Join Mike Rankin for an in-depth discussion in this video Understanding multistate objects, part of InDesign CC: Interactive Document Fundamentals (2014).
One of the most popular elements in any kind of interactive document is a slide show. Slide shows 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 slide shows is a multi-state object. So let's see how they work. This document contains some pieces from an artist's portfolio, images of paintings and related captions.
And there are four in all, stacked on top of one another. I'm going to include this portfolio in a project that I published to the iPad with the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite. And on this page, I'd like to create a slideshow of the paintings so the user can navigate through the slideshow by tapping this forward and back buttons. If I open the layers panel, in the images layer, I can see that I've named each one of these groups with the name of the painting. So each group contains the image and a text frame with a caption.
The first step to making a multi-state object is to convert all these separate objects into one multi-state object. And I can do that by simply selecting them all, opening the object states panel, and clicking the button to convert them to a multi-state object. Notice how I don't see the stack on my page anymore? I just see one object. And the object has an icon at the bottom right to indicate that it's a multi-state object. And, 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 name that I applied to the groups in the Layers Panel.
Now, let's give this multi-state object a descriptive name, like Slide Show. I can click on each state to view it. And 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 applies only to this state. I can drill down further by double-clicking on an object to select it within the state, and the icon in the panel changes to tell me that I have content selected.
Now, any transformations I do will affect only this object and nothing else in this state or any other. If I press escape, or click anywhere on the state in the panel, I select the whole state again. And then I can click the button in the top right of the panel or press escape again to select the entire mutli-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 chose what you want to do. Now I just have a 3 state multistate object. I'll undo so I have a 4 state multistate object once again. Copy and pasting is also a bit different when you're working with multistate objects. If I draw a rectangle and I want to paste it into a state. I can't just press Cmd or Ctrl V, even if I had the state selected. So here I'll draw a rectangle. I'll cut it to my clipboard.
Select a state and try to paste it in by pressing Cmd or Ctrl V. And it just stays as an independent object. So I'll cut it again. Select the multi state object and I have to use the controls in the panel. I can click on the Star button to paste the object into the selected state or I can click on the button to the right of that to create a new state containing just what I have in my clipboard. I'm just going to paste the rectangle back into the layout. Just so I can show you one more thing you can do. If I select the rectangle, and shift click to select my multi-state object, I have some new options.
On the left, I can click to add the rectangle to the currently visible state, or I can click the new button to add the rectangle as a new state in this multi-state object. Okay now that we've seen some of the ways to create and modify multi state objects. Lets finish this slideshow and check it out. I'll delete this rectangle since I don't need it. And I'll work on my buttons. So first I'll select the Forward button, go to the buttons and Forms panel. Click on the plus sign to choose an action. and I'll choose Go To Next State.
And I'll click on my other triangle. And I'll choose the action Go to Previous State. And remember we are using the object slideshow. Also remember that we are creating this slideshow for DPS. So this won't work in an interactive PDF. We'll cover DPS in detail in later movies, so for now let's just work on setting up the controls for the slide show, and previewing it. To set the controls for the slide show and DPS we use the folio overlays panel, which I can open by choosing Window > Folio Overlays.
If I select my multi-state object. The panel automatically displays the slideshow controls. I have options to Autoplay, to play when the user taps, to control the cross fade between the images and the speed with which it happens, and so forth. I'm just going to leave all of these as they are, and click on Preview, Preview on Desktop. This I'll build a folio file, and display it in the Content Viewer application. And now I can click on the button to go through the slide show and see the different paintings.
So here we saw an example of an important use for multistate objects, which is to create slide shows and other kinds of interactivity. For Adobe DPS projects. We saw how to create a multi-state object from separate objects, how to understand what you have selected in a multi-state object as well as how to add and remove states. Truly, multi-state objects are a great way to add interactivity and creativity to a DPS project.
- Overview of interactive document types
- Enhancing a project with interactive objects
- Setting up hyperlinks, page transitions, and a table of contents
- Understanding media formats
- Adding HTML animations
- Manage folios with the Folio Producer
- Creating EPUBs
- Adapting a page layout for mobile devices with Liquid Layout
- Changing page designs with primary text frames
- Formatting text with text style mapping
- Workflows for designing interactive documents
- Customizing the workspace
- Organizing content with layers
- Using third-party scripts to work on interactive documents