Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
Here is a cardinal rule of being efficient in InDesign, do more with less. For example, let's say this catalog will be printed and distributed in both the US and the UK. You could make two different files but that is not very efficient, especially if you later needed to make edits. You would end up making each edit twice. Fortunately, InDesign CS4 has a new feature called conditional text, which lets us turn on and off different aspects of our document. Let me show you how it works. I will go to the Window menu and choose Conditional Text from the Type & Tables submenu. The Conditional Text panel shows us all the different conditions in our document and right now it only shows us Unconditional. Any text set to Unconditional will always be visible no matter what you turn on and off. I am going to select this text frame and zoom in to 200% by pressing Cmd+2 or Ctrl+2 on Windows and I can see that there are two different prices in here, the US price and the UK price.
I want to make one condition that will show me the US prices and another condition that will show me the UK prices. So to do that I go to the Conditional panel and I click on the New Condition button at the bottom. I am going to call this one UK Prices. The Indicator settings are not important most of the time; it's just a matter of how those conditions are going to show up on screen. I will click OK and there is my UK Prices. Let's make another one, which is US Prices. Note that this one is going to be Red instead of Blue. And those different colors show up here in these swatches on the side. Now it is time to actually apply those conditions to some text.
I will double click inside this text frame to switch to the Type tool, I will select the dollar amount, and I am just going to click on US Prices. Now I will select the pound amount, it is 3.75, and I will click on UK Prices. It is as simple as that. I can't see the indicators because I am currently in Preview mode. So why don't I go up to the Application bar and switch to Normal mode. And now you can see the stuff that has a wavy red underline is US Prices. I know that because it is red and US prices has a red swatch next to it. The text that has the blue wavy underline is the UK Prices. Once we have applied those conditions, we can hide or show them. For example, I will click on the little eyeball next to UK Prices and it just disappears. Or I can click on that to turn it on again and turn off the US Prices. Now I only see the UK price.
Here is a little tip. You can hold on the Option key or Alt on Windows and click on the Visibility icon to toggle the other conditions. For example, if I click on the US Prices Visibility icon with the Option or Alt key held down, it turns off all the other conditions except for Unconditional. Remember, Unconditional is always visible. As you might guess from the name Conditional Text, this only lets you apply conditions to text in your document. But sometimes there is other elements in your document that you wish you could turn on and off. For example this NO 5, I want to make this NO 5 logo a special icon indicating that it is a special product item in the catalog. But I want to be able to turn it on and off at will. It is not text so how will I make it Conditional Text? Well, I have to anchor it as an anchored object. So I will go the Edit menu, I will cut it out, I will double click after this word or I could put it anywhere in this text frame really, and then I will paste it in here. Now it is an anchored object. I need to put it outside of the text frame so I am going to right click on it or Ctrl-click with one button mouse, go to Anchored Object, click on Options, and then change the Position to Custom.
I have discussed the details of the Anchored Objects in an earlier chapter so it's suffice to say for now I can simply turn off Keep within Top/Bottom Column Boundaries, click OK, and then just drag it to where I want to put it. I will put it up here a little bit. Now how do I assign a condition to it? You have to select the Anchored Object marker inside the text. To be honest I have already forgotten where I had put it. I was working so quickly. So I am going to select the frame that has a story in it, and I will got the Edit menu, and choose Edit in Story Editor. The Anchored Object shows up here very clearly, that little icon. And I can drag over it in the Story Editor and apply my special condition to it.
I need a new condition in here called Special. So I will click on the New Condition button and I will just call this Special item. Click OK and then I will click once on Special item to move the checkbox here. When I close the Story Editor, you will see that this now has a green outline indicating that it is a Special item Condition. Let's try it out. I will hide that condition and the object disappears. I will show that condition and it reappears. This technique of using Anchored Objects is how you would make tables conditional too and even images. Just anchor them in the text and then set the condition in Story Editor.
Often when you are using the Conditional Text panel, you will find yourself with lots and lots of conditions, far more than I have listed here. And then it becomes a real pain to turn them on and off in certain sets. Like maybe I want the UK Prices and all the Special items, and you will have to do a lot of clicking on and off all the time; that is just a pain. So Adobe added a Conditional Text Set feature and I can see it down here at the bottom of the panel. Now you may not be able to see it, it is hidden most of the time. If you do not see it, go to the Conditional Text panel menu and choose Show Options.
That's how it looks when it is hidden. That's what it looks like when it is showing. All it is this one pop-up menu that let's you save sets of conditions. To make a set, turn on and off the conditions that you want in the set, then go to the Set menu, and choose Create a New Set. I will call this UK Special Items. Click OK and it shows up here. Now maybe I will turn off a couple of these and just say only the US Prices. I will make a new set here called US Regular Items; so not the special ones. Click OK and now I have two different sets in here.
To choose them, I just choose them for the menu. There is my UK Special Items with a special icon and the UK Prices. Here is the US Regular Prices with the US Prices and no icons. Now it would be really annoying if I had to go through my whole document selecting the text and clicking on a condition, and selecting some more text and clicking on a condition. In this case, it would be great if I could find a pattern like, find all the things that look like UK Prices and just assign that condition to them. But we can do that if we use GREP Find and Change.
I will open the Find/Change dialog box by pressing Cmd+F or Ctrl+F on Windows. And by the way, I will need to make sure all of my conditions are turned on for this to work. So I will go ahead and turn all of those on. And in the Find/Change dialog box, I am going to make sure I am in the GREP tab, and I am going to find anything that looks like a pound price, pound and then some numbers after it. To do that I will just type the pound symbol on my keyboard, and I will come out here, and I will say, I want to find anything that is a Digit. And I will say, one or more of those from the Repeat panel. We talked about GREP in an earlier movie so this should be simple for you. One or More Times.
And then I am going to type a period, which means any character, any single character. It could be a period, it could be a comma depending on the currency, and then I am going to say, let's get some more digits in here. So one more digit. In fact, I happen to know that this is always going to be two digits. So this is going to be a price. A pound sign, one or more digits, then a dot, and then a couple of more digits. Let's see if it works. I will click Find and it jumps right to the first one. So I can tell that my GREP pattern worked great. Now I want to apply a condition to it. I will check one more time just to make sure all the conditions are going, and then I am going to click anywhere in the Change Format field that opens the Change Format dialog box. And I will click on the Condition pane. Here is the list of all the conditions in here and I want to turn on the UK Prices. Click OK, and I can see that I am going to find anything that looks like the UK Price, and apply that condition to it. I feel pretty confident in this so I am just going to click Change All, and we can see it went through my whole catalog and made a bunch of changes.
Let's do the same thing with the dollar sign in front of this instead. I will delete the pound symbol and I will put a dollar sign in instead. But in this case, I happen to know that I can't just use a dollar sign that is a reserved special character in GREP. I have to type \$. And this one is not going to go to UK Prices; it is going to go to US Prices. Here we go, click OK, and change all of those. When I close the Find/ Change dialog box, you can easily see that the wavy colored underlines are underneath those prices.
I am going to de-select everything with a Cmd+Shift+A or Ctrl+Shift+A on Windows, go back to Preview mode, and we will see how it works. I am going to choose the UK Special Items Set and you can see that suddenly I will only see the UK Prices throughout the entire document. Let's go and see the US Prices. There I go; it is as simple as that. In a later chapter, we will see how you can even turn on and off these conditions across multiple documents in a book with a single click. But for now let's take a moment to look at one more new feature in CS4, the ability to make Cross References.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.