Sidebar Tip: Zoom and Scroll to Selection

In large documents it’s relatively easy to lose an object or group that you definitely, definitely created….but was it in this corner, or that one?

In OmniGraffle 3, the Unified Sidebar holds a lot of shortcuts. Unsure where a group of objects is on the Canvas? Long tap, select Zoom or Scroll to Selection, and you’re there!

Facebook Ads, UML-times-three, and more on Stenciltown

Stenciltown continues to grow with solid UML additions, a template for Facebook ads, and more.

First, Jevopi uploaded a UML collection featuring v2.1 class, activity, use case, sequence, and component diagrams.

Eric Wu added a Growth Gauge diagram that feature Growth Loops / Agile Cycles and UML & Flow Diagrams.

An additional UML stencil, something we partnered with UX Kits to style, was also just added. This is the version you’ll find inside OmniGraffle 3 for iOS by default, too.

Finally, it’s easier to work on a variety of Facebook ads when you have a template! We just started doing some of our own ads, so we created a stencil for ‘em. We think this Facebook Photo Ad stencil will be handy to more than just us.

OmniGraffle 7.4 out now!

Check for updates to get the latest version of OmniGraffle for Mac!

This is the first release of OmniGraffle with Omni Automation: use JavaScript within the app to automate object layout, set canvas data, create an animated solar system (because why not!), or whatever else you can come up with. In Pro, you can bundle scripts and assets into Plug-Ins for common tasks like changing metadata and colors, or exporting all of your document’s deliverables with a click. Check out—a Sal Soghoian joint—for more.

We’ve also added and clarified our canvas types. OmniGraffle 7.4 now has three canvas sizing modes: Fixed, Flexible, and Infinite. We think these three specific types make it a lot easier to pick exactly what you need, especially for new folks.

  • Fixed should be used when you have very specific constraints to satisfy.
  • Flexible expands into whichever direction you can go, by adding more “canvas” whenever the edge is reached. (You can choose those directions in the Canvas Size inspector, too.)
  • Infinite doesn’t even care about an edge — you’ll never see the canvas break.

Also included are bug fixes and improvements. Check the release notes for everything!

Stenciltown home to all previous OmniGraffle 5 & 6 stencils

Occasionally we’ll redesign and replace older stencils—with something newer—inside OmniGraffle. Templates, too. For instance, OmniGraffle 7 featured newer stencils that we collaborated with UX Kits on: Colors, UML, Connections, etc.

But there’s no reason to hide those (localized!) stencils from the world.

Need a map of Africa? Search Stenciltown now! Information Architecture? Stenciltown has it.

As well as:

Use a Shared Layer with Data Variables to get a Header & Footer

OmniGraffle comes with a set of data variables that have various levels of dynamicity. (That word works, right? Good.) They change based on each page or canvas number, what you’ve titled the canvas, a line’s length — things like that. And! Couple these variables with a shared layer to pull off headers and footers for each canvas, page, or layer.

  1. Create a new shared layer—each object or bit of text you’d like shared with other canvases should be here.
  2. Add text to your layer or add text to an object in the layer; select Edit->Insert Variable->Page Number (or whatever!).
  3. If you’re just starting your Graffle, use Duplicate to add more canvases that include the Shared Layer. If you’ve already finished and found this searching for a fast way to create headers(!), drag the Shared Layer to each canvas you’d like to add it to.

That’s it! Easy, flexible, and ready to save you some time.

Use Distortion Effect to “censor” an image before sharing

Removing sensitive information from screenshots, images, or documents is easy—and sharing the result is even easier with Copy as PNG.

Let’s say your image is already on the canvas in OmniGraffle. (Though if it isn’t, just drag the file right on top.)

First, draw a regular old object as close to your final size as you can manage. You can always resize.

Next, using the Fill inspector, set a Distortion Effect—typically using Pixelate with a value of 20 gives off the right impression for a censored image! (Though increase it if the goal is to not give off any impression of the subject.)

Finally, select everything you’d like to share and select Copy As PNG from the shortcut menu. Boom, paste, done.

Censoring a photo with a pixelated object
Censoring a photo with a pixelated object.



Presenting with Artboards using Presentation Mode [PRO]

Included in the latest version of OmniGraffle, v7.3, is the ability to create and present your objects, charts, and canvases using Artboard Layers. Previously, Presentation Mode was limited to Canvases; with Artboards, OmniGraffle will zoom in on to the exact border of your Artboard which means a lot more flexibility.

And because Artboards can be used to slice and dice your Canvas however you want, they can be used to present the same object a billion different ways. Check this out:

Also included: panning, zooming, and a sidebar that lists both canvases and artboards.

Omni’s own UI Kit, ready for download

Make mockups faster than ever with a complete UI Kit. We recently commissioned UX Kits to put together a complete stencil of UI components for the web. The result is a feature-complete, attractive set that covers the spectrum.

Complete with all the basics, like form fields and headers, grids and buttons, and loaded with more: navigation, footers, hero images, widgets, media, community and social content, and commerce.

Download the stencil and get started.