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Creating a go-to-page link

From: InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs

Video: Creating a go-to-page link

There are several different ways to make Hyperlinks that take you to a particular page, or some text on a page. For example, here we are looking at a table of contents for InDesign Magazine, and I want to make each of these headings a Hyperlink to a particular page. Well, because of the particular format of this page, we cannot automate it with the table of contents or the cross references feature, and that's too bad, because both of those features make the Hyperlinks for you. So instead, we are going to have to make the links the hard way, one at a time.

Creating a go-to-page link

There are several different ways to make Hyperlinks that take you to a particular page, or some text on a page. For example, here we are looking at a table of contents for InDesign Magazine, and I want to make each of these headings a Hyperlink to a particular page. Well, because of the particular format of this page, we cannot automate it with the table of contents or the cross references feature, and that's too bad, because both of those features make the Hyperlinks for you. So instead, we are going to have to make the links the hard way, one at a time.

I am going to select this text down here by triple-clicking on it, and then pressing Command+2 or Ctrl+2 on Windows to jump into 200%. Now I am going to show you two different ways to make this kind of link. Both of them use the Hyperlinks panel. So I'll open the Hyperlinks Panel, I'll select New Hyperlink from the Panel menu, and I'll choose not URL, not file, but page. This is going to be a page link. And I can specify exactly what page this text is going to be linking to. Let me move this out of the way a little bit, so we can see that this is going to link to page 32.

So I'll simply type 32 up here in the Page field, and now I can choose a Zoom Setting. For example, it can be Fixed, or Fit the whole page in the Window and so on. This is relevant for PDFs that I export, it's not relevant if I export this as a SWF file. SWFs just ignore that, but it does work in a PDF. Anyway, this is going to go to page 32 in my document. I'll click OK, and I can see that the page Hyperlink has been added to the Hyperlinks panel. Now if I export this as a PDF and click on that text, it will take me directly to page 32, but there is a significant problem here. What if that article changes, what if I add pages or move pages around in my document, that article might not be on page 32 anymore. These Hyperlinks do not get updated automatically. So I would have to go in there and edit each of these Hyperlinks to make sure it's on the right page.

Fortunately, there is a different kind of link that will update automatically, depending on where the article actually is. To make that kind of link, I need to go to the article itself first, and add a text anchor there. So because I've already made this Hyperlink, I can use that as a little navigation trick. I am going to select that, and then click on this right arrow at the bottom, that will actually take me to that page in this document automatically. It's kind of handy these left and right arrows, the left one goes to the original parts I think that is linking, and the right arrow goes to what it's linking to, so finally a little navigation trick there.

I am going to scroll over here with my Option+Space Bar or Alt+Space Bar, grabber-hand trick, and I am going to place the cursor at the beginning of this title. Now I want to put a text anchor here, that I am going to be linking to. It has to go inside of a text frame. So to do that I'll go to the Hyperlinks panel, and I'll choose not New Hyperlink, but New Hyperlink Destination. I wish they called this a new text anchor or something, it'd be easier to find. But in this case we have to say, New Hyperlink Destination, and then we choose a type of destination, in this case I am choosing Text Anchor. You can call it anything you want, I am going to call it My conditional text article, since that what's happens, actually it's not {{Pariah's}} but it's a great article, you should check it out.

So let me go ahead and click OK, and I am going to go back to the table of contents which I can do by choosing this Hyperlink in the Hyperlinks panel, clicking on the left arrow, that will take me right back to that page. Again, a little navigation trick there using the Hyperlinks panel, and I am going to delete this Hyperlink, because I don't want a page Hyperlink anymore. So I will just select it and click on my little Trashcan icon. Yes, let's get rid of it. So it's completely gone now. The Hyperlink is gone. So now let's add a new Hyperlink. This time it's going to be a Text Anchor Hyperlink. I'll choose New Hyperlink from the Panel menu, and I won't choose a Page link, instead I am going to make it a Text Anchor link, and now I can choose which text anchor I want to choose here. There is only one text anchor in this document right now. So obviously that's the one that's going to be chosen in that pop-up menu. I'll make sure that my Appearance is set to Invisible Rectangle, because I don't want an ugly rectangle around the text on my page, and then I'll click OK.

I'll click inside that paragraph, and there we go. I now have a Hyperlink, here in the Hyperlinks panel, that will take me right to that article, no matter where that article is in the document. Let's try it out. I'll click on the Go To Page button, that right arrow, and you see, it takes me right to that article. And again, this will work in the exported PDF or in an exported SWF file, either way. By the way, if I go to the Type menu, and choose Show Hidden Characters, we can see that text anchor in here, it's those two little dots, or I can go to the Edit menu, and choose Edit in Story Editor. And in Story Editor I can actually see that text anchor right here, it's that little icon that looks like a target. So that's what that this.

Now both Page Hyperlinks and Text Anchor Hyperlinks are useful, but when it comes to linking to some text that may move to a different page, well, the Text Anchor Hyperlink is definitely the better choice.

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