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Mayerchak
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Has Adobe improved the Graphs tool in Illustrator CS6?

May 2, 2012 11:53 AM

Tags: #illustrator #cs6 #graphs #graphing

Does anyone know whether there have been any improvements to the graphing tool in Illustrator CS6?

 

I had thought that perhaps Adobe would be adding a graphs function to Indesign, but there has been no word of it with the CS6 release. And nobody has mentioned graphs in their "new features" reviews of either InDesign nor Illustrator.

 

The graphing function in Illustrator really sucks - it's been the same since Illustrator 88. Have they totally abandoned those of us who have to create graphs again? Or have they improved it but it's just not cool enough for anyone to mention?

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2012 12:29 PM   in reply to Mayerchak

    No.

     
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    May 2, 2012 12:35 PM   in reply to Mayerchak

    I wouldn't give up hope.

     

    And from my perspective (I create both graphs and patterns)... there are far, far, far more pattenr creators out there than graph users.

     

    Realize that CS6 was the 64bit jump... that took a LOT of work. New features was not the primary focus of CS6. They did manage to add a few new items, but the bulk of changes were in the performance realm. Very few existing features were altered unless they had a direct relation to performance (like blurs and glows).

     
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    May 2, 2012 12:52 PM   in reply to Mayerchak

    My guess would the Photoshop messade has more to do with the video card in a 4 year old MacPro, than the actual MacPro. The original video cards in MacPros (nVidia 7300) were hugely underwhelming.

     

    I can see how you may feel that the only driving force for upgrading is new features. For many, like myself, I'll upgrade to anything which means I either get work done faster or easier. Both have a direct relation to revenue generated. Illustrator CS6 (16) is absolutely a better performing application than any previous version.

     
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    May 2, 2012 8:14 PM   in reply to Mayerchak

    Like many other users, I am in total agreement with you as to frustrations with the primitive graph capabilities in Illustrator, and the whole Master Collection.  Adobe is making a significant mistake here, it could be expanding its reach rather than forcing potential buyers away.

     

    That said, I am hoping that the new Image Trace feature will make it much easier to bring Excel graphs into Illustrator.

     

    I also strongly disagree with the idea of putting enhanced graphing functions into InDesign.  One of the fundamental reasons I am upgrading to CS6 is the enhanced ability to quickly convert Illustrator vectors to After Effects shape layers, this could be huge for my workflow, and animating graphs is the heart of it.  Illustrator is the natural home for better graphing, so it can support InDesign on one side and After Effects on the other, using the special relationships on both sides.  (It can be problematic to get InDesign to play well with After Effects.)

     
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    May 2, 2012 9:05 PM   in reply to [scott w]

    [scott w] wrote:

     

    I wouldn't give up hope.

     

    And from my perspective (I create both graphs and patterns)... there are far, far, far more pattenr creators out there than graph users.

     

     

    I doubt that myself knowing how many annual reports, financil news sections of daily news papers, other finacial reports, populations studies that are put into print, the use of them in science and geography and sociology text books and the list is probably endless
    I think it iss probably fair to say perhaps people might use other software for this pupose other than Illustrator but the argument I have made for this is exactly that the need for it is there and more powerful support for the ability to do more intuitve and flexible design for graphs is requested so often that it is a no brainer. I know they are thinking about it will probably as a guess be versio CS 7 or 8 but I am pretty certain they are going to do this.

     

    But of course I think they need a much better color featue than the currennt live paint because color most users use.

     
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    May 3, 2012 3:42 AM   in reply to [scott w]

    And from my perspective (I create both graphs and patterns)... there are far, far, far more pattenr creators out there than graph users.

     

    Don't think so. In fact I would guess that more people would actually use AI to make more pretty data graphics than PowerPoint if only it could deliver. Adobe is missing quite a chance here. Contrary to most of you, though, I don't see the solution in more dedicated graphing tools. AI simply needs more procedralism in general like the stuff VectorScribe does. This would not only help make more beautiful data porn, but also UI designers and lots of otehr poeple...

     

    Mylenium

     
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    Jun 6, 2012 2:46 PM   in reply to Mayerchak

    I think it depends on the kind of graphing you need to do. If it's sales vs. FY quarters, Excel is probably good enough. If you want a high-end graphing package, they are often part of a high-end statistical software package, and clearly that's not where Illustrator is going or should be going. The good news is that some of them can output their graphs in vector format that can be imported easily into Illustrator for some final makeup and lipstick.

