4 Replies Latest reply on Jun 2, 2017 1:36 PM by Brian Stoppee

    Do Powerful InDesign Features Empower You to Make Powerful Mistakes?

    Brian Stoppee Adobe Community Professional

      We have been in the media technology world forever (yes, before Mac or Windows). We have learned from our mistakes (and there have been plenty).


      A simple and early example of our misused power was Find & Replace (usually command + f on the Mac and control + f in Windows). If an Adobe InDesign document has abbreviated our name as “Stop” and we want to make a blanket change to find “Stop” and replace it with “Stoppee,” we could quickly make 132 changes by using Replace All. The mistake in that can be 131 of them are correctly changed. Then there is the other one which would now read, “Make a right turn at the next Stoppee sign.”


      What is a better way of handling that?


      In InDesign, 1.) click on a frame of text. 2.) Use the above keyboard shortcut of command + f to open the Find/Replace dialog box. 3.) Enter what you want to find in that field. 4.) In the Replace field, enter the new text. 5.) Now, use the Find Next button to carefully go through all of the related text. It’s powerful to be correct, even when it takes a little more time.


      Then there are all those Swatch colors someone sends you. We like to run a clean ship. If we can keep a Swatches panel open and we don’t need to scroll through it, our workflow is more efficient.


      Not everyone sees it that way. Someone could send you an InDesign document with miles of Swatch colors. Do they even use all that stuff? You can find out by selecting them, one at a time, and clicking on the trash can icon (be sure nothing is selected). If there are Swatches in the panel which are not in use, they’ll disappear when you trash them. If they are in use, you’ll be asked of you want to replace them with another Swatch.


      What’s the story with replacing your Swatches? That’s another situation where it’s easy to make powerful mistakes. By way of example, it’s possible for someone to keep saving the same green over and over and over again. Typically, you end up with something like, “Green 1, Green 2, Green 3” They may be the same green as the first one, which might be, “Green.” You can trash each one of the three numbered greens and replace them with “Green” and dozens, maybe hundreds of green Swatches will powerfully change. But you might get a call from the client, who comments about the finished InDesign project, that you delivered, “Whoa! What happened? Each one of those greens had a minor variation in blue?” Then you have trouble. Saving those client Swatches might be a good idea. We can explore that process in another topic.


      The best practice is to have backed up files and redundancies (meaning that you have more than one safe place).