Publisher 2007: Getting Started

Microsoft's business desktop publishing (DTP) application, Publisher, hasn't enjoyed the whizzery of the Ribbon interface or the other improvements made to the rest of the Office 2007 suite. Fortunately, it's already a well-designed and generally easy-to-use application, capable of all kinds of page layout, though without some of the commercial printing flair of an Adobe InDesign or QuarkXpress.

There have been improvements to the program in the 2007 version, though, and one of the first of these is the Getting Started screen, which is much better laid out than before, giving plenty of prominence to the huge array of pre-designed document templates - over 600 of them - and these are broken down by category in a list on the left-hand side of the screen.

The screen also shows recently opened documents down the right-hand side and provides quick access to blank documents in a variety of common sizes. If you browse through the templates , a preview of each design shows in the top-right corner of the screen, though this isn't a lot bigger than the template thumbnails.

Once you've chosen a blank page or template to work from, the main editing screen is also clear, if a little dated looking. The fairly simple toolbox down the left-hand side of the screen, and toolbars along the top, are supplemented by the Task Panel, which gives quick access to more global features, such as Colour Schemes and Font Schemes. Colour schemes are palettes of four main colours which have been coordinated to look good together and font schemes are pairs of headline and body copy fonts which similarly complement each other.


Publisher 2007's Layout Tools make creating a page from scratch far less daunting than it might first appear


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