Join Jay Nelson for an in-depth discussion in this video Palette management, part of QuarkXPress 7 New Features.
In this movie, we'll look at how Quark has improved the Palette Management features in QuarkXPress 7. There are many small improvements, and several big ones to the way you manage palettes in QuarkXPress 7 that add up to a tremendous increase in efficiency. First, we'll talk about palette groups, which is what you see here on the left, a group of pallets that are docked together. We'll also talk about Palette Sets, which is a way to save a complete arrangement of palette on your window, and then instantly recall them later. Let's look at how a palette group works. This palette group on the right here has four palettes and it: Layers, Colors, Style Sheets, and Page Layout. You can expand and collapse individual palettes by simply clicking on their title bar or by clicking on the disclosure triangle.
Individual palettes can be resized and rearranged within the palette group simply by clicking and dragging. For example, if we wanted to make this Colors palette longer, you'd simply hover our mouse over the bottom edge of it, until we got the cursor to change. Then you click and drag, and you can make that palette longer. To rearrange the palettes in the palette group, you can simply drag them into the position you want them to be. So, if I click on this Layers title bar, and drag it up to here, Layers will appear up here.
To make is easier to see, I'm going to collapse these palettes, and now if I take the Colors palette, I could just drag it, see how the dark line appears there? Just drag it to the position I want it to be in. Like right there under layers, for example. Now if you want to resize the entire palette group, you simply click and drag this corner right here to make it wider or narrower, or if you have one of the palettes open, you can make the whole thing longer or shorter. Another improvement is this little double arrow up here.
Now previously, to access any of the controls within a palette, you'd have to Control-click or right-click on the palette, and then the options would appear. Now, you can also click on this little double arrow up here to get those same options. Now let's look at how you add palettes to a palette group. One easy way is to Control-click or right-click on the title bar of any of the palettes and choose the palette you want from among the list. The ones with check marks next to them indicate the ones that are already in the group.
When you let go on any one of these, it will either add or remove it from the group depending on its previous state. So if I let go on Layers, it will be removed from the group. If I let go on Picture Effects, it will be added to the group. You may have also noticed that one I Control or right-clicked on this title bar, there was an option to close this palette as well. And that's another way to close a palette or to remove it from the group. So let's do that. Now it's gone. And the final option that you may have seen when a Control-clicked on the title bar was "Detach".
Now by choosing that option, This palette becomes free-floating, and I can move it around anywhere I want. To reattach it to a palette group, Control-Click on the palette group, and choose it from the list. Style Sheets. And now it appears docked to that palette group. There is one feature I really like about QuarkXPress' palette groups, and that is when they get to be too long, in other words, there are so many items in it that they begin to extend off the bottom of the display, it resized the individual palettes to make room for the new palette that I opened. And if necessary, it'll actually close some of the palettes to make room for the new ones that you're opening or adding to the group.
I'll show you what I mean. Let's add a new one. Let's say that one. Ok, now what happened? QuarkXPress automatically collapsed both Style Sheets and Colors to make room for what it knew would be this large Index palette. Why did it close Style Sheets and Colors and not Layers or Page Layout? Because those were the two palettes that were used the longest ago. So in other words, when you expand or add a new palette to a palette group, if the palette group then will be too long to show on the display, the palettes you used the longest ago will either be resized or collapsed.
And I think that's really great because it's exactly what you would want to happen in most circumstances. Now another really nice little feature that Quark built into their palette management system is a small one, but it makes a big difference over time. The palettes snap to the edges of document windows. Snap. Snap. Just like that. They also snap to the edge of the display. Snap, snap, snap snap. Why is that good? Well, because if it didn't snap to the edge of the document window, it is really easy then to have your palettes obscuring the scrollbars.
