denver headquarters to find out and emerged with this exclusive report.
Source: Creative Pro

It looks like Quark finally has some of the features that InDesign CS2 has. For Quark customers, I hear a cry of "Its about time!" This stuff was supposed to be in version 5 after all. At least that is what they told us way back then.

June 24, 2005

Macworld reviews Adobe CS2

Macworld recently reviewed Adobe Photoshop (Adobe talks), Illustrator (Adobe talks), InDesign (Adobe talks), and GoLive (Adobe talks), all part of the CS2 suite. Macworld has also posted an "Adobe talks" series that goes further into the new Creative Suite, this series has a good bit of information.

Today they added a review of Adobe Bridge and a piece on Bridge and VersionCue.

February 5, 2005

IQue Server 4 offers new editorial capabilities

Harris & Baseview on Friday released IQue Server 4.0, an editorial solution that includes a MySQL database, a JBoss application server and a cross-platform NewsEditPro IQue client.
Source: MacCentral

We do not use IQue at The BG News, it simply costs to much. We use the non-IQue version of their NewsEdit Pro editorial software. It is great that they finally ported IQue over to MySQL and JBoss though. The previous version uses FoxPro and I have, unfortunately, had *fun* experiences with that. It should also be a lot more stable under MySQL and JBoss, though if you know how stable NEP and iQue are, you are not holding your breath. We can all hope, right?

The more important change here is that you can run MySQL and Java under Mac OS X very well. This will allow a lot of small and medium sized newspapers that use Harris/Baseview's workflow to upgrade to OS X. I know if I was running IQue Server, I would not want to be running them under Mac OS 9.

September 22, 2004

Solving PostScript errors

Solving PostScript errors is never fun. But I have done my fair share at the newspapers I have worked for. Here is a great list of solutions to the problems. I wish I had found this earlier, it could have helped! There are some great explanations here.

September 6, 2004

Adobe's InDesign and XML

The process of formatting and typesetting documents has come a long way in the relatively short span of time that modern computers have been around; the process has typically revolved around formatting scientific or technical documents using a variety of command-line tools. However, the latest version of Adobe's page-layout application, InDesign, integrates XML files into its visually oriented publishing workflow. Source:

August 30, 2004

EasyHistoryCS and MultiDoCS

It was just brought to my attention that there is a history palette plugin for InDesign CS. They also have a free undo multiple/ redo multiple plugin, MultiDoCS. The EasyHistoryCS plugin costs $19 until Sept. 1st, 2004. After that it is $39, which is still well worth your money. The EasyHistoryCS palette works just like the Photoshop History palette does, it even creates snapshots of your layout as in Photoshop. Worth checking out for sure! It looks like 65 Bit Software has other nice plugins as well, none of which I would need though. I have got to show this EasyHistoryCS plugin to Paul at Unigraphics, he is going to love this. On a related note, I am about to move Unigraphics to OS X. After seeing how nice and smooth things run in the newsroom, they cannot wait to start using OS X. That and they are chomping at the bit to upgrade from InDesign 2 to InDesign CS, which is more then understandable.

July 17, 2004

Suitcase XI does not like InDesign CS

I do not know if this problem effects the Windows versions of this software, I hope it doesn't because this is a not-so-fun problem. Without getting into the font management app war, my favorite font management app is Suitcase. We have Suitcase XI (11) and it is updated to 11.0.2, the latest version at this writing. We are running InDesign CS 3.0.1 at this time. The short and (not so) sweet of it: Suitcase XI causes InDesign CS crash when you create a new document. The long version: If the Suitcase auto-activation plugin is active in InDesign, InDesign will crash when you create a new document. Now if you start a document from a template or open an existing InDesign or Quark file, then InDesign will not crash. The easy fix is to take that auto-activation plugin out of the InDesign plugin folder. That is not the solution however. I do not know what the solution is right now. Since we have an investment in both InDesign and Suitcase my next step will be to call Extensis. I have read enough online to understand that it is a Suitcase problem. I for one never liked relying on font management software to turn on fonts I need for a project, but it is a really nice feature.

