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56 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

You can avoid some (most? all?) of that hassle by simply grouping the two Text Frames. Then if you need to resize or move them as a unit, just select the Group (rather than one of the individual frames) and they move or resize together.

spanning-sample.afpub

Thanks for the suggestion and example Walt. It is a technique that seems to work in your example, but why have to create TWO text boxes and format them as well as the text itself? I don't see this as a regular substitute for the simple "Span Columns." Why don't the programers simply include it? Maybe there's a reason, but as a designer, it escapes me.

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1 minute ago, whitewolf7070 said:

Why don't the programers simply include it? Maybe there's a reason, but as a designer, it escapes me.

Probably answer: because they have a limited amount of time, and are prioritizing their efforts.

When something has a simple alternative (like my example, or pinning a second text frame as dominik suggested), I can easily believe they would prefer to spend their limited time on implementing a function that the user cannot otherwise accomplish.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.239), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.2.464 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.2.4464 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.2.458 Beta

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Posted (edited)

I'm loving AFPub but ...

Pinning should be a really great added function when I have a diagram or image that needs to stay with the associated text when I add or delete chunks of text above it.

But I don't think it will help with my span column problem.Sample page showing heading spanning columns 

Last year I produced a 12 page two column leaflet using Adobe, with a 2-column master page layout.

On a major heading, I would set the span column option to All.

All the text up to that point would be reflowed across to balance columns above the heading.

Then the text following the heading would resume the two-column format below the heading. See image.

I wouldn't have to break text boxes or do anything tricky, and if I added or deleted chunks of text, I wouldn't have to resize text frames.
There doesn't seem to be a straightforward way to do this in AFPub yet, especially when using two-column master pages. 

Edited by Adriandw
add illustration

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3 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

Probably answer: because they have a limited amount of time, and are prioritizing their efforts.

When something has a simple alternative (like my example, or pinning a second text frame as dominik suggested), I can easily believe they would prefer to spend their limited time on implementing a function that the user cannot otherwise accomplish.

I understand their limited time. However, if they think this is a minor feature, they likely haven’t done much layout work. The suggested work-arounds are a kludge at best.  This is a feature that regular layout artists need every day. Simple as that. Until the span column feature is included, APub will be a novelty, not a workhorse for many people, IMHO.

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2 hours ago, whitewolf7070 said:

...However, if they think this is a minor feature, they likely haven’t done much layout work...This is a feature that regular layout artists need every day. Simple as that. Until the span column feature is included, APub will be a novelty...for many people, IMHO.

I use span columns in relatively few publications. Good thing you added the IMHO...

Without span columns, there is a wide variety of work that can be done. And while the work-around is a slight pita, it's what had to be done for a couple decades or more before it was available (except if one used Ventura Publisher as I did for a couple decades and still do once in a while).

So yep. It is needed. But so are other things.

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A bit too late now I suppose, but I think span columns is actually a deal breaker for most people. I have two days to produce a 48 page magazine every month and with out span columns I couldn't do it, or certainly couldn't do in a sensible time or accurately. Like most layout people who use two or three columns in their work, the ability to add pull quotes, span a headline and centre it, etc, and have all the text before and after play nicely, is vital. I have pre-ordered Publisher because it is not much money and hopefully they will realise how important span columns is one day. As someone else in this thread said, if they don't think it important, they have not done much serious layout work in the real world. So I will have to stay with InDesign for now. But I hope AP comes up to scratch one day as it would be great to collaborate with many of our volunteers who cannot afford an Adobe sub.

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8 minutes ago, captain_slocum said:

Like most layout people who use two or three columns in their work, the ability to add pull quotes, span a headline and centre it, etc, and have all the text before and after play nicely, is vital.

+1 to that.
I'm on InDesign CS6 (the last version you could purchase), but it's a 32-bit app on the Mac so won't run under the newly announced Catalina Mac OS 10.15.

I've also pre-ordered Publisher, but I'll need to keep an external hard drive with Mojave to boot from and run InDesign CS6 when I need to span columns. 

I hope Publisher sells well enough to justify adding that feature. It would be good, once Publisher has shipped, if Affinity could share its roadmap of features it hoped to add in future release.

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11 hours ago, captain_slocum said:

A bit too late now I suppose, but I think span columns is actually a deal breaker for most people. I have two days to produce a 48 page magazine every month and with out span columns I couldn't do it, or certainly couldn't do in a sensible time or accurately. Like most layout people who use two or three columns in their work, the ability to add pull quotes, span a headline and centre it, etc, and have all the text before and after play nicely, is vital. I have pre-ordered Publisher because it is not much money and hopefully they will realise how important span columns is one day. As someone else in this thread said, if they don't think it important, they have not done much serious layout work in the real world. So I will have to stay with InDesign for now. But I hope AP comes up to scratch one day as it would be great to collaborate with many of our volunteers who cannot afford an Adobe sub.

