Join Nigel French for an in-depth discussion in this video Scripts and resources, part of InDesign CS3 Long Documents.
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So we are not going to be doing that but we are going to be downloading or I'm going to point you to where you can download some very useful scripts that some wonderful, kind-hearted people out there have created and made available for our use. Here are some of the websites where you can get scripts from. I'm just going to go and take a look at the Adobe Exchange website and here if I - I'm at the Adobe Exchange beta site.
I can click on InDesign and there we have a list of available not only scripts but also templates and tutorials and most of them are free, some of them cost but most of them are free. There are very, very specific, but if that specific thing is something that you want to do, these scripts can be heaven sent. Now, when you download a script, where do you put them? Well, there are a couple of places that you can put them and they will work.
But the easiest place is to put them in the InDesign folder in the Scripts folder, in the Scripts panel folder. So let's just take a look what I mean by that. On my Desktop, I'm going to double click on my hard drive icon and then I'm going to go to Applications and to my InDesign CS3 folder, to my Script folder and my Scripts panel folder. Now that's where I want to my scripts to go.
If you are going to be working with a lot of scripts, it can make sense to make an alias or a shortcut to this folder and that's what I'm going to do here. In fact that's what I have done right there by coming to the File menu and choosing Make Alias and then dragging that alias on to the Desktop. Then when I download a script I can just drag the script into that folder. Once a script has been installed where you will find it is under the Window menu, on the Automation flyout, in the Scripts panel.
InDesign comes with many wonderful sample scripts and they are in the Samples folder. Scripts that I have added are going to be outside of the Samples folder. But depending on exactly where you put your scripts they may be in the User folder. In my case they are at the first level of the Scripts panel folder. To run a script, and I'm just going to draw a rectangle right there and I'm going to use this one, AddGuides, to add some guides around this selected item.
To run a script you simply double click on it and depending on the script itself you may get a dialog box giving you options or it may just perform the thing that it does and in that case we get guides around that object. Now, of course, we can't always be sure of where these scripts have come from, how safe they are to use. So this is in some ways a disclaimer that you need to tread warily at least at first with scripts and because any script may perform a series of steps that could be a very long series of steps, it may not always be possible to undo to the point where you were before you ran the script, if you don't like what the script gave you.
So in that case to be safe always make sure that you save your document before you run the script, then should things go wrong, you can revert to your last save. One other thing and that is that with the advent of CS3, scripts that were written for InDesign CS and CS2 no longer work. There is a workaround that will allow us to use older non-compatible CS3 scripts in CS3 and this is the workaround and it works most of the time.
In the aforementioned Scripts panel we want to make a folder called Version 4.0 Scripts- make sure that that's exactly what it's called- and put all of your older scripts into that folder and hopefully they should work, but do make sure that you save your document before you run the script. That's it for our overview. Let's roll up our sleeves and get working with InDesign.
- Setting up templates and master pages
- Working with Bridge
- Creating books
- Planning and managing styles
- Troubleshooting with the Story Editor
- Managing footnotes and endnotes
- Searching with GREP
- Generating a table of contents
- Automating layouts
- Repurposing material as PDF and XHTML documents