Join David Rivers for an in-depth discussion in this video Touring the UI, part of Visio 2013 Essential Training.
- Well, it's time now to start actually using Visio and we'll begin by getting you comfortable in your surroundings taking a quick tour of the different user interfaces you'll see when launching Visio. So, if you're going to follow along with me, go ahead and launch it. You'll see something like what I see here. Over on the left hand side of this start screen, you'll see any drawings or diagrams that you may have worked with recently. I have a couple here that I've worked with. You can see one is on my OneDrive, the other, in my Exercise Files, and if you've never used Visio before, you'll see no recent files showing up on this list but you will see a link to Open Other Drawings.
So if you have them stored on your hard drive, on a network drive, on your OneDrive for example, here's where you go to browse to those other drawings to open them up and continue working on them. If you haven't created any drawings, however, you move over to this right hand side of the screen where you're going to see options for creating new diagrams. Right here at the top is a category called Basic Diagram. If you wanted to create something very basic, you would go here, you'll see some different options. If you want to start from scratch and have nothing at your fingertips, you just want to start right with a blank canvas, you would go to Blank Drawing.
There is a Welcome to Visio tour that you can take and then we get into some other categories. Maybe you want to create a basic flowchart or maybe something like a cross functional flowchart. You can see different categories for those. There's an org chart there, detailed network diagrams, and you can scroll down to see all of the different categories you have at your disposal. Now if you're on the standard versus the professional, you'll see a different list. But when you're ready to create something new, you go to one of these categories to get a head start.
Now just before we do that, check out at the very top. If you want to search for specific templates, there is a search field at the top that allows you to search for online templates. Of course, you need to be connected to the Internet. Just below that, you'll see some suggested searches. If you want to create a flowchart, you could select flowcharts from here and get access to online templates based on flowcharts. There's Business, Floor Plans, et cetera. In the top right hand corner, if you're logged in to your Microsoft account, you'll see your credentials up here, your name, your e-mail, you can switch accounts here.
If you have a picture, you'll see it as well. And now we're ready to create something new. So let's go to Basic Flowchart and give it a click. Opens up a dialogue box with a diagram of a basic flowchart and over here, some information on the types of flowcharts you can create with this basic option. You can also choose the units of measure: US units versus metric. When you're ready to click Create, give it a click and you'll be creating a brand, new drawing. So as you can see, we do start with a blank canvas.
What you're going to see though, based on the template you selected, appears over here on the left hand side and we'll get to that in a moment. First though, let's get comfortable in our surroundings. If you've used any Microsoft Office application, you'll be familiar with this layout with your title bar at the top where you'll see the name of your drawing, and if it hasn't been saved, it'll be Drawing and the number. Over here on the top left hand corner, your quick access toolbar with quick access to commonly used commands: save, undo. You can see we can restore from here or repeat.
We also have a button that does not normally appear here by default. It allows you to switch between mouse mode and touch mode. And I'll be showing you how to customize this quick access toolbar a little later on in this chapter. You also have this little drop down that allows you to customize your quick access toolbar. So if there are buttons you don't use, they can be removed and if there are others you would like to see there, they can be added. Talk about that a little later on. In the top right hand corner, we have buttons for online help. There's the minimize, restore, and close buttons for closing up Visio altogether.
Right below that, again if you're logged in, you'll see some credentials here where you can choose to sign out and sign in with a different account if you need to. And you'll see another close button for closing the window you're working on or the drawing. Then, we come across the ribbon. The ribbon interface has a number of different tabs including this very first tab labeled File. And this takes us to a different view altogether. Click File and you'll switch to what's known as backstage view. In backstage view, we can do things behind the scenes. We can get information, as you can see, with Info selected here at the top, about our drawing.
There's properties, dates, and a number of options for working with this file. Then you'll notice that we have options for creating new drawings: opening, saving, printing, sharing, and exporting. Here's where we go to close this up if we wanted to and access our account settings as well as our Visio options from here. When we're done with backstage view, we click the back button to go back to our previous view. And this is where we're going to do our work. So I mentioned earlier there are two main sections. Over here on the left hand side, under the Shapes window, you're going to see Stencils.
Think back to the days of that plastic sheet with all the little cutouts and then you take your pencil and trace the different shapes. That's where this name comes from. And because we chose to get a head start with a basic flowchart, we're going to see stencils related to flowchart shapes. There they are down below. So, we can select these by clicking and dragging them on to our drawing area. So, click and drag Process over. Click and drag Decision over. As you move it around, you'll see helpful guides for spacing and alignment.
And that's all there is to starting your new drawing. This is the area where you're going to do your work, the drawing area. You'll see a ruler by default. There are other options we'll talk about a little bit later on. But the ruler allows you to line things up if you wanted to. Down below your current working or drawing area, you'll see tabs for different pages. So you can have multiple pages. We have a single page called Page 1 but we can click the plus sign if we wanted to insert new pages. We can even rename those pages. Again, we'll talk about this drawing area in detail a little bit later on in this chapter.
Down in the bottom right hand corner, options for zooming and fitting the page, et cetera. We have scroll bars for scrolling around our drawings. And we'll leave this on our screen as we move on to the next movie in this chapter where we'll dig a little bit deeper into this user interface to get you totally comfortable in the Visio 2013 environment.
Author David Rivers helps you explore the Visio interface, from working with shapes, creating basic diagrams, and connecting diagrams to adding objects (text, graphics, and links), styling diagrams with themes, and formatting shapes, pictures, and text. The final chapters concentrate on creating different types of projects with Visio: org charts and brainstorming diagrams, timelines, calendars, floor plans, and prototypes.
- Getting started with the Visio interface
- Modifying the Ribbon and Quick Access toolbar
- Using SmartShapes
- Connecting shapes
- Inserting text, pages, graphics, containers, and hyperlinks
- Formatting objects and text
- Showing and hiding elements
- Printing and publishing diagrams
- Creating layers
- Working with themes
- Building org charts, timelines, calendars, floor plans, and prototypes