Some Adobe InDesign CS6 Basics

Publishing Fundamentals And InDesign

Three things that most web design publications have in common are text, illustrations / diagrams, and, of course, images. All of these are essential elements that typically get imported into a program that handles page layout. Adobe InDesign is one such program that has been popular for over a decade now.

Within the application, text can be created or imported from various word processing programs, including the commonly used Microsoft Word. Adobe Photoshop or other software can be used to edit images and import them into the InDesign program. This program allows you to create basic vector graphics; However, more complex drawings are best created using a program like Adobe Illustrator and then importing them into the InDesign application for manipulation. Within InDesign, you can also work on the layout, graphics, and various tasks to organize and number pages.

Your completed document is then exported using one of several methods. Use the Content Management System to store a PDF, print a single item or an entire folder on a commercial printer, or format your file for easy reading on newer devices, such as the Kindle or the iPad.

How Graphics Work

Bitmap and vector are the two different kinds of graphics programs that exist in the world of Web design today. In a bitmap program such as Adobe Photoshop, your data is compiled from information bits that make up a larger map or a pixel grid consistent of various colors and levels of brightness that are assigned numbers. This is a very efficient method of storing data that is photographic in nature.

The assigned numbers translate as binary code that is strategically saved as zeroes and ones. Bitmaps (or raster images) are resolution dependent, meaning that image quality directly correlates to the pixel-per-inch resolution of the image. For example, Web images only require a resolution of 72 to 150 pixels per inch, while printing requires a resolution that is between 150 and 330 pixels per inch. You may already understand that commercial printing relies on dots per inch. The pixel-per-inch advance in graphic design is basically the same thing.

Adobe Illustrator and other vector programs store data based on a mathematical equation. Color, size, radius, width, and the center point all factor into this equation. Vector files are smaller in size and ideal for the storage of diagrams, logos, and text. Contrary to bitmap files, these files are resolution independent with smooth lines and flat colors.

Adobe InDesign is one such vector program. As such, it does not use the pixel-per-inch resolution method for storage, but it does allow you to import pixel-per-inch images or bitmap files into the application. Adobe InDesign is superior when it comes to dealing with text.