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In InDesign CS4 Power Shortcuts, Adobe product manager and designer Michael Ninness reveals hundreds of tips to boost productivity, including the top 20 power shortcuts every InDesign user must know. From placing multiple images to the hidden power of Quick Apply, each one of these videos covers an important topic, and includes just the right amount of information to make anyone a true InDesign power user. InDesign users are always looking for faster, more efficient ways to do everything, and this course offers just what they're looking for. Exercise files accompany the course.
One of the most useful shortcuts that is available inside pretty much any Adobe application but especially InDesign is the contextual menus. They hold a whole variety of shortcuts, right there at your fingertips, ready for you to access at any given time. So let me give you a couple of examples of some things that are useful in these context menus and how to access them in case you don't know how to do that already. So I am going to get my Text tool. Just press T on the keyboard here. And I am going to go ahead and drag out a text frame and often I might be creating a template or an initial design. I don't actually have the copy that I am going to be using.
So I want to fill this text frame that I have just drawn with some placeholder text. I don't remember what the menu command is or how to access that command but if I right-click or Ctrl-click, I invoke the contextual menus. And right there in that text frame, when I have a text frame selected, I have Fill with Placeholder Text right there underneath my mouse to actually go ahead and choose quickly right from that convenient menu. All sorts of different hidden commands there depending on what you have selected. So it is called contextual menus because the menu changes based on your context.
If I have an image frame selected, I am going to get different menu commands in the contextual menu than if I had a text frame selected. For instance, let's say I want to put up a trademark symbol after the word Power Shortcuts and I have no idea. I keep forgetting what you actually have to hold down on your keyboard to get that hidden trademark symbol. So it just turns out InDesign makes that real easy by putting it in the contextual menu for Type. So If I right-click or Ctrl-click right there, right in the contextual menu for Type is Insert Special Character, and you've got a bunch of categories. So Symbols, and oh look right there, there is the trademark symbol.
So I don't have to worry about what secret handshake or secret keyboard shortcut is required to get that symbol on my text. I have got it right there. I am going to press the Escape key to go back to my Selection tool and now that I have the frame selected as opposed to the text, when I right-click or Ctrl-click on the frame, you will see I get different options in the contextual menu based on my context. So maybe, I want to adjust the Text Frame Options and put an inset around there. Again, if I don't remember what menu that's under or what the keyboard shortcut is. It's right there underneath my mouse just by invoking the contextual menu.
So I really encourage you to explore the context menus. If there is something you need to access and you are just not remembering where it is. It just might be one right-click away. So check them out.
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