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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.
In addition to being able to drag-and- drop from your desktop or your explorer, you can also drag-and-drop to place files from Adobe Bridge. Now Bridge, of course, is something that's installed with all the Adobe applications. It's a separate application and has a little bit more functionality than just looking at files on your desktop. There actually is a shortcut to switch to Bridge. Normally Command+O or Ctrl +O is your Open command. The Command+Option+O or Ctrl+Alt+O is your Browse in Bridge command or basically, Switch to Bridge.
So I am going to do that. Command+Option+O or Ctrl+Alt+O switches you to Adobe Bridge. If it wasn't already opened, it would've launched so it may have taken a little bit of a delay there if you are following along. And it's a toggle, so if you do Command+Option+O/Ctrl+Alt+O again, it takes you back to InDesign. So I am going to toggle back, Command +Option+O/Ctrl+Alt+O. I'm looking at Bridge. I happen to be seeing the Links for the document that we are working on here. Navigate into that folder. Here's the deal though. Bridge is taking up my entire screen.
So now, I have to do this dance of resizing the Bridge window or moving it so I can see InDesign so I can have a drag-and-drop target. Well, there is a different way to handle this. It's kind of a hidden feature. Bridge, it turns out, has something called Compact Mode and it's this little button up here in the upper right-hand corner. You can say Switch to Compact Mode. I'll go ahead and click that and what that does is that converts the Bridge window, the application window, into something that's more like a floating panel. You will see that it's a smaller size window and it actually floats above all the Adobe applications.
So if I click back in InDesign, just by clicking in the document window here, I still see Bridge doesn't move behind the InDesign application window. So in that sense, it's kind of like a floating panel. Now that's both good and bad depending on your perspective. It's great as a drag-and-drop mechanism, right, because you can now see a smaller version of Bridge and just drag-and-drop directly into InDesign. It's annoying that sometimes because you can't get rid of the Compact Mode from floating on top of your application. So you then have to convert it back to the regular mode so that you can switch to InDesign and hide Bridge.
That's why that toggle is important to switch to Bridge and then there's another toggle to switch between Compact Mode and regular mode and that toggle is Command+Return or Ctrl+Enter and that will cycle Bridge between Compact Mode and regular mode. I am just holding down Command+Return or Ctrl+Enter. So let's start from the top. Let's go back over to InDesign. I am just switching to InDesign, either using the application switcher or toggling, using the Adobe keyboard shortcut, Command+Option+O or Ctrl+Alt+O.
So we are back in InDesign, we want to drag and drop, which is the purpose of this movie, to InDesign from Bridge. So let's first switch to Bridge, Command+Option+O/Ctrl+Alt+O. Let's toggle Bridge into Compact Mode, Command+Return, or Ctrl+Enter. Now let's select the files we want. I'll go ahead and select these four season files just by holding down the Shift key and clicking between the two, beginning and end, and then drag-and-drop directly. You get this nice little icon, showing you that it's grabbing all four files and then it puts it into a loaded cursor.
Again, if you click to switch back to InDesign, now currently we are in Bridge, if you click, you're going to actually place that first file on the page. It's probably not what you want. So I am going to argue that now that the drag-and-drop has placed them into your cursor, even though you can't see it right now, because the black arrow is showing, I am going to switch out of Compact Mode, I'm still in Bridge. I can still see the Bridge icon and name up there in the left-hand corner. So what was that toggle? Command+Return or Ctrl+Enter to go back to normal mode, get out of Compact Mode, then switch back to InDesign, Command+ Option+O, Ctrl+Alt+O, and then when I switch back, I see my loaded cursor waiting for me.
So there's a little bit of a keyboard dance there. You'd actually get quite fluent in it once you've done it a few times, probably seems awkward because I am stopping and going back and forth and explaining everything. But it actually is pretty fluid. What some people do is they just put Bridge in Compact Mode for quite a while and they move it to a second monitor or you have a really large screen, we are recording in a small screen here. But you might have a much larger monitor then you can just park that off to the side and just drag-and-drop from it and that's even easier than dragging and dropping from the desktop. So there you have it, drag-and-drop from Bridge with a couple of nuances there to control the experience to your liking.
It's a very, very handy way to work back and forth between placing lots of files into InDesign.
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