Keynote ’08 thoughts

Friday, August 10, 2007

I’ve been tinkering with Keynote ’08 (by the way, the app itself is tagged as Keynote 4 in the about box) and it’s a love hate thing all over again (mostly love).

The good things are real time savers for Theme makers like myself. If most of your photo cutouts are rectangular, the new media Place holder function, combined with the new Photo Frames stoke function, are a complete replacement for the old photo cutout system. Heck, you can even make odd shaped placeholders, as long as you don’t want a frame around them. The only real need for photo cutouts now is if you want to make odd shaped cutouts with dressing or frames around them.

My only complaint with this new system is that you can’t use an image placeholder that’s grouped. I have a photo frame that resembles a slide, and I want the photo to sit behind it, and always move with it. That just won’t work with this system, so in my new theme, I’ll have to include instructions on how to use this image frame.

This brings me to another complaint…if you create your own custom Photo frame for use inside Keynote, it has to be installed inside the Keynote app itself. The drawback is, no one else will have that frame, and if they open your .key file, the frame will just be missing from around the photo. I’m hoping at some point Apple sees fit to notice when there are 3rd party frames installed and give you the option to move them into the .key file. When that file is opened on a new machine, Keynote would display it properly.

Another discovery I made just a few minutes ago is with the custom Keynote shapes many of us have been using in our themes lately. In Keynote 2 and 3, if you had a custom Keynote shape with a hole in it, and you chose to make it editable, the hole would go away, or the shape would freak out and get all messed up. Now, though you can’t create a shape with a hole in it, you can EDIT a shape with a hole in it, and the hole stays intact. This is a huge step forward in functionality, because it allows the end user to edit shapes without breaking them.

Anyway, we’ll be posting more reviews and other stuff over the coming days as we really tear into Keynote ’08.