Sometimes the biggest time savers are in front of your eyes the whole time but you can’t see them. Mostly because this great features are so part of the system that nobody actually talks about them anymore.

[frame_right][/frame_right]One of this hidden features is the incorporated calculator in Adobe Creative Suite. It’s not documented that every value field can actually do some basic calculations and transformations. So if you want to expand a rectangle by 5 pt you just select the rectangle, add a “+ 5 pt” in the width field in your toolbar and hit Enter. You can even use different units to do the calculations – cool isn’t it.

[frame_left][/frame_left]The operations you can do is addition, subtraction, multiply and divide. But remember you can make only one operation at a time.

Another cool way to use this feature is for font sizes. If you know are doing a poster for example and you know that you need the font to be 5 cm in height you can enter it right away, no need to transform centimeters in points.

The available abbreviations for the units are:

  • Points – pt
  • Picas – p
  • Pixel – px
  • Centimeter – cm
  • Millimeter – mm
  • Inch – Inch (in English) Zoll (in German)
  • Cicerco – c
  • Agate – ag

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