This chapter shows how to work with think-cell's text boxes to quickly create a complex slide layout like the example inIntroduction to design:
Next you will learn how to work with think-cell text boxes, insert, adjust, duplicate, delete, move and modify them to create your slide. Then we'll recreate the example above with minimal effort using these actions. Of course, other or even more complex layouts are also possible, which always rely on simple and meaningful actions that define relationships between elements and eliminate the need for manual positioning and resizing.
Editing and formatting text in think-cell text boxes works the same as in PowerPoint. However, it is important to point this out, IfLock default positionsis disabledthink-cell text boxes differ from PowerPoint text boxes in terms of placement and layout. think-cell text boxes do not initially have a predefined fixed size or position on the slide. Instead, they adjust dynamically as you type text, insert other elements, or move existing ones. During this process, think-cell's text boxes always maintain their relationships to the other elements on the slide.
think-cell automatically places the elements evenly on the slide. That way, you don't have to manually resize and reposition each element after each slide change.
- Insert and wrap text boxes
- Duplicate text boxes
- Delete text fields
- Move text boxes
- Undo text fields or change instant links
- Set the same size for multiple text boxes
- Structure of a complex example
- Defining a fixed size or locked position of elements
15.1Insert and wrap text boxes
Suppose you start with a blank slide. First, let's explain how to insert and customize text boxes:
- Go to the think-cell group on the PowerPoint ribbon and click The text box.
- Click once on the slide to insert your first text box.
The box is automatically centered on the slide. Don't worry if this isn't where you want the box to appear on your finished slide. Its position and size changes as you design your slide and dynamically adapts to pasted text or other elements on the slide.
- Start typing to enter text.
- Optionally click on the box and use think-cell's floating toolbar to add a fill color to it.
- Add another text box by clicking The text boxbutton again. If the cursor is directly above, to the right, below, or to the left of the existing box, you can snap the next text box to the existing box by clicking one of the snap locations once.
The two boxes are now docked.
Wrapped text boxes in think-cell have the advantage that they stay connected during all content and layout changes. As you enter text, the position of the boxes and their alignment are constantly readjusted.
15.1.1Wrap multiple text boxes
You may have a slide that already has text boxes arranged in rows or columns, and you want to insert another text box to form a table. When inserting the new box, you can decide how many of the existing boxes it should fit into:
- click no The text boxbutton on the band.
- Hover over the row of text boxes on the slide. Notice how the orange inset frame changes depending on the mouse position.
- If you move the mouse pointer near the center of one of the boxes, the snap target is that box.
- If you want the snap target to be two adjacent boxes, move your mouse just over half the combined width of those boxes.
- And if you want to adjust the full width of the line, move your mouse some distance over the center box.
- Click once to insert the new text box and it will snap into place with the three text boxes below.
As you can see, it's easy to create a table by connecting think-cell's text boxes. Unlike shapes in PowerPoint, this table retains its structure as you add content or change other elements on the slide.
15.1.2Wrap spacing text boxes
You can also match just the outside edges of an inserted text box to existing boxes on the slide. This will place the new box separate from the others but keep the same width for both:
- click no The text boxand move your mouse under the left edge of the element until you see a thin gray line as a docking indicator.
- Click and hold the mouse button while the left border adjusts.
- Hover your mouse under the right edge of the table until you see a line similar to the one enclosing the pasted frame.
- release the mouse button.
The outer edges of the new text box now wrap around the object above it. As the width of one changes, the size of the other changes accordingly.
monitoring: These dynamic fitting links are indicated by a gray line as they are created. If you drag the edge of a text box to align it with a shape that think-cell does not position dynamically, such as a a chart or a native PowerPoint shape, a red line appears. This indicates that the dragged edge of the text box will be set to the position that aligns with the corresponding edge of the other shape (see for details on setting the position of an edgeLocking elements in position). This means that it stays in that position even if the other shape is moved or resized. To move and resize dynamically and statically positioned elements, you can use groups as explained ingrouping.
15.1.3Customize text boxes on slides
You can even customize text boxes on slides:
- Place a text box (A) on a slide.
- Place a text box (B) on another slide.
- Click and hold the left handle of the text box (B). Click and scroll the mouse wheel or pressupload pageÖpicture downuntil you see the slide with the text box (A). The outline of the text box (B) is grayed out.
- Drag the handle to align it with the left edge of the text box (A). A thin gray line is displayed as an adjustment indicator. release the mouse button.
- You are back on the original slide with the text box (B) whose left edge is now aligned with the left edge of the text box (A) on the other slide.
- Repeat the process for the right edge.
Now, like in the example where the two text boxes were on the same slide, if the position or width of one of the text boxes changes, the other changes with it, so they align horizontally even though they're on different slides, which makes it easier Creating slide layouts that remain consistent across slides without manual adjustments.
15.2Duplicate text boxes
Now that you've learned how to insert and customize think-cell text boxes, let's see how to duplicate them. There are several ways to do this, most of which are similar to the options you're familiar with when working with shapes in PowerPoint:
- You can duplicate think-cell text boxes by selecting and pressing themcontrol+D. The familiar orange frame appears for duplicate boxes and can be moved to your preferred nesting position. Click once to paste it there.
- You can usecontrol+Cmicontrol+vto paste a copy of the selected text boxes.
- Another popular PowerPoint option is to right-click and drag the border of selected text boxes. Release to position the duplicate.
- The same doubling can be achieved by holding downcontrolwhen dragging with the left mouse button.
- Another quick and easy way to paste a customized copy of existing rows or columns of text boxes is to click the small one Duplicate Buttons that appear when text boxes are selected.
