Multi-state objects are the best way to create slideshows in interactive documents exported from InDesign. They are supported in fixed-layout EPUB and Publish online. In this video, Mike demonstrates how to make a simple slideshow that you can control with buttons using a multi-state object.
- [Instructor] One of the most popular elements in interactive documents is a slideshow. Slideshows can engage users with simple, highly visual content. And they solve a fundamental design problem of how to fit a bunch of large images into one space. When otherwise, you'd have to reduce the size of the images, or spread them out over several pages. In many cases, the tool of choice for creating slideshows, is a multi-state object. So, let's see how they work. In the exercise file for this movie, we have some pieces from an artist's portfolio. Images of paintings, and the captions that go along with them.
And, there are four in total. They're stacked on top of one another in this layout. And, I'm going to include this portfolio in a project that I might publish as either a fixed layout EPUB, or with Publish Online. Multi-state objects are not supported in reflowable EPUB, or interactive PDF. On this page, I'd like to create a slideshow of the paintings, so the user can navigate through the slideshow by tapping these forward and back buttons you see right here. And in the layers panel, I can see that each of these groups is on a layer called images.
And, each has been named for the particular painting. Now, the first step to making the slideshow is to convert these separate objects into one multi-state object. And, I can do that by simply selecting them, and opening the object states panel. And, clicking the button to convert the selection to a multi-state object. Notice how I don't see the stack on my page anymore. I see just one object. And, the object has an icon at the bottom right to indicate that it's part of a multi-state object.
You see that right down here. If I look in the object states panel, I can see that each of those groups has been converted to a state. And, each state has picked up the names that I applied to the groups, in the layers panel. Let's give this multi-state object a descriptive name. We'll call it slideshow. And, I can click on each state in the panel to view it. Notice, when I click on a state there's an icon on the right side of the panel to tell me that I have just this one state selected.
So, if I were to move, or scale, or transform the content in any way, that transformation will apply to just this one state. And, I can drill down further by double-clicking on an object in the layout, to select it within the state. So, for example, I'll double-click on this painting. And, the icon in the panel changes to tell me that I have an object selected. And any transformations I do, will affect only this object, and nothing else, in this state or any other. If I want to target the whole state again, I can press escape, or click anywhere on the state, in the panel.
And then, I can click the button at the top right of the panel, or press escape again, to select the entire multi-state object. Now, any transformations I apply will happen to all the states. If you want to edit a multi-state object by removing one of the states, you have a choice. You can either release the objects in that state, so they're just regular indesign objects. Or, you can delete them all together. Just right-click on a state, and then choose what you want to do. For example, I'll right-click on Tiger Lily, and I can choose to delete or release it to objects.
I'll release this to objects. And, I'll just move it over. I'll click back on my multi-state object. And, I can see that it has three states now. I'll undo a couple times, to get my four state multi-state object back. Copying and pasting is a bit different when you're working with multi-state objects. If I draw a rectangle, and cut it so it's on my clipboard, I can't just now press command or control V, to paste it into the visible state in my multi-state object. What I have to do is, use the button on the panel, with the star.
I'll click that, and the rectangle is pasted into this state. I'll cut it again, and just press command or control V to paste it back into my document. So, it's no longer part of the multi-state object. If I drag to select both the multi-state object and the rectangle, I have some new choices at the bottom of the object states panel. On the left, I can click to add the rectangle to the currently visible state. Or, I can click the new button, and add the rectangle as its own state in a multi-state object.
So now, it's this new state five. I'll just undo to get rid of the rectangle. Okay, now that we've seen some of the ways to create and modify multi-state objects, let's finish this slideshow and check it out. In order to have these buttons at the top control the slideshow, I have to go to the buttons informs panel and add an action. So, I'll click to select the triangle on the right. Go to buttons and forms, note that this is the next button. So, I'll choose on release or tap.
And for the event, go to next state. And, we can see that the object is the only multi-state object we have in this document slideshow. I'll select our other button, this is the previous button. On release or tap. Go to previous state of the multi-state object, slideshow. Now, we're creating this slideshow for either a fixed layout EPUB or Publish Online. And for those, we can use the EPUB interactivity preview panel to check out our slideshow, before we export.
So, let's try that. Down here at the bottom, I'll click to open the panel. And then, on the bottom left, I'll click the play button to create the preview. When the preview's rendered, we can use the buttons to navigate our multi-state object and the slideshow. There's our next button. And, our previous one. So, that's pretty cool, But, let's export now to fixed layout EPUB, and check that out. So, I'll choose file.
Export. Export to the desktop. Format, EPUB fixed layout. Click save. And, in the dialogue box, let's tweak one of the settings. Go to the conversion settings. And where it says format, change it from automatic to PNG. If we were to leave it at automatic, or set it to JPEG, then we'd get a warning message that the appearance of some of our overlapping JPEG images might change in the exported file.
Let's click OK. The EPUB is exported. And, it opens up here in iBooks. And, we'll try the slideshow. Works perfectly. So in this movie, we saw an example of a key use for a multi-state objects. Which is to create slideshows and other kinds of interactivity for fixed layout EPUB and Publish Online. We saw how to create a multi-state object from separate objects. How to tell what you have selected in a multi-state object.
And, how to add and remove states.
- Overview of interactive document types, including PDF and EPUB
- Creating interactive objects
- Setting up hyperlinks, cross-references, and a table of contents
- Working with media
- Publishing documents with Publish Online
- Creating EPUBs
- Following workflows for interactivity: interactive PDF, reflowable EPUB, and fixed-layout EPUB