Martini Hour 008, In Which Deke Notes that It Doesn't Feel Like an Hour

We've returned to our groovy tech-talk chill this week after the ruckus that was caused by inviting Russell Brown last week. And as promised, a winner from our martini hour visualization exercise will find his or her work featured as the lead graphic for this week's show. We'll start with Steve Newton because he paid the "I live across the Atlantic" tax and didn't get all the kitchy tradeshow castoffs that I sent to Gale solely because she lives in Canada.

Is anyone but me wondering if this picture is listing slightly? Meanwhile, here's the skinny on this week's installment of the world-famous Martini Hour.

When Drinking Doesn't Help (aka Viewer Mail)
This week, dekeWorld's very own Kiwi Goddess, Petra, weighs in a question about the Extract command and how it seems to be missing from CS4. (By the way, this is before I knew she pronounces it Pe-tra, I think I say Pee-tra, sorry about that. And listen how her sexy accent throws Deke off his game for a second.) You can in fact still find the Extract command in the Goodies folder of your CS4 Design Premium disk (if you can still find it). Here is the link that Deke mentions during the show for where you can find the missing "extras" that dissapeared in CS4.

InDesign! Secret Handshake
The Links palette in ID has always been handy but quirky. The CS4 version is no exception. We wax poetically about links, packaging, the handy Copy Links to command, and other tales of my wacky InDesign life. By the way, I think the INX issue that I was annoyed with during the recording of this episode, where you needed linked links before INX conversion, has now been fixed in an update to CS4. Note, I rely heavily on the wisdom of Her Geekness Anne-Marie Concepcion of InDesign Secrets for most of my blathering this week.

Toast of the Week
We toast our good friend and author of handy companion books for DSLR cameras. Not only has Ben written a great book on the XSi, but just yesterday he added another book for the Nikon D90 that's climbing the charts.

Interested? How can you resist. Here's the regular-quality (192kbps) audio file. You can stream, or for best results, right-click and choose Download or Save.

Don't want to miss a single episode of this singular treat for the ears and mind? Subscribe via iTunes. And don't forget, this is a separate subscription from your regular dekePod podcast.

Got a question you'd like us to answer on the show? Write us on the site, or even better, call 1-888-dekepod. (That's 1-888-335-3763.) Practice, be charming, and ask us something really intriguing. Or just ask a sincere question with great earnestness.

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Comments

Is anyone but me wondering if this picture is listing slightly?

The picture looks dead on... I think the frame is just dropping down to the right to compensate for the lines in deke's forehead; then again, we could all just be a tad warped.... lol

Indeed

The more you drink, the straighter it gets. :-D

wrong

my friends Johnnie, Jim, and Jack, (yes, the three wise men); all say the frame is cock-eyed... however, it was fun testing out your hypothesis! Let the Good Times Roll!!!

Eat this Adobe!

Like Petra with her extract filter, I was somewhat disappointed to see that Adobe got rid of "Change Layer Content" menu option in CS4, but left the code functionality without the steering wheel (?!). (although I consider this option to be more like pits on a pit-bull, to paraphrase Petra). So I took matter into my own hands. Special for subscribers of this blog ('cause I love you all so), behold: I give you a Change Layer Content Panel which does exactly what the old command did. Granted, there is no Vibrance option here as the functionality of this command got carried over straight from CS3 (and it wasn't included back then either). But hey - better this than nothing, right? Installation instructions included. Here's a screenshot: Click here to download -iVan __________________________________________________ Happy, happy, joy, joy!

Big thanks to Mark Stubbins...

...who was meticulous enough to find a workaround solution for the Photoshop’s refusal to allow opening of the old panel. As a result of his email I have updated and simplified the installation. The old link will now get you the updated panel. -iVan Happy, happy, joy, joy!

Change Layer Content

Being essentially a PSElements user before converting to CS4, I have no idea what this is. Is this something I need? IOW, if I'm not missing it now, is there a reason I should download it. I actually don't know what "Change Layer Content" IS/does. TIA! Shirley

Hi Shirley

To answer your question in as few words as possible: you most likely won’t need this. However, in more than few words, the answer would sound more like this: You most likely won’t need this. Unless you do, that is (which you don’t ), in which case I’d say – yes, you need it (but I don’t since you don’t). OK, I think I filled my quota for attempting to sound funny. Which I don’t. Unless I do, that is… On a more serious note, the “Change Layer Content” command was something I found rather useful in previous versions of Photoshop. Unlike some functions that border on utter uselessness, for some of us - this one was actually a time saver. Imagine a scenario where you have to apply an adjustment layer to a particular image. Say you wanted to highlight a spot within an image by making midtones brighter. You’d make a selection and mosey over to the layers palette to create your levels layer. Easy-peasy, right? Say, you’re happy with the general look of that, but you find a blend mode and a few layer effects to be beneficial to this composition, so you pile that stuff up as well. So far so good. As it happens, the road to happiness is often ugly and filled with roadkill, and we have to swerve to avoid bunny rabbits. That means that if you decided that the Curves adjustment layer would have been better suited to your needs instead of Levels, wouldn’t it be nice if you could just swap the content of that layer, leaving all the blend modes and effects intact? That’s what the old “Change Layer Content” option was good for - swapping the content of one layer for another one without disturbing all the goodies that come with it. And now this command is gone. Which is bad news for bunnies. And that’s why I created this panel to bring this functionality back. ‘Cause I’m a rabbit-lov’n’ kinda guy. Not in a weird, creepy way. No need to call the cops… again. Without it, as it is in CS4, you have to create a new layer, then one by one copy all the effects, masks and manually set the blend mode to match, and then delete the previous layer just for a good measure. Peter Rabbit doesn't stand a chance!!! And what would the kids do on Easter then, I ask you. Think of the children!!! But, given you’re just moving to CS4 from Elements, I’d say not to worry about it. When I first got into image editing, I haven’t used this function for years, ‘till I eventually got married to it and couldn’t live without it. Possibly due to the fact I didn’t know if this function was available back then. Or it was the court order… one of those. Bottom line – if you’re not used to having it, there is no point cluttering your monitor with yet another panel. For those that used it, and still want to use it - clutter away, or bring the panel up when you need it. Cheers! -iVan __________________________________________________ Happy, happy, joy, joy!