15.3Delete text fields
If you want to delete individual text fields or entire lines or columns, mark them once or several times (seemultiple selection) and press theExtinguishButton. You can also right-click the selection and click the red button Extinguishin the think-cell context menu.
15.4Move text boxes
Now let's see how you can move an existing text box (or a selection of text boxes) to a different position. To do that:
- Left click on your frame to select it and start dragging. It is important to click in the frame and not in the text box as this would select the contents of the text box for text editing.
- Click on the text box and drag it to the new position. You will see different instant targets as you move your mouse.
- When you are happy with the position, release the mouse button to drop and dock the text box there.
you can also usecontrol+Xmicontrol+vto move a text box from one position to another.
Rearranging the columns of a table is an example of moving multiple text boxes. Just select all the text boxes in the column and drag them to the new position or presscontrol+Xmicontrol+vand then select the new location.
15,5Undo text fields or change instant links
Now that you've learned how text boxes wrap in different ways, let's look at how to undo them or change the wrapping connections. Both are easily possible. To unpack a text field:
- Click to select it.
- Click on one of the handles.
- Drag away from the other element the box is docked to and release.
- Repeat for other borders as needed.
You can also change the snap connection by dragging the handles to a new snap target. The gray lines of the alignment indicator help you to align the text box to another position of your choice.
Just release the mouse button when you are happy with the snap position.
15.6Set the same size for multiple text boxes
You can select and select multiple items Same sizeÖ same widthin the context menu of an element contained in the selection.
The elements are resized to have the same width.
To return to individual text box sizes, select one of the text boxes, click the double arrow and pressExtinguishÖ←.
15.7Structure of a complex example
All the basic interactions with think-cell's text fields have been described in the previous sections. As an example, we'll use them to create a complete slide with text boxes from scratch that will look like this:
- Start typing your first text box for the ribbon button The text box.
Enter your text and choose an appropriate fill color if needed. From now on, there is no longer an explicit reference between the steps to simply enter text or formatting changes.
- Usecontrol-Drag to duplicate the box until you get the desired number of boxes.
- Add a new text box at the top as a title and resize it to fit the full width of the five boxes below.
- Add fields below the five text fields using fields duplicate below Button. You can use the PowerPoint buttons on the to add a bulleted list to text boxeslargeTab when the text in the field is selected.
- Add a separate box below and snap it as a subheading only to the outside edges of the table above.
- Now duplicate this frame by pressingcontrol+Dand put it down.
- Use the alignment control in the floating toolbar to center the text in the selected fields.
- Right-click and drag the top box to copy it down. As you can see, think-cell does all the positioning of the text boxes automatically. Not a single box was moved manually.
- Drop some of the text boxes on top of each other to create space between them.
- Finally, select several text boxes with the column headers, right click on the selection and select same widthin the context menu. This means that all five columns have the same width.
15.8Defining a fixed size or locked position of elements
After you've created your slide from elements and content, you may want to manually adjust small layout details and decide the final position and dimensions of your slide elements. Let's go back to the previous example. Elements fill the entire slide and are centered on the slide.
Since there is some space between the text boxes, you might want to adjust the structure a bit by setting its size, or you can leave larger margins by setting the position explicitly.
15.8.1Set a fixed size
In PowerPoint, you can resize a shape by holding down the keycontrolbutton and drag its border. You can do the same in think-cell:
- Select all elements with the mouse.
- Quietcontrol, click and hold the handle in one of the corners, and drag to constrain the size of your text box border.
- release the mouse button.
There is now less space between the text boxes, while the overall structure is still centered on the slide.
Instead of choosing the size withcontrol-By dragging you can also enter the size directly:
- Select the item or items you want to resize
- Quietcontroland drag one of the handles on the blue border to set a fixed size.
- Click on the double arrow representing the fixed size
- Enter the desired size into the control.
As units, you can use points, units of length such as millimeters or inches, and fractions of the slide's height or width.
We recommend that you don't set a fixed size until you've added all of your content to the slide. To reset autosize based on your content, click the double arrow and pressExtinguishÖ←.
15.8.2Locking elements in position
To leave some margin next to the elements, you can lock the text boxes at specific positions:
- Select all items.
- Click on the small lock icon in the bottom left corner.
- Hold down the mouse button and drag to the position where you want the bottom edge of the element frame to be.
- Release the mouse button to close the latch and hold the items in place.
- Repeat for the left, right, or top margin as needed.
To get the most out of auto-layout, we recommend that you don't lock text boxes until you've added all of your content to the slide. To open a lock and reset the automatic positioning of the corresponding edges, simply click once on the closed lockor one of the handles on the line. Repeat for other closed locks as needed.
15.8.3Lock default positions
If Lock default positions option is enabled Tool menu, all think-cell layout elements are pasted with closed latches on all edges that do not snap to another edge. For a placed element without wrapped borders, this means that its size and position are completely fixed and will not adjust automatically. You are in the exact position shown in the embed preview, as indicated by the red lines.
Come on Lock default positions is on, dropping a handle in a location where it doesn't quickly connect also fixes the position of the corresponding edges at that location. This also applies to moving all edges at once by clicking and dragging the entire element: the corresponding edges keep their relative distances and snap to exactly where you drop them, except for those that end up on a different edge snap. This means you can resize and move think-cell elements in the same way as native PowerPoint shapes, while also defining the boundaries that you want to dynamically move and snap to each other.
If Lock default positions enabled, you can use the right mouse button to achieve the same effect as the left mouse button would have when the option is disabled. For example, when pasting an item, you can right-click to paste itwhicheach locked padlock can be automatically positioned and resized.
On the other hand, if the option isDisabled person, you can use the right mouse button to achieve the same effect that the left mouse button would have when the option is enabled. For example, you can right-drag a handle to anchor the corresponding frame to the position you dragged it to.