THANK YOU. Span columns is, as captain_slocum has said, a "deal breaker." I do all my ad and element design in AD and it would be great to edit them natively after placing them in in an AP layout, rather than PDFing after every change. This morning I was trying to figure out a way to work around not having span columns, but no joy. I suppose you can make anything work if you have to, but with a working alternative in ID, it's just too much hassle and too time-consuming to try a work around. I hope they add the feature soon. 

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11 hours ago, captain_slocum said:

Like most layout people who use two or three columns in their work, the ability to add pull quotes, span a headline and centre it, etc, and have all the text before and after play nicely, is vital.

Have you tried creating a second Text Frame, putting your pull quote or headline into it, then moving it on top of your column text, and setting the text flow options to flow the text around the new Text Frame? You can even use Pinning now to keep the added frame in place as you make other adjustments to the text.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.239), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.2.464 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.2.4464 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.2.458 Beta

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37 minutes ago, walt.farrell said:

Have you tried creating a second Text Frame, putting your pull quote or headline into it, then moving it on top of your column text, and setting the text flow options to flow the text around the new Text Frame? You can even use Pinning now to keep the added frame in place as you make other adjustments to the text.

It works fine doing a second frame. Mostly. Its a bit more fiddly than ID/QXP, but it does work.

At one point in time, before span columns, it's how we all did it no matter the publication type. But it does feel a bit like going backwards in capability. I have no doubt it's be added. Until then, this method is the only route.

Mike

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On 6/6/2019 at 9:13 AM, Adriandw said:

It would be good, once Publisher has shipped, if Affinity could share its roadmap of features it hoped to add in future release.

They have already indicated they will be putting out a 1.x roadmap shortly after the initial release, as they have already done with Photo and Designer.

Items on the roadmaps are things they are committing to introducing before a 2.0 release.  The updates within 1.x are free, 2.0 will require payment.

They frequently introduce new features that are not on the roadmaps, also, and the 1.x series has been around for several years now, so the roadmap is not a precise indication of what will be released when - only that it will come before 2.0 does.

 

On 6/6/2019 at 9:13 AM, Adriandw said:

I hope Publisher sells well enough to justify adding that feature.

I expect it will sell quite well regardless of whether or not that particular feature is ever introduced.  There are much more important things than this particular convenient shortcut for what can be achieved in other ways (as @walt.farrell described above).  I do agree that this would be nice to have, but it is hardly the end of the world if it doesn't come.

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On 6/7/2019 at 6:28 AM, fde101 said:

There are much more important things than this particular convenient shortcut for what can be achieved in other ways (as @walt.farrell described above).  I do agree that this would be nice to have, but it is hardly the end of the world if it doesn't come.

C'mon man, seriously? You think those of us bringing this up haven't thought of and/or tried the "second frame" and "pinning" routine? It's a kludge and not workable for deadline driven, magazine and newspaper work. When you have to meet daily/weekly/monthly deadlines for multi-age layouts, this is not a "convenient shortcut." Maybe these kludges work for one-off flyer and brochure work where you can tweak and nudge all day and tell the client to wait. That's a different world, man. 

APub will probably sell well because people like me, who won't use it because of this flaw, but just want to have it in our tool bag while we wait for this flaw to be fixed will buy it anyway. As has been said before, the venerable Ventura Publisher (may it RIP) had this essential feature in the mid-90s. It's omission from APub is a crippling flaw for multi-page production work on deadlines. 

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32 minutes ago, whitewolf7070 said:

the venerable Ventura Publisher (may it RIP) had this essential feature in the mid-90s

Newspapers have been around since the 1600s.  How did they ever manage...

But the fact that tables can't span pages?  Lack of color separations?  No color font support?  No remote control for the toaster out in the kitchen?  ...

 

There is plenty of room for improvement, and lots of room for growth.

Yes, seriously, the "span columns" is a convenient shortcut.  It might be so convenient in your line of work that you would find it worthwhile to use a different program that has it until Publisher eventually adds it (we all hope, and largely expect), and that reasoning may certainly be quite valid, but in the end it is still a shortcut to something that can be done another way...  just like lack of tables that span pages is possible to work around by manually creating separate tables on each page, but wow could that be a pain in some cases...

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@fde101, I'm with @whitewolf7070 and @captain_slocumon this one.