OK, so that's it for palette groups, now let's talk about Palette Sets. Generally your palette arrangement is different depending on whether you're working on a text intensive document, or a picture intensive document, or a webpage layout, or a long document, or an advertisement. Well, Palette Sets let you save arrangements of palettes suitable for whatever purpose you commonly use them for. So let's make one. I'm going to close up these palettes. We can see that this group of palettes might be appropriate for text use. In fact, let's add a few more text related palettes such as Lists, and maybe Hyperlinks.
Ok. So now we have a palette that we like, and we want to save it as a Palette Set, so that we can call up quickly later on. To save it as a Palette Set, we go to the Window menu and choose Palette Sets. Save Palette Set As. Let's call this "Text-heavy palettes" and we can even give it a Key Command. So for example, I don't know, let's choose "4", along with all the modifier keys so that later we can call it up simply by pressing Control+Option+Cmd+Shift+4 or we can choose it from the Window menu.
So let's click Save. And now under the Window menu we have this option: Palette Sets, Text-heavy palettes. Great. So now if we change our palettes around, we can quickly get back to this exact arrangement by choosing that item from the Palette Sets menu item. So let's do that. Let's change this palette group to something that might be appropriate for working with pictures. So what will we do? Well, you might want to leave the Hyperlinks in there, but let's remove the Index, let's remove Lists, and maybe we don't need Style Sheets, because we're not going to use those with pictures.
And then we'll also add a few others for pictures, like Picture Effects, and maybe Profile Information, and maybe even Trap Information. Great. Ok, let's collapse those up. And maybe when we're working with pictures, we like to have our Tool palette somewhere else. I dunno, over here somewhere. And maybe we want to have our Measurements palette up higher. A Palette Set remembers the positions of all of your palettes, as well as which ones are docked, and which ones are freely floating.
So for that matter, let's create a freely floating one. I want my Trap Information to be detached, and let's put this somewhere else, like right down here. Now let's save this arrangement of palettes as a Palette Set. Window, Palette Sets, Save Palette Set As. We'll call this one "Picture-heavy palettes." And we'll give it a Key Command, we'll give that one maybe a "5", and we'll enable all these again just to make it simple for ourselves.
And click on Save. Ok, now if we want to switch back to our Text-heavy Palette Set, you simply choose Window, Palette Sets, Text-heavy palettes, and watch what happens. The palettes go right back to where they were when we saved that set. Ok, now we'll go back into the Picture-heavy palettes set. And you can see that all the same palettes are open, and they're in the same positions as they were when we saved the Palette Set. Now if we change our mind, and want to maybe remove the Picture Information one, or add a new one, let's add Shared Content.
And we'll leave it open like that. Now we can choose Window, Palette Sets, Save Palette Set As, and if we give it the same name, "Picture-heavy palettes", we don't have to give it the same Key Command, but we may as well. And we click Save. And it says "Oh, we already have one of those, do you want to replace it?" Say "Yup, I do want to replace it." Now, if we choose Palette Sets, Text-heavy, we get what we had before, and if we choose Palette Sets, Picture-heavy, now we get that arrangement, just like we saved it.
There is one thing I don't like about QuarkXPress 7's Palette Set feature, and that is there's no easy way to to reset the defaults. In other words, if you wanted to get back to the way QuarkXPress 7 was originally set up, there's no choice for that. Yes, you can arrange the palettes back to the way you think they ought to be and save that as a new Palette Set, but the only way to actually get the default set back is to go to QuarkXPress's Preferences folder, and remove the folder called Palette Sets. When you re-launch QuarkXPress, the palettes will appear in their default locations again.
Of course you'll lose the Palette Sets that you've created manually, but you can drag those back into the new Palette Sets folder and then when you re-launch QuarkXPress, they'll appear again. So my advice is that when you first get QuarkXPress, before you change the palettes around, create a new Palette Set, and call it Default. That way you can always get back to the default set of palettes in the way they were arranged when QuarkXPress first launched. Well, that's it for palette groups and Palette Sets. I hope you find them as handy as I do.
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