New Feature: Playlist Center! Pick a topic and let our playlists guide the way—like a learning mixtape.

Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs
Illustration by John Hersey

Setting up an interactive document


From:

InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs

with David Blatner

Video: Setting up an interactive document

Let's create a new interactive document. I'll go to the New Document dialog box and now the very first thing you need to ask yourself is, do I want portrait or landscape? That is, do I want my document taller than it is wide or wider than it is tall? The decision depends largely on how likely it is that your audience will view it on screen or will print it. If you think your audience will play with the interactivity a little bit and then just go ahead and print it, then you should set your document up for print, that is Portrait.

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
please wait ...
InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs
48m 43s Intermediate Jul 02, 2009

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

InDesign's high-quality typography and layout tools go beyond print. In InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs, David Blatner explores interactive PDF files and the techniques used to add movies and sounds to them. In addition, David explains how to avoid common pitfalls and reveals some tricks for making eye-catching documents as efficiently as possible.

Topics include:
  • Following best practices for new documents
  • Creating multi-step bulleted slides
  • Embedding hyperlinks and page transitions to navigate inside the document or jump to a web site
  • Placing and streaming movies
  • Adding SWF files to PDFs
  • Adding background music to PDFs
Subjects:
Design Web Digital Publishing PDF
Software:
InDesign
Author:
David Blatner

Setting up an interactive document

Let's create a new interactive document. I'll go to the New Document dialog box and now the very first thing you need to ask yourself is, do I want portrait or landscape? That is, do I want my document taller than it is wide or wider than it is tall? The decision depends largely on how likely it is that your audience will view it on screen or will print it. If you think your audience will play with the interactivity a little bit and then just go ahead and print it, then you should set your document up for print, that is Portrait.

On the other hand if you're expecting them primarily to view it on screen, then match that document to the screen and go landscape. The next choice has to do with the Page Size. Now most interactive designers think in pixels, but InDesign doesn't offer pixels, however it does offer points. And because interactive documents typically assume a standard resolution of 72 dpi and because there are 72 points per inch, then points and pixels are identical in interactive documents.

For example, if I want let's say, an 800X600 document, I can come over here and just type in 800 points wide. Now I will hit Tab to go to the Height and do 600 points. Now notice that it's doing the conversion from points into picas. That's just because in my default installation of InDesign it's set up to picas. You can change that in the Preferences dialog box to points and then you'll be seeing the points instead of picas. Now you may have noticed that when I type that in, InDesign automatically shows the value 800X600, out of the Page Size pop-up menu. If I click on that pop-up menu you can see that, that option was actually already there inside the pop-up menu.

There's a bunch of presets in here that you can choose from including the 640X480 or a little larger the 1024X768. It's completely up to you. You can choose any of these. In fact, if you're making a document that will be both read on screen and for print then there's a reasonably good chance that you would want to choose either Letter or A4. Both the Letter and A4 set landscape match screen size reasonably well. For example, in InDesign Magazine, that's a magazine that I'm Editorial Director for, we just use Letter size instead of Landscape because we expect that people will mostly view it on screen.

But every now and again, they will want to print out an article. Finally, let's take a look at some of these other options. We definitely don't need Facing Pages for making an interactive document and we probably don't need Margins either. Although I find it useful to have a little bit of Margin on each side, just to set a little bit of an offset so I can see and don't put stuff too close to the edge. But that's completely up to you. If we click on More Options we see the Bleed and Slug guides but that we definitely don't need in an interactive document, that's just for print.

So I'll click OK and now that we've set up the page, it's time to start adding backgrounds, text images and interactive elements such as buttons, movies and sounds.

There are currently no FAQs about InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs.

 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

join now Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed InDesign CS4: 10 Things to Know About Interactive PDFs.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

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.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Notes cannot be added for locked videos.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.