July 14, 2004

Acrobat 6 and InDesign CS PDF

InDesign CS can PDF files just as easily as Distiller 6 can. We have a .joboptions file we use in Distiller for The BG News. For some reason, InDesign CS will not import this .joboptions file. I have to create a new "Acrobat InDesign PDF Export Presets" file. Why Acrobat 6 and InDesign CS do not use the same format is beyond me. The settings in both files are the same. The dialogs to setup these options in both applications are the same. I was able to import my Acrobat 5 .joboptions file into Acrobat 6. I would have thought I could just import my Acrobat 6 .joboptions file into InDesign CS. Nope.

July 9, 2004

Hearst Magazines Adopt Adobe's Publishing Platform

SAN JOSE, Calif. — July 6, 2004 — Adobe Systems Incorporated (NASDAQ: ADBE) today announced that Hearst Magazines, one of the world's largest magazine publishers with 18 U.S. titles and more than 137 international editions, has adopted the Adobe® Creative Suite, which includes Adobe InDesign® CS software, as its standard publishing solution. For Hearst, a color-managed, all-digital internal prepress and publishing workflow based on the Adobe InDesign CS and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) has resulted in reduced design and production time, quality enhancements, and substantial cost savings. Source: Adobe PR I always like hearing of newspaper and magazines moving to InDesign :)

June 10, 2004

Jazbox 3 adds InDesign, InCopy CS support

Harris & Baseview has announced that it will debut Jazbox 3.0 at the NEXPO newspaper technology trade show being held in Washington, DC June 19-22. The new version of the company's flagship content syndication system adds support for Adobe's InDesign and InCopy CS and features OnePlan, a tool for managing budgets and resources. In addition, version 3.0 brings Mac OS X compatibility to the Jazbox page design client, allowing page designers to work on Macs even when reporters and editors are using Windows computers. Harris & Baseview has not released pricing nor system requirements for the new application yet. Source: MacCentral I saw this in action at an Adobe - Baseview dog and pony show three months ago. At that time they would not even tell me they had an OS X version in the works, I wish they had because that could have changed my suggestion. This system is very nice. It lets multiple people have the same layout(s) open. It lets you jump text over multiple documents - something I really wish could be done. The database backend to this system looks really great. There is a reason they did not give MacCentral a price. You will not find prices on the Harris/Baseview site either. It is really expensive. But its also really worth it for those who need it. I was very impressed with the presentation, even if it was done on Windows. I did not understand why they did not have an OS X version (I asked at the show) since most newspapers are Mac based.

June 9, 2004

Blue World InDesign Talk List

InDesign does the applying of styles very efficiently: Click on a style applies the style to a paragraph without removing local styling (ie bold, italic, etc) Option-Click on the style removes local styling without removing Character Styles. Shift-Option-Click on the style removes all local styling and Character Styles. I found this out today thanks to being on the Blue World InDesign list. This list is great. Since I am new to InDesign, and I am going to need to know how to use it to train the designers of The BG News, I need all the help I can get. On a related note, I am learning InDesign quickly. It is so much nicer to use then Quark. Now whenever I have to use Quark I just cringe (even more so then before).

