Easy Desktop Publishing With IStudio Publisher

So you want to publish a magazine, brochure, flier, report, or ad, and you want something more powerful than Apple's Pages but without the learning curve of a pro app like InDesign or Quark. You might consider c:four's iStudio Publisher, which is designed to bridge the gap between high-end desktop publishing and word processing programs.

Starting with a straightforward and non-intimidating interface that features a simple toolkit and shape library on one side and a set of 10 collapsible inspectors on the other, iStudio Publisher gives you some sophisticated capabilities.

Inspectors, for example, let you control documents, characters, objects, pages, text, and more. The program lets you write text along a shaped path or inside a shape and link text along a wavy line. You can produce your own unique shapes and use shapes with images. It also gives you a huge zoom capability (and the ability to see different parts of your pages zoomed at the same time), multiple document windows, smooth panning and document navigation, editing over two-page spreads, master pages, and prints to a PDF file or directly to a printer. With a file format based on XML, it also supports Unicode character encoding.

iStudio Publisher is US$50. A BookBuilder and Pro version are both in the works for the future.

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