Penta Digital, Inc. July 16, 2008


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News From
John McAuley
Idea of
the Week





Add Some Sparkle
A Message From John McAuley
The Way I See It

A Not So Trivial Pursuit

In 1979, two friends – Scott Abbott and Chris Haney – sat down to enjoy a game of Scrabble. As they unpacked the board, they discovered that some of the pieces were missing. Rather than look for another game to play, they decided they should try creating a board game of their own. Two years later, the duo introduced the first prototype of what would become Trivial Pursuit.

At the time they started working on Trivial Pursuit, neither Abbott nor Haney had any experience creating games. Abbott was a sports editor for the Canadian Press in Montreal, and Haney was a photo editor for the Montreal Gazette.

The game itself met initially with a tepid response. Abbott, Haney, and their business partners – Chris's brother, John Haney, and friend, Ed Werner – sank just about everything they had into its development. The quartet pushed hard to get it released and saw their dreams come true in 1983, when sales in both Canada and the United States topped the million mark. The following year proved even more successful, as Trivial Pursuit soon became a household name.

At the time, Trivial Pursuit was viewed as an overnight success. In truth that “night” had been long, hard, and fraught with anxiety. Here's the way I see it: Overnight successes seldom happen overnight. They typically take time and involve a fair amount of sacrifice, sweat, hard work, and tears.

At Penta Digital, we understand the work you've put into building your company or career, and we realize it certainly has been no trivial pursuit. So whether you're still struggling through the overnight – or enjoying the light of the dawning day – give us a call. We want to help you look good on paper.


John McAuley
Idea of the Week
Add Some Sparkle to Your Next Design With the Illustrator Symbolism Tool

Symbols are art objects that can be used multiple times in Adobe Illustrator documents. Imagine creating effortless, eye-catching designs simply by using typography, shapes, colors, and a few simple effects. That's the power the symbolism tool provides. Using predesigned symbols will save you time and open doors to some very interesting techniques you can apply to your current design projects.

To get started with the symbolism tool, click the Windows tab located in the top menu bar and select Symbols. A new menu box designated just for symbols will appear. This is where you'll find all of the preprogrammed symbols available to use. Existing symbols in the program's library include symbols that lend themselves to nature, shapes, business, sports, and much more.

Open the Symbols Library and select the symbols you'd like to work with, then prepare to have some fun with the symbol sprayer tool. Select Symbol Sprayer from the Tools menu on the left-hand side of your screen.

Determine where you want your symbols to go, and simply click on that area of the canvas to add the selected symbols to your document.

Sure, you can click once and only have a single instance of the selected symbols appear, but the symbol sprayer is so much more fun than that! The sprayer works on your digital canvas similar to a can of spray paint. Click and hold your mouse button, and multiple instances of the same objects will appear. Move the cursor around the canvas to place the objects in different locations as the tool sprays. In a matter of seconds, your canvas will be covered in objects.

Placing symbols on the canvas is only the beginning. There's so much more digital design fun to have with Illustrator's symbolism tool. Other functions available when working with the symbolism tool include:

Working with Illustrator's symbolism tool is fun and easy. It's a great way to add a lot of life to a design without much time or effort. Imagine creating an ocean full of fish or a field full of butterflies almost instantly.

Just be careful. It's easy to get carried away. So no matter what your design project calls for, keep the Illustrator symbolism tool in mind. It's a secret weapon every designer should have in their arsenal.



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