May 12, 2004

Upgrading Baseview Software

The first step of the transition ot InDesign and OS X has come to pass. Today we got our upgrade package of Baseview software. Baseview makes software for newspapers, we use Baseview software for editorial, production, and advertising. We are upgrading editorial and production this summer. Upgrading advertising would cost too much, as we would also need to get new computers to be able to run Mac OS X. Last summer we got new eMacs and a dual 2 Ghz G5 for production and editorial. This summer we are upgrading the software, Baseview and Adobe being the two components of that. We are also doing a cross-grade from Quark Xtentions to InDesign plugins. There are two plugins we use- DragIn and CopyTools. I have never used these before, but as I saw in Chicago these plugins look and act like their Quark counterparts DragX and QTools. We also use a MS Word like text editor called NewsEdit Pro that works with InDesign (in the same way that InCopy CS works with InDesign, well sorta). We use a Xtension called ClassFlow to flow our classifieds. Baseview have not ported this to InDesign yet (Grrrr) so we will still need to do the classifieds in Quark 4 and OS 9 somehow. This is something that we need to figure out how to handle until we get a native InDesign version of ClassFlow. Hurry up Baseview! WireManager is the last application we use in the daily production of the newspaper. WireManager grabs the AP news from the satellite rack down the hall, through a serial connection of all things! Currently the computer WireManager runs on is a PowerMac 7100/66. I remember when those computers were blazing fast! Thanks to the University's Desktop Replacement Program, I can replace that 7100/66 with an iMac that can handle OS X. I need the OS X version of WireManager because of our move to InDesign (I was hoping we could just use our OS 9 version of WireManager, but alas, things are never that easy). We have 20 seats ordered of Adobe Creative Suite, which is for BG News, Obsidian, Gavel, Miscellany, Unigraphics, and Production. It sure will be nice having CS everything at all desks. When that arrives I will get to have fun learning how to use the new Baseview plugins for InDesign. Then also comes creating InDesign templates, styles, and libraries out of all our Quark templates, styles, and libraries. Thats a lot of work! Paul and I get to tackle that job soon.

March 26, 2004

InDesign CS 3.0.1 update released

Adobe recently put out an update to their print publishing tool InDesign CS (Creative Suite) that brings the application to version 3.0.1. The upgrade fixes a number of issues, including broken hyperlinks within a book after it has been exported to a PDF file, imprecise constraint when shift-dragging an anchor point on a page item, and more. Source: MacCentral For the first time that I have noticed, you download the updater through InDesign. There is an Update app not unlike the Software Update app in OS X.

March 10, 2004

Trip to Chicago

Monday and Tuesday I was in Chicago. I like visiting Chicago, but I don't think living or working their is my cup of tea. It is one of my favorite places to visit though. Monday night I got to go out with a friend who is working in Chicago right now. It was great to sit in a bar and BS all night. Tuesday Paul and I went to a full day workshop put on by Baseview and Adobe. But that is for another post. The best part of the show was the Jazzbox demo that worked with InDesign CS and InCopy CS. Jazzbox is a Baseview product, Windows only right now, it allows for multiple people to work on the same layout, double-truck even, as well as jump stories between separate documents. Very cool! Too bad we cant use it (Windows) or afford it (its really expensive). The second half of the show was a presentation by Russel Viers, an Adobe Certified Trainer. The topic was Quark to InDesign migration, and he was really funny. He did show a number of things that I did not know how to do, or how easy to do, in InDesign. He was very informative. He even had giveaways. Including some LOTR games, and 2 full copies of the Adobe CS suite.

February 25, 2004

Switching to InDesign?

Here at Student Publications only Unigraphics has switched to InDesign. And they love it. This is partially due to the fact that they hate Quark of course. But they love using InDesign for all their projects. This might be changing. The BG News might be moving to InDesign. Which I would dearly love as well. I would also love moving to OS X so I can stop supporting OS 9, which is getting to be a pain since I do not actively use it. On March 9th Baseview and Adobe are putting on a dog and pony show in Chicago to showcase InDesign CS, InCopy CS, and NewsEdit Pro (thats a Baseview app). Paul and I will be there to see what they have to show. Unfortunately we already purchased Quark 6, because we were originally going to start using OS X last year. Adobe's volume licensing is really nice, and is better then Quark's educational pricing, but we already own Quark 6. So moving to InDesign would be $2000 down the drain. We shall see. I wish the Baseview upgrade (to OS X native versions) was not so high. But they can charge whatever they want, they are similar to M$ in that respect.

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