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GarryP

Does anyone have a good way to do ‘fly-out numbering’ in Publisher?

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I have some paragraphs that I want to give a number to but I want the number to be to the left of the text, rather than 'within' the text.

It might be easier to explain what I want using an image, so please see the attached where I have used five different techniques (denoted by the numbers in the black circles on the right). The frames are shown to give an idea of what's there.

Technique 1 was to use a simple text frame for the text and a separate artistic text layer for the number. Easy to create but awkward having to make sure that the number layer is kept aligned with the text.

Technique 2 was to manipulate various spacings of the paragraph. Reasonable, if a little awkward to do, but the baseline of the number is always the same as the text so the top of the number isn't aligned with the top of the text (which is what I want).

Technique 3 was to use a two-column text frame. Some manipulation of column widths and gutters was needed which wasn't too bad but having more than one paragraph per text frame is awkward.

Technique 4 was to use the Numbering feature and manipulate the spacings. More awkward than the other techniques as the x-position of the text frame needed to be placed manually (no way - that I could find - to line-up the left-hand side of the body text with the margin), and it has the same problem as technique 2 with the number having the same baseline as the text.

Technique 5 was to use a Drop Cap and manipulate some spacings. Not ideal at all, and I can't have a dot after the number, and the size of the number has to be a multiple of the line height.

Is there a better way of doing this?
Plus, does anyone know what this sort of thing is properly called? (If I knew the right search term I might have more luck finding something.)

flyout-numbering.png

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Probably you need to create a separate text box for each number and use pinning to anchor it in case of the text moving by extra space or added text coming before it.

John

Pinning panel.png

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Can you use a 2 column table?


Due to the fact that Boris Johnson is now our Prime Minister, punctuation, spelling and grammar will never be worried about ever again.  We now have far bigger problems to be worried about.

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With technique 4 can't you simply use the Transform panel to align the text box where it need to be, by subtracting the offset from the X position?

  1. Draw the text box aligned to the margin.
  2. Add your text and numbering.
  3. Make a mental note of the indent (mine defaulted to 6.4mm).
  4. In the X position of the Text Box type X-Offset (in my case X - 6.4mm) to perfectly align the edge of the text with the margin.

Or set a guide at this position to ease future snapping.

I guess this would be a pain if you later wanted to change the indent!


Win10 Home x64   |   AMD Ryzen 7 2700X @ 3.7GHz   |   16 GB RAM   |   1TB SSD   |   nVidia GTX 1660   |   Huion 1060 Plus

How I make GIFs >>> ScreenToGIF (Windows only, Open Source, Portable, ~600kB)

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I guess I don't understand why simply assigning the Numbered 1 paragraph style won't work. I think it provides all the capabilities you need.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.3.627 Beta.

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I should have been more specific that I would like to use the numbering feature to automatically number the paragraphs. Apologies that this wasn’t made clear.

jrkay, pinning could be used but if I decided to change the distance between the numbers and text then a lot of manual work may be necessary. Also, automatic numbering won’t work with this technique.

carl123, as mentioned in my original post (Technique 3), a 2-column text frame is awkward to use. The numbers are divorced from the text which means they can easily get out-of-line (both numerically and positionally) and having more than one paragraph in a frame makes it more difficult to keep everything looking nice without a lot of manual work. Also, automatic numbering can’t be used.

Aammppaa, that doesn’t help with aligning the tops of the numbers with the tops of the text. And it’s a bit awkward to do lots of times, especially, as you say, if I need to make changes.

Walt, the “Numbered 1” style has the number inside the frame which is aligned to the margin. What I want is the text aligned to the margin with the number over to the left. (I can use extra guides and indents but I was hoping not to have to.) Also, as alluded to in my original post (Techniques 2 and 5), I want the numbers to be larger than the text but have their tops aligned with the tops of the text.

It’s looking like I can’t get what I want so I might have to just use something simpler. Sometimes you just have to work with what you’ve got. Maybe I’m just being too awkward.

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2 hours ago, GarryP said:

the “Numbered 1” style has the number inside the frame which is aligned to the margin. What I want is the text aligned to the margin with the number over to the left. (I can use extra guides and indents but I was hoping not to have to.) Also, as alluded to in my original post (Techniques 2 and 5), I want the numbers to be larger than the text but have their tops aligned with the tops of the text.

Thanks, Garry. I missed that aspect.

Still:

  1. You could adjust the Text Frame so it overlaps the margin.
  2. You can assign a separate Character Style to the numbers in Numbered 1 (or a style based on it), giving them whatever characteristics you want without affecting the paragraph text.

For example:

image.png.d4d4d6221e2c6477963f74747a0388a4.png

numbering.afpub

I updated Numbered 1 to specify a character style for the numbers (Larger Number). Then I changed the indent of the text in Numbered 1 to put more space between the number and the text, and then I moved the text frame to the left.

 


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.3.627 Beta.

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Thanks Walt, I’m almost there now. (I still don’t really like the idea of expanding the frame outside the margin but I guess I can put the margin anywhere I want and I can use a guide to align other stuff so that’s not a major hassle.)
I had to also change the baseline offset of the number styles to align the tops of the numbers with the tops of the text but it’s closer to what I’d like.
Now I just need to figure out how to right-align the numbers (to the red line in my newest example) (right alignment within the style isn’t doing what I think it should be doing, but that probably says more about me) – this wasn’t mentioned in my original post as I didn’t think about it at the time – and I’ll have it how I want it.
I’ve tried a few experiments but I think it will just be a case of playing around with different options to see if something pops up.

flyout-numbering-with-right-align.png

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3 hours ago, GarryP said:

Now I just need to figure out how to right-align the numbers

I can't explain why it should work this way, but try changing the alignment of the numbers:

image.png.832f7536f9bdef8be0f8ffd0b02bb155.png

Something that feels weird is happening. The number is pushed to the left if alignment is specified as right, and pushed to the right if alignment is specified as left. That seems backwards, but I don't understand it enough yet to be confident that it's a bug. So I haven't reported it yet.

