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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What software is used for what? Part I

If you are new to the design biz you might be overwhelmed by all the software out there and not sure which is the best option for your project.  I know I won’t cover everything on the market, there is just too much out there but I will touch on the industry standards in this four part series.

Page Layout
The current industry standard is to use Adobe InDesign.  Twenty or so years ago the program to use was Adobe PageMaker, then entered Quark which was quickly adopted because of the easy learning curve and flexibility.  PageMaker seemed clunky next to the features Quark offered.  Even novice designers could master a polished layout easily.  

The problem was Quark Inc got a little too big for their own good.  The started pricing their program to an unaffordable rate; even upgrades were difficult to afford.  In addition Quark would not offer educational discounts so it was not possible for students to learn the software to obtain a job.   Finally customer service began to lapse, and upgrades were becoming less compatible with changing technology.  The design world was looking for the next big page layout program.  In all reality InDesign had been on the market for a little while, but most designers expected it to be cumbersome as PageMaker was, but as the design world got more frustrated with the lack of flexibility from Quark the switchover began.

I foresee InDesign staying center stage for design professionals for some time to come.  The reason is upgrades give the program more flexibility to do more tasks.  In addition Adobe has made this program interchangeable with other Adobe products and Microsoft Office.

FYI, I don’t have any tutorials posted for InDesign but will add if I get requests for anything. You can always download a trial version and dig in.

Next week we will talk image manipulation software!

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