On a multi-page two-column layout where you have sections that might or might not span pages depending on subsequent content, none of the suggestions above is a practical workaround.

Ideally you'd be using a master layout with a two-column text frame,  with the frames linked from page to page.

But without the ability for a heading to span columns, you have to split the text frame at the point where you'd want a heading spanning columns. So you'd be forever tweaking the point of split as you add or rearrange content.

It's perfectly reasonable to discuss the relative priorities of features that we would like to see added to Publisher, but I haven't yet seen a workable alternative to span columns.

 

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Now I have had time to play with the final release of AP, I am very impressed with how good it is, but there are still two deal breakers in it that need fixing before I can recommend it to the various not for profit organisations I advise. The first is the one discussed here, which I posted about in June - spanning columns. This is not a luxury as some one has suggested, but a massive time saver and aid to good layout. (The second is tables not flowing onto other pages, an even worse oversight).

I am hopeful that both these will be in future releases as there is some evidence that Affinity do listen, as long as we make our cases strongly and professionally enough. For instance, I, along with many others, bemoaned the fact that the earlier Betas did not allow images and tables to flow with the text. We were told by a staff member this was not on the road map and unlikely to happen, but there it is in the final product (or something very like it, pinning)

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7 hours ago, captain_slocum said:

Now I have had time to play with the final release of AP, I am very impressed with how good it is, but there are still two deal breakers in it that need fixing before I can recommend it to the various not for profit organisations I advise. The first is the one discussed here, which I posted about in June - spanning columns. This is not a luxury as some one has suggested, but a massive time saver and aid to good layout...

Yes, I truly want to switch from ID to APub, but can't as long as there is no Span Columns. I do newspaper/magazine layout and it is a must have for that kind of work. I did buy it though, in hopes that Affinity will add this feature soon. 

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8 hours ago, captain_slocum said:

I am very impressed with how good it is, but there are still two deal breakers in it that need fixing before I can recommend it to the various not for profit organisations I advise. The first is the one discussed here, which I posted about in June - spanning columns

I produce publications for three non-profits - I’m using a copy of InDesign which I purchased as a component of CS6 several years ago - neither I nor the non-profits could justify the monthly charges for the latest InDesign. I’d love to switch them all to Affinity Publisher but without Span Columns (and cross-references for longer documents) it wouldn't be a complete solution and therefore I’ll hold off persuading them to adopt it (although I have purchased my own copy).

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While I don't think Span Columns and Split Columns missing from APub is as "crippling" as some users state, it is inconvenient enough for me that I can't justify investing the time and money to learn the app, to begin with.

I don't expect a full InDesign replacement on day 1, but Span and Split columns is a hell of a lot more important than the Stock photo integration.


TheGraphicMac: For design resources, Apple & Adobe tips and discussion, and more.

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3 hours ago, MacGizmo said:

Span and Split columns is a ... lot more important than the Stock photo integration.

For a publishing program, I agree.  The "Stock photo integration" however was more important than span/split columns for Photo (though I personally never use it even there), and has been in Photo for a few releases now, so it was probably low-hanging fruit to copy that feature over to Publisher, while spanning and splitting would require a fair bit more development time.

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On 6/23/2019 at 11:28 PM, fde101 said:

spanning and splitting

What is splitting? This thread was about spanning text columns (with values 1, 2, 3...), and I think splitting applies only to table columns/cells.You can already add columns to text frame if you want..

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21 minutes ago, Fixx said:

What is splitting? This thread was about spanning text columns (with values 1, 2, 3...), and I think splitting applies only to table columns/cells.You can already add columns to text frame if you want..

This is an example for split columns. Single column text box that has been split into two columns.

Capture_000091.png.3b0f3ef6947520014d06c18b16c9072c.png

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Text frame columns are not anything new. I just do not get it what "splitting" would do here. After all, you just set the amount of columns for a text frame. Now, in tables splitting can do many kind of havoc..

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1 hour ago, Fixx said:

Text frame columns are not anything new. I just do not get it what "splitting" would do here. After all, you just set the amount of columns for a text frame. Now, in tables splitting can do many kind of havoc..

It's OK that you don't get it.

One cannot make the above in columns. Not without a lot of work, anyway.

One could use a 2-cell, 2-column table to make it. But it is far slower to make as it cannot be part of the text flow and automating it along with the text flow is harder.

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12 minutes ago, MikeW said:

One cannot make the above in columns. Not without a lot of work, anyway.

But would not span columns do for the 'empty' two column bits in-between the dates and descriptions? Seems to me to be a case of six of one and a half-dozen of the other.


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