Alignment lines


#1

I came across this frustrating behaviour. You can see I try to move the label, and see three different blue centre lines I can choose from.

It’s not clear which of the blue lines relates to which object on screen. I know I can select the two objects in the centre and use the alignment controls, but this is a case of switching contexts, which is even more frustrating when I’m quickly moving things around with the mouse.

Here’s an animated GIF showing the problem:


#2

Yeah, I can imagine that would be frustrating @ahobday. I’m sorry about that my friend.

Would it be possible to see the complete mockup? That way we can see everything in context, and we can work towards doing something better here.

If that works for you, shoot me an email with the mockup/project, and we can go from there.

Sorry again for the frustration, Anthony. I really appreciate you bringing it to our attention.


#3

Thanks for sending your project over, Anthony.

I spoke with the devs, and the thinking right now is looking into a keyboard shortcut (specifically on a mouse drag) that would snap a control to the next most-local control.

Does that sound like it would help you to work more quickly?


#4

That sounds like it would help!

One downside is that it’s not obvious that the feature exists.

I was using Mockups for months before I discovered that you could select things and ignore background controls by holding down “Alt”. Once I discovered that it was a life-saver, but I wonder how many people still haven’t discovered it?

My own idea was that the lines would make it clear which item it was centring with. For example, the blue line might only extend to the outside edge of the object that it is aligning with, rather than extending to the edge of the canvas. Something to consider!


#5

That’s a good idea too. I’ll add that to the list of things to discuss.

And yeah, that was my feeling about the selecting two items shortcut. It works, but it’s not obvious, and may even slow you down. That’s why I thought that maybe just a drag modifier would be quicker.

Sorry again for the frustration, my friend. Snapping is a hard thing to do right, and it’s something we still need to do some work on. :slight_smile:


#6

No problem - Balsamiq support is leagues ahead of most customer support.

Even when the company disagrees that something is a problem, it feels like it’s been considered.

But I’m sure it’s an extra challenge, since your customers are mostly software designers and probably think they know better!


#7

That ALT-thing is a life-saver indeed! And I’m using Balsamiq for years now, whish I had known before … Thanks for mentioning it! Hey folks @balsamiq, are there any other life-saver tips and tricks?


#8

Sure thing, @Ilse!

You may want to check the Tips, Tricks, and Workarounds on our Tutorials page. We also published this blogpost that mentions a few hidden powers.

Hope this helps! :slight_smile:


#9

My 5 cents about rulers and guides here: Ruler and guides