Join Anne-Marie Concepción for an in-depth discussion in this video Getting familiar with the new interface, part of InDesign CS4 New Features.
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Like the rest of the Creative Suite 4 programs, the look and feel of InDesign CS4's interface has been upgraded to make it easier to work with and more flexible. There are a few completely new features too that I think you'll find interesting. So, let's start with a close look at the new Application Bar and Application Frame. We are on the Macintosh right now, looking at the default installation of InDesign CS4 with no document windows open. The Application Bar appears by default on both Macintosh and Windows and it's this extra horizontal panel above the Control panel, the one that we all already are familiar with. The Application Bar, like the Control panel, contains what Adobe is calling widgets that have pulldown menus that give us quick access to things that we would normally get from the regular menus at the top. I'll be looking at those in details in a bit. It has a dropdown list of workspaces and the fields where you can search for online help.
Before we get into any of those details, this is not look like how it looks on Windows. On Windows, there is one other element that is always on by default and that's called the Application Frame and Windows users are used to that. In Windows, when you run a program, you cannot see through the program to stuff on our desktop like here, you can see the exercise files folder. In CS4, Adobe did add the Application Frame concept to Macintosh but they didn't try to on by default, so that it would not be such a jarring change from CS3.
I'm going to turn on the Application Frame and you can follow along too. Just go the Window menu and at the bottom, you'll see that there is a checkmark next to Application Bar because it's turned on and we are going to choose Application Frame as well. Now, in Windows, neither one of these menu items are there because they are always turned on by default and you can't turn them off. As soon as you turned on the Application Frame, you can see that our desktop disappears and it's just a gray background. It's actually kind of neat. If you put your cursor at the lower right- hand corner, it turns into a double-headed cursor and you can drag it to resize the Application Frame.
Let's say that you want to drag some copy from a Microsoft Word document that's opened in the background and drop it into a Document window in InDesign, you can still do that if you want. Otherwise, you can click the Maximize button at the upper left to obscure all the other open windows of other documents and items on the desktop. Now, let's open up the document and take a look at what these widgets are for in the Application Bar. Go to File > Open and navigate to your chapter 01 folder in your exercise folder. Just open up Bliss_Magazine. Here is another new feature that the documents open by default in tabbed view and we'll be looking at tabbed windows and working with multiple tabbed windows in dept in a next video.
But notice that if you don't want to have it as a tab, you can drag the tab downward and it turns into a regular floating window. If you drag the title bar of a floating window back up, it sort of just get that little blue area right below the Control panel, it docks it. There is now a document dock just like there is a panel dock. In previous versions of InDesign, we have a document dock as well. Now that we have a document open, we can see some of these widgets happening. So, in the Application Bar there is a shortcut for to jump to Bridge. Now, it's been moved away from the Control panel and it's now in the Application Bar.
We have Zoom Level and when you have the Application Bar showing on the Macintosh when it's turned on, you'll notice that the Zoom Level has gone from the lower left of the window. But if we hide the Application Bar on the Macintosh then it reappears. Let's do that right now. Go to the Window menu and you'll note that actually, we can't turn off the Application Bar until we turn off the Application Frame. Now again, Windows users, just watching enjoy, okay because you don't have either one of these options in Windows; they are always on by default. So, we are going to select Application Frames to turn it off. It automatically turns the Window into a floating window but now, we can go for a second trip up to the Window menu and choose Application Bar to turn that off and now, it looks very CS3 like, with their regular Control panel going across the top and now, we have the view scale available once again at the bottom left of the window.
But I happen to like both the Application Bar and the Application Frame and that's how about I'll be working throughout the rest of this video tutorial series with both of these turned on, on the Mac and also, once you get used to this on the Mac then it's very simple to jump to Windows. Other widgets that are available in the Application Bar; this first one is View option. So, instead of always having to go to the View menu, you can choose whether or not you want Frame Edges showing or hiding and Rulers and Guides. Smart Guides is a New CS4 Feature that I will be talking about later on. And I love this, Hidden Characters. You can turn Hidden Characters on and off right from the App Bar instead of having to remember, where is it? Oh yeah, it's in the top menu.
To the right of that, we have Screen Mode so you can change from Normal to Preview, Bleed, and Slug and so on. You can still do that from the bottom of the Tools panel but sometimes, it's just easier to have it right up there. And then to the right of that, there is a new widget called Arrange Documents that has some of the same commands as before as far as creating a new window and the Ranging window, but these are all fun ways to arrange multiple windows that I'll be talking about in the next video. These commands as I said are still available from the View menu and from the Window menu. So, if you want to turn Grids & Guides on and off, from the View menu you can and here, they do show the keyboard shortcuts; they don't show them in the Application Bar.
Then we have a dropdown menu of workspaces with some new workspaces they have added that we'll be going through in a bit and then a Find field. So, if I type something in here that has to do with Adobe InDesign, like say, for example, indent, and press Return or Enter, it immediately opens up the default browser and does a Live Web Search not just of the Adobe site or of the online help documents, but actually just about anywhere. So, here is an Adobe hit but here is one from CreativeTechs, a wonderful company on the West Coast. Here is one right from the lynda.com, it's the third hit under indent. We have Adobe LiveDocs right here, which is the online help that people can come in on. That's not new; that was available in CS3 as well.
And down here, look at that, there is InDesignSecrets.com, that's the blog that I co-host with David Blatner. Actually, this is a post that I wrote myself, Create Perfectly - Curved Hanging Indents. And so that's kind of interesting field up there and a very handy way to quickly find information. Just a couple more things that I want to show you; down here on the left, notice that the Structure button is gone, all we have here is a page pop-up menu. So, the button that used to open up the Structure panel for XML is no longer. The only way to view that is to go up to the View menu, go to Structure and choose Show Structure or use the keyboard shortcut. Or you can still close it by double-clicking on that little device or bar there.
We have this readout that I'm not going to beginning to the very end but you should know that this is one of the coolest new features called Live Preflight that you tell it what to check for and it's just constantly checking, telling you how many errors in the current document there are and has a pop-up menu that allows you to go to the Preflight panel to search for them and fix them and so on. Here is the Reveal pop-up menu that used to have more commands with Version Q but now, it is just very handy to Reveal in Finder or if you are in Windows, it will say, Reveal in Explore and Reveal in Bridge.
So, the Application Frame is very cool. Not new for Windows users; that's how Windows works in general. But for Mac users, it presents an interesting option that I encourage you to try out. Remember though, it's not turned on by default. So, you'll have to choose it from the Window menu to enable it. Remember, at the bottom. But you can do that with no documents open. If I close this and I have it turned on and I quit InDesign and I started again, that will be the Application Default. What is new for InDesign users of any platform persuasion though is the Application Bar going across the top and the tabbed windows Let's take a closer look at working with multiple windows and new ways to arrange and navigate them in the next video.
- Using the new workspaces, panels, and navigation options
- Working with Smart Guides, the cursor, and text reflow
- Placing images with Auto-Fit and the contact sheet cascade
- Formatting text with dynamic GREP helpers
- Refining layouts with live preflight
- Finding support in Community Help