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If you want to develop into a true InDesign power user, you have to start memorizing some of the keyboard shortcuts. Not all of them, of course, but the ones that are most relevant to you. It turns out that if there's a command that you use all the time, that either has a confusing keyboard shortcut that you can never remember or just doesn't have a keyboard shortcut at all. You can actually do something about it. Almost, all the Adobe applications now have the ability to customize your keyboard shortcuts. To do it, let's get into InDesign here, under the Edit menu, towards the bottom is Keyboard Shortcuts.
You can find what keyboard shortcut that menu command has and either change it or assign it to something new or add one if it doesn't even have one. So, for instance, I've memorized the keyboard shortcut for the Keyboard Shortcut Editor. In Photoshop that's Command+Option+ Shift+K or Ctrl+Alt+Shift+K on Windows. It turns out InDesign doesn't have a keyboard shortcut for the Keyboard Shortcut Editor. So, as an example let's create one. I am going to click the New Set button because you can't actually modify the default set. As matter of fact, anything you see in brackets inside InDesign you typically can't edit or at a minimum can't delete it.
So I am going to click New Set, I'll go ahead and called it Michael, and then the keyboard shortcuts are organized by menu. So, I happen to know that the Keyboard Shortcut command is under the Edit menu. So, I am going to switch that and than I will just scroll through this list, until I find the Keyboard Shortcuts command and there it is. To add a keyboard shortcut to it, it'll list any existing shortcut. Of course, this one is empty. So I am going to click in the New Shortcut field and I am just going to hold down the keys that I would want to use to assign this keyboard shortcut to the menu command.
So Command+Option+Shift+K, since I am on the Mac here, just enter right into that field. It does tell you, "hey, this is already assigned to something else," but I don't care about this particular shortcut. So, I am going to go ahead and overwride that by clicking the Assign button. Let's go and see if it works. I am going to go ahead and click OK and now I want to add another custom keyboard shortcut to something else, so I am going to hold down my new keyboard shortcut, Command+Option+Shift+K. Bingo! I am right where I want to be because I was able to use my custom shortcut. I am going to add a more practical keyboard shortcut and under Type menu, a command I use all the time is Fill with Placeholder Text but it doesn't have a keyboard shortcut.
So, I am going to go ahead and give it one. I am going to go ahead and use the Control key. On the Mac, I have one modifier key, so I am just going to assign this Ctrl+H and you can see that it's not being used for anything else. Great! If you're following along, you can assign whatever shortcut you want. I am going to go ahead and click the Assign button and then click OK. And now if I create a text frame, just click and drag and I want to fill that with placeholder text, Ctrl+H, and I have got what I want. So, great examples of how easy it is to create custom keyboard shortcuts.
I highly encourage you to customize InDesign to your liking by adding just the keyboard shortcuts that matter to you and get it just the way you like it.
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