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Scott Wallace

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    Need More Info  ·  Yogesh Sharma responded

    Please share your thoughts on the following:

    1. Would it make sense to have a separate desktop app, just to create charts, and bring them inside Illustrator or InDesign? It may not be on cloud.

    2. Or would you rather have us work on building it within Illustrator?


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    Scott Wallace commented  · 

    Adobe might be allowing Datylon to access code and perform R&D as a beta startup just to measure success and work the bugs outside its house name. Should this prove to fall short, it can be fixed there until it does. If/when adoption has reached a certain mass, Adobe could "acquire" this into their interface, clean it up visually. A bolt-on solution isn't ideal in a "homogenized" Adobe world. But it's awesome to have another option in the meantime.

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    Scott Wallace commented  · 

    Great work on these d3 charts! Also thx for the added workflow detail, this helps a lot. Mapping your process to ours – everything is great until the chart has to "unlink" with the data connection when we hit SVG crowbar, then export to AI for cosmetics and finally placement into Indesign. There is value as the data is tied directly to the basic chart, removing manual cut/paste errors which is great. However, we've now lost the link to data when we hit illustrator, after cosmetics are applied. So what happens when the Splunk (or other) data server engine updates the Excel file, after the chart is built and placed into Indesign layout? We would then have to build the chart all over again, we are still manual. Here is our "end-state-goal" – to be able to have Co. data fed from Splunk (or other) into .xlsx format (or other), have Illustrator link to that file and stay linked to that file, while all manor of unique cosmetics are applied to it. Then when the data gets updated, we get a notification it's out of data as far down the chain as indesign even! The chart remains tied to the live data until packaged for printer. In fact, the data file links (.xlsx, .txt etc.) are included in the links folder when packaged ... that sort of thing. Of course all of the interface/functionality details would be modernized as well (doesn't have to be all at once). So that's our hope! We keep the creativity of AI, but add the robust d3/Excel type features, and the data is always linkable.

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    Scott Wallace commented  · 

    Thanks for the FT Vocab, and d3 reference, a deep resource for sure! Especially for those .js enabled and on the programmer side. Even though these charts may be printed technically, they do not offer the same hands-on visual creative design and control as AI for print/PDF design. Illustrator fuses designer creativity with data and metrics. If data retrieval, linking, initial render and options were modernized, matching the range of data visualizations as Excel, you'd have a major winner. As a previous poster mentioned, data is controlled and protected, and should not sit on random cloud servers outside a users protected network. So glad there is a U turn on that. If Microsoft wanted to, they could fill this hole with their Excel engine. Just fill-out the designer features, and make their charts export into specific vector sizes and formats, for print purposes.

    Scott Wallace supported this idea  · 
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    Scott Wallace commented  · 

    I work for a Fortune 500 Co. We produce an annual report with ~100 charts by hand. There is a major demand for:
    • Links to data for automated update and reduction of human cut/paste errors
    • Mirroring of Excel in terms of basic functioning and control over elements like trend lines, inverse graphs.
    • No bugs, such as scales that go out of alignment upon refresh, causing rework.

    This is a perfect candidate for a separate app. I think when it is framed as a separate app, the features are more robust. When it is framed as a part of illustrator the tendency is to limit function so as not to overwhelm the basic user. My suggestion is to create a new app, that is highly robust, then also update illustrator or even remove the charting function altogether, so people realize the two really should not be under the same roof anymore. The big sell is that you are freeing a ton of people and orgs their greatest resource "Time."

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