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Software Review: Adobe Master Collection – InDesign CS5 from Adobe Systems

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This is the sixth of a series of reviews that will cover what is contained in the Adobe Creative Suite 5 (CS5) Master Collection. When Adobe released CS5 this year, they not only released single version products, but also five separate suites of products. They are Design Premium, Design Standard, Web Premium, Production Premium, and Master Collection. You can go online to compare what is contained in each version. The goal of this series it to define what each product does and provide information of what the new version brings to the table.

First introduced in 1999, Adobe InDesign CS5 is the publishing platform of the creative suite that is targeted at designers, publishers and those whose job it is to design professional layouts including periodical publications, posters, print media, and more.

 InDesign CS5

In effect, InDesign is a page-composition program that lets you take a variety of elements from different sources and combine them to make multipage documents. Once you have all of the objects together, InDesign will let you put them together on the page to create your composition. While you can also create single page documents, InDesign is really meant to create larger multipage compositions. Many people use InDesign to create for standard print, it can be just as useful for electronic delivery via PDF, Web page generation, and mobile devices.

So What is New with InDesign CS5?
• Interactive documents – and presentations will help you to engage and inform readers and clients with documents and presentations that integrate interactivity, animation, sound, and video. By creating interactivity directly in InDesign you will also reduce the cost and time to develop rich media using other application. New intuitive panels like the Animation, Object States, and Timing panels help you add rich media to your page layouts much easier than ever before.

• Object selection and editing – gives you the ability to perform repetitive layout tasks much more efficiently in InDesign CS5. Numerous improvements can help make tasks such as aligning and distributing objects or customizing frame corners faster and easier. These include a Gap tool to adjust the white space between objects, a Live Corner Effects to change the shape of a frame, and the ability to make multiple transformations with the Content Grabber.

• Adobe CS Review – integration now gives you a more accelerated workflow and will allow you to streamline your review process through an online service that integrates with InDesign CS5. With the use of CS Review, you can create and share documents for online review from within InDesign. Colleagues and clients can view your document online and add comments with easy-to-use annotation tools directly in their browsers. All comments are automatically displayed in InDesign CS5, within the context of your page layout.

 InDesign CS5

• Multiple page sizes – will allow you to simplify your file management tasks by creating pages of different sizes all within in a single document. Whether you’re designing marketing collateral, brand identity deliverables, or a magazine layout with complex folds, or keeping all of a project’s assets in the same file this will shorten design and production time.

• Track text changes – can let you get to your final copy faster now that you can track text changes directly in your InDesign document. You can write, edit, and mark up text in InDesign with no need to import separate text files. Through the enabling of Track Changes, InDesign will keep track of additions, revisions, and deletions in your documents. The page layout remains uncluttered and to see the changes you simply open the Story Editor. There, you can accept or reject changes using options similar to those in popular word-processing applications. InDesign automatically assigns a different color for changes made by each user, so you can easily see who’s made the edits.

About T. Michael Testi

Photographer, writer, software engineer, educator, and maker of fine images.