A friend of mine just asked me a very interesting question. If you had some text that you manually styled (ie not a style yet), and you had Heading 1 in your styles palette already, can you select the new manually styled text and say that it is NOW Heading 1 with the new attributes? Meaning Heading 1's style gets replaced with whatever the style of my manually styled text is.
Thank you in advance for your help.
We're both using InDesign CS4.
If you originally had the text styled as Heading 1 but you modified it in any way, you can simply use the panel dropdown and select "redefine style".
However, if you started from scratch and so the type is in "[Basic Paragraph]", you would need to create a new style, call it heading 2 then delete heading 1 and replace with heading 2. You can then rename the style if you wanted.
...but I was looking for a shorter solution.
...forces me to style some text with Heading first, which also takes time
I don't understand why you think a script will help in this case. All the solutions above can be done with only a few clicks of the mouse and are extremely efficient. It might just force you to reconsider how you work in the future.
actually the best way to do this: more ellegant: is...
Create a new style with the manually styled text. Call it for eg: Heading New.
With nothing selected click the Heading 1 style in the styles panel. Click delete, a dialogue box will pop up and then select replace with Heading New.
But I'm looking for one click... It was just a theoretical question really, we don't really work like that. We do proper styles, but my friend's thinking is right, we should have a simple command that fixes this "problem".
Basically, everyone is making multi-step suggestions that could be, as lilia observes, reproduced in a one-click script. There is no one-step way to achieve what you're asking about in InDesign.
(I run through one of these multi-step style redefinitions hundreds of times a day, but I do it fast enough on the keyboard alone that wrapping these steps up into a scripe would not get me any advantage in terms of speed. Any benefit from wrapping these steps up into a script would be eaten up by the step "remove hands from keyboard, grope for mouse, open Script panel, click on script.")