Adobe Illustrator 24.3 (CC 2020) Update

Bobby H

Adobe released the latest point release update to Illustrator CC 2020 today. The ".3" update adds some pretty useful new features for manipulating type. This builds on other features from the .1 and .2 releases in March and June. The AI 24.3 update may be the last substantial update for CC 2020 since the Adobe MAX conference is set for October. Traditionally Adobe unveils the new version of CC at the MAX conference.

Font height variations are now available in four choices: Em Box, Cap Height, x-Height or ICF Box. The cap height and x-height options will be particularly useful in sign design.

There is a new alignment option for aligning based on glyph bounds instead of the blue bounding box around the letters. This allows more of a CorelDRAW style behavior with aligning type objects. The new Snap to Glyph feature allows object snapping to various letter features (baseline, x-height line, cap height line, etc). Make sure Smart Guides is turned on into order to use the snapping feature. Some new alignment options have been added for area text objects.

Unrelated to type, a new Unlock Objects on Canvas feature was added. You can now lock or unlock objects directly without having go to the layers panel. The feature has to be turned on in preferences (go to Preferences > Selection & Anchor Display > Select and Unlock Objects on Canvas). You'll see a locked or unlocked padlock icon on object bounding boxes when the feature is enabled.

For more details visit this page on Adobe's web site:
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Bobby H

I like the Align to Glyph Bounds option the user can turn on in the Align palette. That makes the alignment functions disregard the box surrounding the text. You can type a dummy letter like "E", align it to another object and then type out the desired text. It's similar to an approach I've used in CorelDRAW.

One alignment option still missing: an Align to Baseline command. You can't simply select a point text object and align the text object to the top or bottom of another object using its baseline. That's something I do in CorelDRAW frequently. On the other hand, the new Snap to Glyph functions (6 button options in the Character palette) are quite powerful and open a lot of creative options. You have to manually move the text object into the desired position. But with Smart Guides active the text object will snap according to baseline, x-height or glyph bounds. One really neat trick is you can right click on a specific letter in a live text object and make the smart guide function work relative to that letter. That can eliminate the need of typing out a dummy letter to position a text object precisely.
I agree the Align to Glyph Bounds is very helpful. That and the "cap height" font height setting will be very useful as well. Been wanting all of these features for many years.