7 Replies Latest reply on Apr 25, 2013 5:12 PM by orontes

    Dynamic PDF documents

    community help Level 1

      This question was posted in response to the following article: http://help.adobe.com/en_US/indesign/cs/using/WS328f5ee33f08f77d1e63e3d120f2667a4c-7ffe.ht ml

        • 1. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents

          Performing the steps explained to output to an interactive pdf from InDesign CS6 results in a non-interactive pdf. For example I've run a test where I've created a scrolling text frame in InDesign using the Folio Overlay panel...the preview using the Content viewer works as expected. It doesn't in the exported pdf file when viewed using the Acrobat reader (v11.5) on my Win7 system.


          I've seen reference elsewhere (for instance) that indicate that what is promised in the Adobe documentation actually often doesn't work in real-life:




          This is in addition to numerous other forum and blog entries that document much the same problem.


          It's discouraging when the product doesn't live up to the expectations espoused by the documentation.

          • 2. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents
            BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

            The feature in the folio overlays panel are for DPS not, PDF.


            Where have you seen any mention of DPS features working in PDF? If you can point them out, I will forware the information to the appropriate parties and have it corrected.



            • 3. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents
              66vwsplit Level 1

              Hello Bob,




              Your response was fast. Thank you.




              I guess my frustration comes into play as a user of InDesign who would really like to use the interactive features. I can get them to work within the program (via the content viewer) and sometimes in my pdf. I'm not an expert in this by any stretch, and I'll admit to really not understanding the concept of DPS, folios, and my own need to publish an interactive training document that features videos, navigation buttons, and scrolling text windows. I'm largely self-taught, which does lead to frustrations at times as documentation doesn't always cover what I'd like to do with as much detail as I need.




              The title of the help page itself suggested to me, without any mention of DPS, that links, movie clips, page transitions and the like can be output to interactive pdf (which I know that they can). Outside of my scrolling text window problem, which I hadn't realized pertains to DPS solely,





              I realize that it doesn't mention scrolling text

              • 4. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents
                BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                Did you choose Adobe PDF (interactive) when exporting? If so, are you viewing the PDF in a current version of Acrobat or Reader?



                • 5. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents
                  66vwsplit Level 1

                  Hello Bob,



                  Sorry for my earlier (still in progress) reply. Was called away from my desk and mistakenly closed my browser window on my return.



                  If you don't wish to read the rest of my explanation that follows, the takeaway What I have yet to find is a clear, up-to-date roadmap through this maze that will allow me to produce the document I envision. I've found that I can build the document, but attempts at publishing aren't so luck. I need the to have the confidence that our clients, no matter if using a Windows or Mac computer, will see the presentation as I intend when I choose to publish to interactive pdf.



                  Before I go further, thanks again for your response. First, my system particulars:




                  Adobe Acrobat XI Pro

                  InDesign CS6

                  Adobe Acrobat Reader 11.5





                  What I'm trying to do based on my past InDesign experience (but with no experience in using interactivity features):



                  - Build a stand-alone training document that can be distributed by pdf (preferred) or by electronic file transfer (swf + html + asset directory). The document explains the use of our search and rescue airborne imaging technology and covers a variety of issues including theory, constraints, components, installation, and how to conduct a search.



                  - My idea will see the presentation feature text, photos, and videos. It may also feature short Flash animations, included as swf files. I've built some of these already.



                  - The user will be able to follow through the presentaion on their own, and replay/revisit content as necessary.



                  - InDesign's interactive features that I've been learning to use via my subscription to Lynda.com, and other online sources and magazines, include navigation buttons, video, links to other pages within the document, page transitions, scrolling text within a frame, and some form of breadcrumb navigation aid (similar to a website).



                    Here's where my trouble comes in. I've proven to myself that I can get all of these features to work within the application itself, yet when I try to publish the document to interactive pdf, I'm seeing more of the limitations than the possibilities. As I tried to say earlier, I don't really understand DPS, and hadn't realized that some features (scrolling text) pertain to this system only and not to pdfs. I have seen that I have access to the lowest tier of DPS through my Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, but it's use is fuzzy to me...it seems that I can create all I want, but have to pay to publish a .folio? What is a .folio anyway? Even after googling this, I don't completely understand the process as there doesn't appear to be any software to download. I'll need to spend some time with Lynda's training videos on this system.



                  Outside of DPS I've learned along the way that things like buttons and their changing states don't translate directly into an interactive pdf, and that you need to first output a swf for each page of your InDesign document and then place these swf files one by one into your pdf from within Acrobat Pro. Or if I ignore the button issue, I've learned that built-in page transitions won't work alongside other interactive features in the output pdf. It may just be me, but there appears to be a lot of, "Yes, you can do that...but...."



                  Without making my explanation more difficult to follow, I guess that I've been frustrated when it comes time to use features that InDesign now features. The creative process itself is a fun and enabling process within the program, but this comes crashing to the ground as I encounter the nuances and limitations on the publishing end with no clear roadmap around the obstacles. I have a sense of the technical challenges that come from trying to do what I'm hoping to do (Adobe certainly must have put a lot of technical wizardry into the software), but from a user's perspective, I'm only seeing the walls.



                  When I come across similar experiences of others during my research, it only serves to reinforce my feeling that perhaps I'm in this too deep. What the program makes so relatively easy to create, really isn't that easy to follow through with on the publishing side of things. Lots of landmines in between, and no clear route through.



                  Are there other learning resources that you might suggest?


                  Thanking you again,




                  • 6. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents
                    BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                    Bottom line is that you are confusing which features are compatible with various output. Again you mention scrolling text. This is a DPS only feature.


                    Some features are compatible with more than one digital output…some buttons for instance, but for the most part you need to know what your output will be BEFORE you start working.


                    There is simply too much to go into here to explain it all but I will tell you this. Animations and multi state objects are not compatible with PDF, nor is anything you'll find in the folio overlays panel.



                    • 7. Re:  Dynamic PDF documents

                      Hi, I have managed to produce an interactive InDesign document with buttons for navigation (next/previous) and page transitions. All ok. I can convert to pdf, open in full screen - looks good.


                      What's not working (for me):

                      Buttons for menu (to take you from front page directly to page 3, for example) They don't work.

                      I can't find an exit action that I can show as button in. At the moment I need to explain to recipient how to close presentation. I would like a button on every page, as a quick exit option.

                      Page transitions are also activated by clicking anywhere on page. I would like recipients to use my next/previous page buttons only.

                      I am hoping I can supply the final pdf to my client for them to include in their website. Do I need to create a special document or convert into another format for this to happen.

                      Client would normally send emails to customers with a link to newsletter on their site (currently just a 4-6 page static pdf)

                      A lot to ask, I know - but would appreciate any help

                      regards kel