     
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    Jun 6, 2012 3:57 PM   in reply to akilleen

    I think that illustrator should be updted to work with Excell better and to have the abilties of high end graphing software as well this is important to getting professionals in other fields to use Illustrator and I bet even witht he capabilites that might allow them to designthe graphs themselves they will rely more on the professionals to at least initialize the design and format for their companies.

     

    Much easier for comapnies to have their in house staff work from templates and even better for them to work on templates that they own and are specific to their own needs.

     

    If Adobe had this in Illustrator especially with the Cloud then companies will start to really jump on the band wagon.

     

    That is an educated [pprofessional is Adobes best partner as it would be for the professional desinger as well.

     

    A better graphing tool that is top flight will do a lot to make Illustrator and InDesign along with some of the Motion Gtraphics tool a real seller to the corporate market.

     

    It's sbout time they stop playing with this amatuer Microsoft mentality!

     
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    Jun 6, 2012 4:42 PM   in reply to Mayerchak

    As I said, it depends on the kinds of graphing you need to do. Different strokes for different folks. In my field I'm interested in more than just getting a graph as an end product. I have data sets that need statistical analysis (with SAS for example) before plotting anything. I don't expect that from Illustrator. If you just want bar graphs that's a different issue. For most people who want to show a graph, Illustrator would be way overkill IMO. I'm no big fan of Microsoft, but most users who need to make a presentation that includes graphs can accomplish it with Excel, which is standard software in business. Thinking that they will jump to Illustrator for graphing the monthly sales report is naive.

     
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    Jun 6, 2012 5:21 PM   in reply to akilleen

    Well I might be wrong about this but monthly sales reports is not exactly what I am talking about but seeling a client or making presentations to markets and future customers then i say you have to be foolish to make such an amateurish presentation that Excel will produce, in house might be fine but when you show these statics and numbers in a competitive environment then hell with Excel it all looks pretty much like the same company giving the same results regardless of the actual data.

     

    'The truth is like or not or being as sensitive to it or not the impact on the veiwer in this type of environment is far more important that the actual numbers you have to communicate not just give them information, since chances are it is not going to record.

     

    In house it might even be desired but for the simple purpose that if it looks like it is what is expected then it is probably ok and no one regardless of the actual data will lose their job.

     

    Excell is good for that and good for politicians and stuff like that. That is why Bill gates is pushing that kind of graphic for graphs, but it has little meaning beyond that point.

     

    Being essentially illegible might be your goal but if you need to communicate a strong message then you are not talking about simply delivering homogenized data.

     

    I think you missed the point we are focusiing on sales presentaion, annual reports book publishers, magazines such as science and eco magazines, video and television expo exhibits.

     

    The thinking is larger than what you are looking at and excell cannot offer this.

     

    The bureaucrat is hopeless you can't do anything with them. But the sales force is looking for an advantage and communications is the advantage. 

     
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    Jan 30, 2013 11:40 AM   in reply to Mayerchak

    Heartily agree.

     
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    Nov 25, 2013 8:36 AM   in reply to Mayerchak

    I just got a consulting job where the client wants to improve the look of their newsletter. They have hired a designer to redo the publication in InDesign.

     

    They have hired me to look at their current pie charts and line/bar graphs to see how Illustrator can hook up with Excel to create higher quality images.

     

    I am stunned by how awful the features in Illustrator are. My designer can design lovely looking graphs, but if the client wants anything like currency amounts in wedges, callouts for small slices, rotated legends, etc. etc. he is up the creek without any graphing padding.

     

    Now, I know that Excel has taken over almost all of the business graphing output in the world. But Excel's colors are RGB and their curves are clunky.

     

    Does anyone know of a product that can hook up to Excel and create higher quality charts and graphs, on the Windows platform? We're not looking for scientific graphs, just business ones.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 17, 2014 11:43 AM   in reply to Mayerchak

    I'd just like to add my voice to those calling for an upgrade to the illustrator graph feature. Currently it's an embarrassment.

     

    I just hope Adobe are intelligent enough to avoid thinking it's 'not worthwhile upgrading it - because not enough people use it...' That may well be circular reasoning.

     
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