Join David Blatner for an in-depth discussion in this video Create an Interactive PDF, part of InDesign CC 2018 Essential Training.
- [Instructor] This is version A of the interactive document file, from the exercise files folder. And it's designed to be viewed on screen, and it looks pretty cool, but we want to take it to the next level, by adding more interactivity. First, let's add a button. Now, if you look down in the lower right corner of my page, you'll see that I have some navigation buttons. I've already added actions to most of these buttons, but one of them, the "go to next page" button, is not yet set up. Now of course, I want these navigation buttons to be on all the pages of my document, so I put them on the master page.
Let's go up to the pages panel, and then double-click on my master page. And now, let's zoom in on this area on the bottom part of this page. So here, you can see all of the bottoms I've made. They're just InDesign objects, just triangles. Now this object here, should be the "go to next page" button. So to make it a button, I'm going to click on it, to select it, and then I need to open my buttons and forms panel. Because I'm currently in the interactive for PDF workspace, the buttons and forms panel shows up here in the dock.
So I'll click on it. Now, down at the bottom of the panel, I'm going to click on, the "make button" button. You can convert any object in InDesign into a button, and as soon as you do that, this panel springs to life, and we can start adding actions to it. First, it's a good idea to name your button something recognizable. So, instead of button 39, I'm going to call this, "next page." Next, we're going to add an action, and the action is going to happen, based on this event: On Release, or Tap.
That means, when I either tap on a touch screen, or when I release the mouse button. On that event, do an action. And I can see a list of all the actions, down here, inside the action pop up menu. In this case, all I wanted to do is go to the next page, so that's pretty much it. This is now an interactive button. But, let's give it a little bit more pizazz. How about we add a "rollover" effect? That way, when the cursor rolls over this object, it'll change. To add a roll over effect, all you need to do, is click once on the roll over state, inside the buttons and forms panel.
Now, right now, normal and rollover look exactly the same. So, that doesn't really help me. I need to change the look of this rollover effect. To do that, while rollover is selected inside the panel, I can change it. For example, I'll just give it a different fill color. Great, that's it. So now we have a normal state, which I can see by clicking normal, and the rollover state, which I can see by clicking rollover. Let's go back to normal. Now, of course, this panel is called the buttons and forms panel.
So, where's the forms part? Well, as I mentioned in the last movie, EPUB files don't support forms, but PDF files do. And it's incredibly easy to make an interactive form object. Here, I'm going to jump to the last page of my document, by opening up by pages panel, scrolling down, and then double clicking on that page. I'm still zoomed in, so I'm going to press command zero, or control zero on windows, to fit the page in the window. Now here, you can see I have a form, that has a bunch of objects over it, and those objects, are form field objects.
I've added almost all the form fields I need so far, but I do need a first name field up here. Let's go ahead and zoom in on that area. To make a form field, you just draw out any frame. You can use any of the frame tools. In this case, I'm going to use the rectangle frame tool, and I'm going to draw out this object. Now, I need to turn this into a button, by clicking on the "make button" button, down here at the bottom of the buttons and forms panel. Now check this out, currently, the type pop up menu, up here at the top, is set to button, but there are options in here.
I could make this into a check box, or a list box, or, what I want, a text field. And, of course, I'll give it a name. I'll change the name here, to "first name field." Okay, it's finally time to see our PDF in action. So let's go ahead and export it. I'll go up to the File menu, choose Export, and then, in the Format pop up menu, at the bottom, I'm going to choose, Adobe PDF (interactive). Now, a quick save, and up comes the export to interactive PDF dialogue box.
Now there are a lot of options in here, including the ability to set the initial view. For example, when I open this PDF, I want to make sure, that it fits the entire page, in the window. I'm also going to click on Compression, over here. And I'm going to change the resolution of my images. 72 is usually too low. It doesn't let people zoom in on the document. So I'm going to change this to 150. Alright, for now, I'm just going to click okay, and InDesign will write this PDF to disc.
And then, it will automatically open up an Acrobat. Here it go. Now, note that, in order to play some kinds of interactive media, such as movie and audio files, you may have to have Flash Player installed on your system. And, I should mention, that some interactive features, such as those buttons we made, down in the lower right corner, they may not work on tablets and mobile devices, such as the iPad. But here, I'm on a desktop, so check it out. I'll move down here to the lower right corner, and I can see the button that I created.
When I hover over it, you'll see that it changes color. Then, when I click, it does just what I wanted, it jumps to the next page. Now, I'm going to click on this other button, to jump to the final page. And there's my form. And, there's the form field, so I can click in there, and start typing. As cool as all of that is, I've only scratched the surface of the amazing things you can do with Interactive PDF's. I go into all of that, and more, in my title, InDesign: Interactive PDF's.
- Creating a new layout
- Inserting pages
- Adding text
- Inserting graphics
- Applying color and transparency
- Drawing and editing frames and paths
- Formatting objects
- Formatting text
- Creating styles for uniform formatting
- Building tables
- Adding links and interactivity
- Printing and exporting InDesign documents