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InDesign Insider Training: Interactive PDFs

Navigation buttons


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InDesign Insider Training: Interactive PDFs

with David Blatner

Video: Navigation buttons

If you're familiar with hyperlinks and HTML, you know that they can look different depending on their state. For example, they'll have one look most of the time and a different look when you move your cursor over them called a hover or roll over state. The buttons are similar, each button can have up to three different looks. For example, this Portfolio button, one of our navigation buttons, looks like this normally, it's just white. But as soon as I place my cursor over it, it changes to purple. That's the rollover state. When I click down on it, you'll see that it highlights. I'm holding the Mouse button down right now so you can see that it's highlighting. Then I'll let go of the Mouse button and you'll see that it goes back to its rollover state.

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InDesign Insider Training: Interactive PDFs
2h 22m Intermediate Jul 23, 2013 Updated Jan 17, 2014

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While PDFs can be used for printing, they also have interactive features that make them great for forms, brochures, and prototypes. In this course, InDesign insider David Blatner tells you what interactive PDFs are, why they're so useful, and how to make them yourself with Adobe InDesign and Acrobat. Learn to make hyperlinks to websites, other pages in your document, and email; add buttons that navigate, show, and hide content; create a form with check boxes and text entry fields; and embed audio and video. Plus, discover how to add polish with calculations, page transitions, and more.

Topics include:
  • Creating a new interactive document
  • Linking to URLs and mail addresses
  • Creating bookmarks
  • Adding buttons with rollover states
  • Adding text, list, and submit fields to forms
  • Embedding audio and video
  • Adding page transitions
  • Best practices for exporting high-quality interactive PDF files
Subjects:
Design Digital Publishing PDF
Software:
InDesign
Author:
David Blatner

Navigation buttons

If you're familiar with hyperlinks and HTML, you know that they can look different depending on their state. For example, they'll have one look most of the time and a different look when you move your cursor over them called a hover or roll over state. The buttons are similar, each button can have up to three different looks. For example, this Portfolio button, one of our navigation buttons, looks like this normally, it's just white. But as soon as I place my cursor over it, it changes to purple. That's the rollover state. When I click down on it, you'll see that it highlights. I'm holding the Mouse button down right now so you can see that it's highlighting. Then I'll let go of the Mouse button and you'll see that it goes back to its rollover state.

Move my cursor away, and it goes back to its normal state. You'll also see this dotted line around the button. That's called having the focus on the button. Whenever you click on a button, it puts the focus on it. This is an accessibility feature for people who can't use the mouse and need to move from one button to the next using the Tab key. Some people kind of find that dotted line kind of distracting. And if it's bothering you, you can turn it off on your copy inside the preferences. You just open your Acrobat Preferences dialog box, choose the Forms pane, and then turn off Show Focus Rectangle. Now, I'm going to leave it turned on because I like having my copy of Acrobat set up to the default values.

But just so you know, you can turn it off if you don't like it. Now, all three of these states, the normal, rollover, and click are really important for giving your audience feedback when they're reading your PDF on a desktop or a laptop screen. Now, they're less relevant on table screens, of course, because there's really no such thing as a rollover on a tablet. There are clicks, of course, or taps but even that apps that handle buttons don't show their click states when you tap on them. But still most PDFs are still viewed on the desktop or a laptop, so let's learn how to make some rollovers in InDesign. I am going to make the second button have a rollover about that's on the master page.

So I'm going to press Cmd+J or Ctrl+J on Windows, then just press the letter A because I'm going to go to master page A and hit Return or Enter. Now, I'll select that button on the page and zoom in to 200% by pressing Cmd+2 or Ctrl+2 on Windows. This was a regular text frame but I've already turned it into a button object, which I discussed how to do in the last movie. So, let's go ahead and open the Buttons and Forms panel, and I can see that I already have an action assigned to this. It's going to go to a destination, and the destination is about Linwood. But right here, in the middle of the panel, I have the appearance section. And the appearance section lets me create my rollover and click states. Right now, I only have one state attached to this button. That's the normal state.

To add a rollover state it's really easy. All you have to do is click on Rollover. As soon as you click on this, it creates this state. Now, technically when you click rollover, InDesign literally duplicates that object and puts it in the new state. I find it's really helpful to remember that these are totally different objects. When you click on normal, you get that object. When you click on rollover, you get a different object. In design is literally swapping one out for the other on your page so that you can see in and edit only one at a time. Of course, right now they look identical, so you can't tell the difference. So, while the roll over state is selected, let's go ahead and edit it. I am going to double click on this to select the text frame inside, the button object and then double click again to select the text. I'll just select this test just by dragging over it. And then I'll head up to the Control panel, and I'm going to fill this text with a different color.

Let's say this rollover purple color. That's it, I've changed the look of my rollover, just by changing the color. Let's go ahead and select this with a selection tool again. I'll just deselect here and click on the button. And you can see I now have a normal state, which is white, and a rollover state, which is purple. Now, let's add a click state. Just click on the Click appearance, and now I've got a third state here, something that's completely different. It duplicated the normal object, put it inside the click state, and is displaying that for me. So, now I can double click on this, double click again, and I'm going to select this, and once again I'll change this to that purple color.

Now, I'm going to hit the Escape key, which goes out. It sort of selects the frame itself, that text frame, which is inside the button object, and I'm going to apply kind of a glow effect around it. While that text frame is selected, I'll open the Effects panel and now I'm going to say on the text, apply and effect. So, I'll go to the Effects Popup menu and say give an Outer Glow. Let's go ahead and make this yellow instead of white, and then set this to multiply so we get a really sharp, strong yellow, make this a little bit bigger. And then click OK.

Now, that I see it I don't really like that yellow so much so I'm going to double click on effects and go back here and change it back to stream and see if that looks good. Yeah it is better. Let's go ahead and click OK and now we have our click effect. So, when we go back to Buttons and Forms, we see we have three different states. Normal, which is just white: Rollover, which is purple and Click, which is purple with the glow around it. We can test buttons out by going to the Swift Preview panel and then clicking on the Play button.

Lets see if our buttons going to work. I'm going to hover my cursor over the word about, and you can see it immediately changes to a purple color. Then I'll click down on it, and it highlights. I know it's kind of small on the screen, but you get the idea. Our rollover and our click Works, and it looks beautiful. Now, maybe I'm just easily amused, but I think rollovers like this are really neat, and the fact that they're so incredibly easy to make in InDesign, makes me a happy camper.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about InDesign Insider Training: Interactive PDFs.


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Q: I am trying to turn objects in a layered InDesign document into buttons, following the lessons in Chapter 3, but they don't show up when I export to PDF. What's wrong?
A: This is a known issue with InDesign, stacked layers, and buttons. The final stacking order in your PDF is actually determined by the order the buttons are created, not the stacking order of the layers in your document. David Blatner has researched and proposed a solution to this issue on his InDesign Secrets blog. Read more about it here.
Q: This course was updated on 01/17/2014. What changed?
A: The author updated three movies in the "Links and Bookmarks" chapter, since the behavior of hyperlinks has recently changed in InDesign CC.
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