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Duplicate bulleted lists in Keynote using Preview Apps
Much to my disappointment, Keynote 2 still doesn't allow for more than one set of automatic bullet points. (Shame, Apple! Why do you insist on crippling what is otherwise such a great piece of software?). And, though the OmniGraffle-based solution offered by presumably still works, I'd rather not buy OmniGraffle just for that one function.

As it turns out, though, it's possible to do basically the same thing using Preview. Note that this approach takes bullet points made in Keynote, and turns them into exact PDF copies. This allows you to use your single box of bullet points for something else, but the text in the PDF copies isn't directly editable -- so if you want to change that text, you've got to start over again. Fortunately, the approach is quite straightforward:
  1. Within Keynote, make the bullet points you want to copy.
  2. Select the entire text box with all the bullet points in it. If your text insertion point is in the text box, this requires clicking somewhere outside the box, then clicking the text box again -- the resizing handles must be visible around the edges of the selection), and copy it.
  3. Switch to Preview and make a new document (File: New from Clipboard, or just Command-N). The new document will appear, complete with your bullet points.
  4. Select any or all of the bullet points you want to use by choosing the Selection marquee from the "tool mode" button set -- or choose "Select Tool" in the Tools menu, or just hit command-3.
  5. Copy and paste the selection back to Keynote.
This "make a PDF by making a new document in Preview" feature is a very useful (and, I think, undocumented) one. It also allows you to select individual bits of other PDFs and make new PDFs out of them.)

[robg adds: We've covered Preview's PDF cut-and-paste capabilities before, but this is a good use for them. Keynote's inability to have more than one bulleted list on a slide is a fairly glaring oversight. This workaround will let you at least display two bulleted boxes on one slide, but you won't have any "build" control over the second group of bullets -- since it's just a graphic, it will come in as an object. Making both boxes build can be done a number of ways, but they're all a bit of a pain (the tutorial linked above explains one way to do it).]
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Duplicate bulleted lists in Keynote using Preview
Authored by: osxpounder on Mar 10, '05 03:57:23PM

I'm guessing they didn't build that feature in because they decided that using more than one set of bullet points on a slide was not a good presentation practice.

You might want to re-examine your style with that in mind, even if you disagree at first -- try both ways with a test audience that resembles your intended audience [i.e., not the mates in your office, who already know what you're trying to communicate] and get opinions from them.


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Duplicate bulleted lists in Keynote using Preview
Authored by: derPlau on Mar 21, '05 07:22:31PM

Oh, please. Even if this were true (which I seriously doubt), it'd be a BS decision on Apple's part. Software should enable me to do what I want, not restrict me to some software engineer's idea of how to build a good presentation. I've been giving talks and presentations for more than 10 years, and I know what works & what doesn't (and, yes, I'm a devotee of Edward Tufte, and I agree with most of his complaints about PowerPoint [and Keynote] presentations -- and I work hard to avoid the many pitfalls of computer-based presentation.)

Apple has truly crippled their software with this arbitrary exclusion -- particularly when you add in the fact that bullet points all have to appear in sequence, with no way to add other types of builds in between bullet points (e.g., if you've got figures or tables to emphasize particular bullet points, they all have to appear either before or after the entire set of bullets. You can't have a figure that emphasizes the second of three bullet points appear at the same time as the second bullet point).

This isn't some Noble (but horribly misguided) Effort On Apple's Part To Improve The Quality Of Presentations Everywhere -- it's either some combination of laziness and cluelessness on the part of the software designers, or a noble (but horribly misguided) effort on Apple's part to stick to its philosophy of keeping things as simple as possible for the end-user.

Sometimes concepts are complex; and in such cases a presenter needs the option of more complex information design. If Keynote's support for native PDF didn't make it infinitely better than PowerPoint for graphics and equations, I'd have ditched it completely.

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Duplicate bulleted lists in Keynote using Preview
Authored by: jonathanfosborne on Jun 06, '05 07:16:12AM

I have just realised this problem with Keynote and its inability to have more than one bulleted list and wasted some time trying to get around it. It mars what is otherwise an excellent package. It is not a question of whether it is good style or not - the purpose of a good software package is to provide an means of allowing users the maximum flexibility - including making style mistakes if they want to! Does anybody know of another fix or whether they are intending to upgrade it?

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