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Old 03-18-2005, 01:03 PM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 10,478
Default IDCS PageMaker edition

I promised KT that I'd post a copy of the review I did of IDCS PageMaker editon that was published in PC Graphics Report (March 2004, http://pcgraphicsreport.com/ ):

"We PageMaker users are being enticed by Adobe to abandon the venerable (ok, old and creaky) software and join the ranks of InDesign users with the release of InDesign CS PageMaker Edition ($349.00 directly from Adobe to a low of $284.00 from an online retailer). This is InDesign CS (version 3.0 of InDesign) with the addition of a separately installed PageMaker Plug-in.

InDesign CS is installed first. Color Management users beware! A shortcut to Adobe Gamma Loader is placed in C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Startup. I’d suggest you delete the shortcut before rebooting or you may end up with monitor calibration problems. I can’t comment on the Total Training video for InDesign CS, as again Adobe has failed to require closed captioning for those of us who are hearing impaired or deaf.

When InDesign CS has been successfuly installed, you may then install the PageMaker Plug-in. While there are are eight potentially useful tools available (you can choose which, if any, of the tools to be installed), perhaps the most important aspect of the Plug-in is the wealth of information added to the Help function comparing and contrasting InDesign and PageMaker which should go a long way to easing the transition from PageMaker to InDesign.

When you open InDesign CS PageMaker Edition for the first time, the PageMaker Plug-in Pack window is open in the middle of the pasteboard with six options displayed. There is also a checkbox to toggle this window on/off at startup. After your first browse, I’d suggested turning it off as all of the options are available via the regular menus.

Perhaps the most potentially useful of the options is “Tutorials” which, when clicked, will open a browser window with Help set to a list of nine tutorials. Adobe might have better chosen to place first “Making the Switch from PageMaker to InDesign” (the fourth item from the bottom of the Help Contents list on the left hand side of the Help screen). The topics for this item compare and contrast InDesign and PageMaker and give one a feel for what assumptions not to make about how things work.

Under the Plugin Pack window you’ll see the PageMaker Plug-in Pack Toolbar (icons for “new document”, “open”, “save”, “print”, “increase font size”, etc.). As the Toolbar is sitting in the middle of the workarea, the first thing you want to do is to dock it (top, bottom or side of the workarea) using the first icon on the left of the Toolbar (kind of looks like a vertical ruler).

While there is much that is familiar in the InDesign workarea, there are new and useful approaches to the PageMaker way. The Control Palette, rather than floating is docked at the top of the screen (it can float, dock at the bottom or hidden). As in PageMaker, the options displayed vary based on what you are doing. The floating Tools palette is displayed to the left of the workarea as in PageMaker, but the other palettes are docked and only partially visible on the right hand portion of the screen. Click on a tab and the palette flies out for use. I quickly got a crick in my neck trying to read the tab names sideways and discovered that I could create my own own floating palette (or set of palettes) by dragging the palette(s) out from the docking area. You can roll up a floating palette by clicking on the “-“ in the upper right hand corner of the palette. This review is too brief to outline what InDesign offers that PageMaker doesn’t but one of the best to my mind is virtually unlimited Undo’s and the most annoying is the lack of a recently opened files command in the File menu if one has used TweakUI to disable “Recent Files” (“IE” tab, enable both “Add new documents to Documents on Start Menu” and “Show Documents on Start Menu” to make “Open Recent” available).

The key question. Is InDesign CS PageMaker Edition worth the money? I think so. While there is certainly going to be a learning curve, Adobe has given a guiding hand to lower the curve with the PageMaker Plug-in and InDesign is a much more robust and sophisticated program than the venerable but creaky PageMaker. (T. LaBarbera, http://tlbtlb.com/ , sysop Compuserve’s Publishing Production forum)"

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