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In Acrobat X Essential Training, author Anne-Marie Concepción demonstrates how to create, modify, review, and share PDFs in Adobe Acrobat X Standard or Pro. Starting with a tour of the new panels-based interface, the course covers the basics of the software, such as creating and customizing PDFs, searching, editing text and graphics, and extracting PDF content to use in other programs. Also included are tutorials on creating forms, inserting interactivity and rich media, using the prepress tools, combining PDFs with other types of files to create customized portfolios, and ensuring document security. Exercise files accompany the course.
One of the most powerful and fun to use interactive tools in Adobe Acrobat is the Button tool. The Button tool can be found in the tools pane under Contents. There's a Button, that says, okay, if you were watching the other video that I did about Links, a Button can act just like a link, except it also has more properties. So you could call it like a superlink. Like a Link, you can use the Button tool to drag an area over any part of your page. So when people click on it something happens. For example, I could drag the button over the title of this document, and we will just leave the button Field Name as is, but if you go All Properties and come over to Appearance, you could say the Border Color is none, and the Fill Color is none, then in Actions you can go ahead choose the action that you'd like to apply, just like the link, Execute a menu item, Open a file, Open a web link.
The Trigger is a click. So a mouse click is equivalent to Mouse Up. There are other triggers that you could select, but they really make not that much sense. So in other words, in this way a button is exactly the same as a link. Now let's see how much more powerful it could be. Let's close out of here and I am just going to go ahead and delete this button that we just created. So I am right-clicking and choosing Delete. This time I am going to make a button to the right of the headline by dragging rectangularly with the button, go to All Properties, and now I can actually give a Fill Color and a Border Color to this.
Let's say that we wanted to add a button on the cover page of this PDF that prompted somebody to open up another PDF. Like say, the verification form that they need to fill out indicating that they've read the manual. So we want to give this a color, so they know that there is actually a button here and let's go ahead and let's try this color orange. That's good. Then the Font Size, we are going to put a label right on here and what Font Size do we want? Well I'm going to make something really large. Not limited to this dropdown menu. Let's say 24, and we'll leave the text color Black.
Then the options here are, what do you want to show, the Label only in labels which you type here? Or do you want to show the label on top of an icon, and an icon is artwork that you can bring in, which we'll do in a little bit. But for now, let's just choose Label only, and we will say Label is, Open the other PDF. Then the Action will be to actually Open a file. You're going to open a file and then you want to say Add. So which file do you want to add? We are going to add the Employee Handbook Verification file.
You get your choice of what should happen when somebody clicks that button and the new document opens. Should it replace the current documents? That would be existing window. Should it open a second document? That would be New window. I will tell you in my experience, it's always a good idea to say New Window. Because if you say Existing window, people often are like, what happened to my old document? So New Window is good. Or Window set by user preference, users can set this up in their preferences file, what happens when a link opens up a new document, but I always like to override that and say always open in New window.
It looks like our type is a little too big, so I am going to come back over here to Appearance and choose Font Size. But also in general the button name is fine. This is used internally when you need to refer to this button. In some other part of Acrobat, nobody ever actually sees that in the PDF, but the tooltip they do see. So if their hover their mouse cursor over this button, they will get a little tooltip and whatever you put in here, is what appears. So I will say like, Click to open the form PDF and then click Close.
So now let's choose our Hand tool to see how it works. So there is our button, with the color, and our text, and if we hover over here, the tooltip opens up. Then if we click, the PDF opens. But wait! That's not all. So buttons are useful for adding Actions where there's no content, you can't make a hyperlink or a regular link on top of some existing artwork or text. They are also useful, because you can import your own artwork as you create the button, and they're very easy to duplicate on multiple pages.
To me this is one of the most useful aspects of a button. Like say for example, we are looking at a 22-page PDF, and let's say that you're not sure that the people reading this PDF will know how to move from page to page. It could happen. So you would like to put little arrows on the top saying, next page, previous page, that people can click, because they're used to doing that in web sites. You would do that with a button. So I am going to take the Button tool, drag out an area, say, at the very top of page where I want my right-pointing arrow to go. And I will call this one NextPage, as the Field Name.
Go to Properties. I will go ahead and say Click to advance one page. For the Appearance, I don't want any Fill Color or Border Color. So I am choosing No Color for this. For the Options, I am going make the Label Next Page. So I want to use that. But I want to use an icon. So actually I am going to choose Icon only. I don't actually want a label. All I want is this little arrow artwork that I have already created that people will click on the arrow and it will go to next page.
So that's what an icon is. So I click Choose Icon, where is the icon? So I click Browse and I have a folder here called artwork. Now initially nothing shows up, because it's only showing you PDF files, but it can convert to PDF on the fly. So any of these formats can be converted into a button. I have some PNG files. There is the right arrow. There it is. This looks good. So that's what our icon is going to look like. Then the Actions would be that we wanted to use a menu item, which is to go to the next page.
So View > Page Navigation > Next Page. Let's try that. Use our Hand tool. There's our little icon, click to advance one page. There we go! But now we need that on every single page, right? So let's go back. Let's take our select object tool. Remember that's how you select interactive elements. I am going to right-click and choose Duplicate. It says Duplicate this field on which pages? One of my favorite features of Acrobat right here. The first time I heard about this, I'm like, oh, what a pain, having to paste it on every single page, but nope.
Put it on every single page. Let's see if that worked. Next page, next page, next page. Perfectly! So you just have to do the same thing for previous page, and you're good to go. That's why I love buttons. They're just like links, except they're superlinks, and they have that really powerful duplicate command.
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