The Omni Group Announces OmniGraffle 4 and OmniGraffle Professional 4

Seattle, WA — May 25, 2005 — The Omni Group today announced the first
public beta release of OmniGraffle 4. The new version is a major update to
the diagramming and drawing application, and offers a streamlined user
interface as well as many new features under the categories of
brainstorming, drafting, import and export, and document management.

Some highlights from OmniGraffle 4 include a new dynamic outline view,
diagram styles, a Bezier curve drawing tool, and greatly improved import
and export options. OmniGraffle Professional 4 adds master canvases, notes,
tables, document scale, improved Visio XML import and export, and SVG
export, and more.

More information about the upcoming releases and links to the current beta
version are available at


Updated interface
Eighteen inspectors have been consolidated to three powerful inspector
windows, without losing any critical functionality. Each one has tab-like
buttons for switching between inspectors. The new utility drawer contains
the new outline view, and also lists canvases and their layers.

Outline view
Fire up the Outline view to quickly jot down thoughts or topics – while
you’re doing that, OmniGraffle is creating objects in the main window that
can be automatically laid out as you enter your data. Even the notes you
create get associated with objects, and export as OmniOutliner notes if you
so choose.

Diagram styles
When you enter text information in the Outline view, the graphical objects
that are created can be styled and restyled instantly the way you choose.
OmniGraffle can associate a different style with each level in your
outline, so all your level one items can be represented as blue diamonds,
your level two items as purple horseshoes, and so on. You can even use
OmniGraffle’s outline styles as filters if you import OmniOutliner
documents, by mapping styles to your OmniOutliner document structure.
Create your own styles by laying out hierarchical objects in the document
window and saving them as an outline style, or use our built-in styles.

Bezier curves
Traditionally only found in expensive, professional illustrating programs,
OmniGraffle’s new Bezier curve drawing tool allows you to easily create
custom shapes with lines made up of curves, straight lines, and control
points. A Bezier curve allows you to specify not only the end points of a
shape’s line, but also the direction of the line as it passes through the
end points – with a little practice, you’ll have almost unlimited control
over the objects you design.

LiveLink support
OmniGraffle 4 now supports LiveLink, an open source technology designed to
facilitate content management. With LiveLink, when you copy graphics from
OmniGraffle to another application which supports LiveLink, you won’t just
be copying a PDF picture of your diagram, you’ll also be making an editable
copy of the diagram itself.

Improved import/export: PICT, PDF, OmniOutliner Nearly all existing import
and export options have been greatly refined and improved. A new vector
PICT export format is available: OmniGraffle can now both copy as vector
PICT and export to that format, so you can more easily copy and paste
between OmniGraffle diagrams and Carbon applications such as Microsoft Word
or PowerPoint. Hyperlinks are now supported on export to PDF, as is
exporting multiple canvas Graffle files as a single, multiple-page PDF
file. EPS export now has a preview image associated with it. Finally,
OmniOutliner support has been updated, with options to import multiple
column information, numbering, notes, and more.

OmniGraffle Professional 4 includes many new in-depth features designed to
facilitate workflow and improve presentation options.

Master canvases
A master canvas can be applied to any canvas in your document, where it
acts like a kind of background layer. Once you create a master canvas, you
can drag and drop it within your document to apply its styles and elements
there. A canvas with a master applied displays the contents of the master
behind its own contents, so you can easily re-use certain designs or
control the placement of text and graphics.

Notes are a handy way to store arbitrary information about objects in a
diagram. An object with a note displays the note in a tag when you rest the
pointer over it for a moment; click the note inspector to view and edit the
note. You can use rich text in notes, so they can be styled and include
links to websites. Notes can be imported from or exported to OmniOutliner,
and they also show up in presentation mode.

Now you can create any shape and convert to a table with the “make table”
menu item. Add rows and columns just by dragging handles or using keyboard
shortcuts; select individual cells by clicking your table once, then
clicking the cell. For the technically inclined: tables have made it much
easier to graphically display information from your imported EOModeler,
Project Builder, and Interface Builder files.

Document scale
Use OmniGraffle Professional’s new ruler with automatic dimensioning when
you’re drawing something to scale, scale being the relationship between the
size of the page and the size of the objects being drawn. You can set up a
scale such as “1 in = 2 ft” or “100 px = 1 km” and OmniGraffle takes care
of the rest – no need to do the math yourself.

Visio XML import/export, SVG export
OmniGraffle Professional 4 now uses the recently-opened Visio XML schemas,
so there have been many improvements to the Visio XML import/export
function, and some of the newer feature sets (such as the Bezier drawing
tool) bring OmniGraffle’s Visio support to a higher level. Additional,
there is now support for exporting to the Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG)
format. SVG can display OmniGraffle documents beautifully at any size,
whether you’re viewing them on the screen of a mobile phone or on a large
print banner.


The Omni Group is targeting early summer for the final version of the
software. OmniGraffle 4 will cost $79.95, and OmniGraffle 4 Professional
will cost $149.95. Upgrades from OmniGraffle 3 to 4 will cost $29.95, and
upgrades from OmniGraffle 3 Professional to OmniGraffle 4 Professional will
cost $49.95.

Any OmniGraffle 3 purchases made on or after April 25 will be upgraded for
free to OmniGraffle 4 when it ships.

More pricing information is available at

The Omni Group develops productivity applications exclusively for Mac OS X.
The Omni Group is the developer of OmniWeb, a web browser offering far more
than standard browsing features which won a 2004 Macworld Editor’s Choice
Award; OmniOutliner, an outlining and organizational tool which was awarded
first place, US category, in O’Reilly’s 2003 Mac OS X Innovators Contest;
and OmniGraffle, a diagramming application that won both a Macworld
Editor’s Choice Award and a MacUser UK Maxine Award in 2003. Founded in
1993, The Omni Group is located in Seattle, WA.