That's fantastic, iVan!

Did you check if there is a hook to Vibrance? Just curious, cuz I had to request that code custom for my Chans & Masks palette. Feel free to crack my palette and steel the code if you like. I love this, btw!

no, I didn't...

...but I just checked you panel, and you don't have vibrance either. Am I missing something: Channels & Masks Panel -iVan __________________________________________________ Happy, happy, joy, joy!

Uh, duh

I forgot, I didn't include Vibrance. But I have it rattling around somewhere. I'll look into it next week when I'm home. Haven't loaded the palette but curious: Do your buttons invoke Adjustments palette or old-style dialog boxes? Wondering b/c editing actions still gets you dialog boxes. So many hidden warrens to this program. :-)

Dialog boxes

Sweet, sweet dialog boxes. Oh, I missed them so! Something else otherwise impossible in CS4 happens when using my panel: You can create a solid fill layer and then convert it to an adjustment layer so it's the only layer present. Not that this has ANY benefit whatsoever, but Photoshop won't let you have only one layer if it's an adjustment layer in ANY other circumstance. -iVan __________________________________________________ Happy, happy, joy, joy!

I'm no one to talk

on this subject as I use CS2; but wouldn't Vibrance be under hue/saturation? I see that on iVans Panel, but not deke's. try looking under deke's Adjustments or maybe Color Range buttons, may be hidden in there with all the other goodies... just a shot in the dark. BTW, I really was serious flyboy, nice implementation!

Thanks Az

Kind of you to say that. I'm not a coder though. When I need to code something, I always have to teach myself how to, so in this case I'd have to see the implementation of Vibrance elsewhere to figure out or steal what I can and test to see if it works. BTW, HSL isn't bundled with Vibrance. But Vibrance does have a Saturation option (without Hue and Lightness). Otherwise, without GUI I'm perfectly useless (thank God for Adobe Configurator) Hey, why DO we have Saturation appear with Vibrance as well as with HSL? Does anyone know if Saturation behaves any different between the two panels? -iVan P.S. I updated the panel since I posted the link (the same link will get you the updated version as I replaced the file on a server). I found it to be too wide when bundled with some narrower panels in CS4, and a scroll button would appear. That shouldn't be a problem anymore. You'll be able to tell if you got the new version as the first three buttons aren't in one row anymore (as shown in a preview above). __________________________________________________ Happy, happy, joy, joy!

Very cool!

I'm gonna try it out. Thanks! :-D By the way, I played with the extract filter tool thingy today ('cos it's a tool for tools and I'm one cool tool, baby!) and I really do like the frame effects it [sometimes] creates. You just haphazardly paint around the edge of the image, fill the middle, and viola! a grungy, textured, random edge - just like it used to do with "selections", only more useful. Sort of. :-)

Thats cool

it takes me back to the old days with AutoLisp in AutoCad... I loved it... for a while, but then it became clear that I was just reinventing the wheel that was there all along, a few key strokes and then... I was a Unix admin. How the hell does that work out? No, seriously, very cool time saver iVan... You Rock my Man!

Relative Links in InDesign

No relative links in InDesign as of CS4! BTW, a quick "gotcha" when using the Links palette vs. the Package command, to get all the images in a file: obviously, the Links palette will give you access to every linked file in the InDesign document, but a package will ignore files that are 100% on the pasteboard, even if "Include Fonts and Links from Hidden and Non-Printing Content" is checked -- the pasteboard isn't considered Hidden or Non-Printing. Feature? Bug? Up to the individual user! -- Adam Jury | Dirty Words Design videocast http://dirtywords.tv a video podcast about Adobe InDesign and Graphic Design

Thank for the info, Adam!

You are the Jury. Or at least 1 of 12. (Am I the only one that thinks this absolute links thing is BS? WTF? Again and again, it hangs us up like crazy. And I honestly don't see the benefit!)

Deke is rubbing off on Colleen

I noticed that Colleen calls it the Layers "palette" instead of "panel.

I always wondered what that crazy bint sounded like.

Now I know she sounds nothing at all like any of the voices inside her head. And she rambled on a bit. Too much tokin' before the call is my guess. Tch, tch, tch. And but of course she's sane[ish]!!! She must be, 'cos she likes you guys too and that's definitely the domain of the sane. :-D

Considering where you're from...

...it's not "too much tokin". More like too much Tolkien. :-P So, how are the computer woes these days, Petra? My offer still stands. -iVan __________________________________________________ Happy, happy, joy, joy!