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Ron Ridley Auto Care Mall

 
  Indesign 2
System Requirements:

-Pentium II or higher
-128MB of RAM
-105MB of disk space
-Windows 98, ME, 2000 (SP2), NT 4 (SP 6), XP
-CD-ROM
-1024x768 display

Introduction

Setting new standards for professional layout and design - Adobe® InDesign® 2.0 software delivers the page layout tools you've always wanted. It integrates tightly with Adobe Photoshop®, Adobe Illustrator®, and Adobe Acrobat®. Plus, it frees you to be more creative by delivering intuitive features that reduce elaborate design tasks to a few quick steps. (www.Adobe.com)

Since this is our first look at InDesign and we didn't get a chance to review the first version, I had to do a bit of research on the product to see how it has progressed. Going back to version one, InDesign was labelled as 'Quark Killer' by many in the industry. Being a former user of Quark myself, I found this intriguing. So let's take a look and see.

Features

From what I have read about the first version was that although it did feature the ability to integrate seamlessly with Photoshop and Illustrator, it did leave Illustrator text (for example) un-editable once placed into InDesign. With the great Illustrator-like drawing tools that InDesign sports it seems that they have corrected any major ommissions such as that in this version. Strangely enough, version one didn't support text to a curved path either. This has also been added now.

If you are a regular user of Adobe's Photoshop or Illustrator you will notice that the userface is very similiar in design and set up. More so for Illustrator users as InDesign features many of the excellent drawing tools that you find in Illustrator. InDesign 2 also solves another common problem for the more technical designer – table handling. Now with InDesign 2 you can finally set up proper cell-based tables and import them from Word, Excel or any tab-delimited source. The new table handling features allow you to set all attributes of a table from row heighth to cell width.

Text transparency? Yes, that's not a typo. This is a first in print DTP, that InDesign, using layered controls has now offered up the designer transperancy settings for any object, text included. This really opens up a whole new world for DTP gurus. Also new are the Drop Shadow and Feather commands which can also be applied to any object or group including text. As you’d expect the Drop Shadow command lets you offset the effect as well as set its colour, opacity, blur and blending mode to create a photorealistic 3-D effect. The Feather command meanwhile blurs the edge of any object – again including body text – to soften it and again make it blend into its background.

From what I have read in previous versions is that InDesign, while can make some pretty creative ideas become real, had problems with the way it is handled by printers. They redesigned the print interface in this version and seem to have corrected all that and more. The one thing that is still very much noticable in the print setup is there is no print preview. Adobe, at least in my opinion, has taken that a step further and and has included a preview mode directly in InDesign. It's a simple click of a button on the toolbar and all of the invisiables are removed, leaving the user with just aview of the final print out. A single click returns all guudes and other invisibles.

InDesign is really geared toward print design, but has started the ball rolling for XML capabilities as well. Currently that feature is available as a plug-in. But full marks to Adobe for at least thinking ahead and getting a huge head start in that area of the industry.

Summary

All in all, as a first time user of InDesign I found that even some of the more intricate procedures were very easy to use. I could really get used to using InDesign in a hurry. InDesign is loaded with great new features and most of all, even the average Desktop Publisher can easily use and create documents that they could not even dream of doing before. InDesign really does make it that easy! And it is XP friendly!

If I had to pick out one flaw for this application it would be it's system requirements. This seems to be a very top heavy application. While I am not convinced InDesign is worth upgrading your systems just for this application, I would seriously reccommend this program though if you have the resources available on your computer.

Adobe makes Desktop Publishing fun again!

Review ID Number: 317
  Product Details
Adobe
Review Date: 2002-08-23
Reviewer: Brad Lawryk
Rating: 9 out of 10
 
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  Photos / Screenshots
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