Center seems to do what you want, in a very brief test.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.3.627 Beta.

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Walt, that’s the problem I’m having.

In the Help, it says “Tabstop — adjust the distance text moves by in your list when the tab key is pressed.”
This is a little confusing as I’m not pressing the tab key. I might add a tab stop via the Text field but I’m not pressing the Tab key so I don’t know if this really does relate to the same thing or whether it’s just copied/pasted from something else without making sure it says what it should. (It probably does but it should be made clear.) The tabstop setting seems to be related to where the text after the numbering goes so I’ll assume that for now but how should that affect where the numbers go?

Also, again in the Help, it says “Alignment — select from Left Align, Centre Align, or Right Align.” but that doesn’t tell me what is supposed to get “aligned” or where it’s being “aligned” to. E.g. If I select “Right Align” shouldn’t the numbers be abutted against the left-hand-side of the text?
Like you, when I select “Right Align” – which is the default for some reason – the numbers are left-aligned to the frame and the text is left-aligned to what I think is the tabstop. Selecting “Left Align” doesn’t seem to make any difference and, often, “Centre Align” doesn’t seem to do anything either. (What is it ‘centrally aligning’ to? I can’t figure it out from what I see.)

With such a scarcity of information in the Help it’s difficult to know what these things are supposed to do and, as such, it’s even more difficult to know if they are working the way they are supposed to. How can we know if something is working properly if we aren’t told how it is supposed to work?

Take my attached GIF for example. The orange line is at 36pt from the left-hand-side of the frame which has its origin at the top-left of the page.
I have two paragraphs, each formatted to a different numbering style, each with a tabstop set at 36pt. When I change the numbering alignment of one paragraph it doesn’t seem to do anything. But when I change the numbering alignment of the other paragraph it doesn’t make sense (to me). The place the text and numbers go to don’t seem to have much (if any) relation to where the tabstop is set or which alignment is selected.

I have a feeling that this area of functionality is broken in some way but I can’t say for certain because I don’t know how it’s supposed to work. Numbering is a basic staple of DTP so it should be easy to do. The way it’s implemented may allow for all kinds of wonderful ways of working but if it’s not easy to figure out then a lot of people will leave it alone rather than endlessly experiment until they figure it out for themselves. The developers must know how it’s supposed to work so why not tell us?

At the moment I’m stumped. The options I change don’t seem to effect the document in ways that I can understand. Maybe I’m just not seeing things right but, as has already been said, there’s no way for me to know otherwise. A very frustrating situation.

numbering-alignment.gif

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15 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

Something that feels weird is happening. The number is pushed to the left if alignment is specified as right, and pushed to the right if alignment is specified as left. That seems backwards, but I don't understand it enough yet to be confident that it's a bug. So I haven't reported it yet.

Hi Walt

If you have got access to word, have a look at the way number justification is used there. It has been a couple of years since I created all of my numbering styles in it but I seem to remember that it behaved the same, but my memory may be playing tricks :)

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1 hour ago, Murfee said:

If you have got access to word, have a look at the way number justification is used there. It has been a couple of years since I created all of my numbering styles in it but I seem to remember that it behaved the same, but my memory may be playing tricks

Thanks, but no, only LibreOffice here. I could try looking at it, I suppose. If it works the same way maybe its Help will be better :)


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.4.647 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.3.641 and 1.8.3.627 Beta.

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@GarryP If you turn on Text > Shown Special Characters it gives some indication of what is going on.

It is the Tab itself that is being aligned.

A tab Right aligned at 36pt means that the right edge of the tab sits at 36pt. Therefore the left edge of anything that follows will be at 36pt.

A tab left aligned at 36pt means that the left edge of the tab sits at 36pt. Therefore the left edge of the text that follows is pushed further to the right, by the (default) width of a tab character.

A tab center aligned at 36pt means that the middle of the tab sits at 36pt. Therefore… erm… I find it hard to really understand what is going on here!


Win10 Home x64   |   AMD Ryzen 7 2700X @ 3.7GHz   |   16 GB RAM   |   1TB SSD   |   nVidia GTX 1660   |   Huion 1060 Plus

How I make GIFs >>> ScreenToGIF (Windows only, Open Source, Portable, ~600kB)

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@Aammppaa What you described is what I expect to happen – that’s how tab-stops work everywhere else – but it’s not happening in this case and that’s where my confusion comes from. (I still don’t understand what a centre-aligned tab-stop means for bullets/numbering – e.g. Why/when would you use one? – but that’s a side issue.)
Since the feature isn’t properly documented I can’t tell whether it’s supposed to work the way it does for specific reasons known only to the developer(s) or whether it’s just not working.
I tried the simplest numbering I could – fresh document; fresh text frame; revert to defaults; two one-word paragraphs; switch numbering on via “Paragraph/Bullets and Numbering” – and none of the align buttons seem to do anything.
My guess is that it’s just not working properly.

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