8 Replies Latest reply on Nov 9, 2015 12:38 PM by Charlie Y

    Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???

    C_Yarwood

      This has been a long-standing thorn in my side with InDesign. Support suggested that it was exclusive to me, but it has done this on every computer I've used and in every version of ID. It concerns delimiters in File Info. The File Info dialog box says "Semicolons or commas can be used to separate lists". However; if I put commas between keywords, when I save the ID file, it converts them all to semicolons. I build a quarterly website update that incorporates a lot of PDFs that I export from master ID documents. The website prefers that keywords be comma delimited - actually won't work right if semicolons are used. So, I end up having the manually change all those semicolons back to commas - in keyword and in author lists. It's getting old. Does anyone else have this problem? Anyone have a solution? I'd like to think there was a setting that could be changed in ID to make it accept the commas - or a metadata search/replace feature in Bridge. Suggestions are invited.

      Thanks,

      Charlie Yarwood

      National Cotton Council

        • 1. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
          David W. Goodrich Level 3

          If what you want to do is extract the XMP metadata from the PDFs then you might want to look into the fabulous ExifTool.  I use the command line version to extract various categories of metadata from PDFs because I lack the programming expertise for the Perl version.  The command line can be intimidating for the unaccustomed, and it took me a while to figure out the correct parameters, but "-xmp-dc:subject" will get you a list of the Keywords in a PDF, which ExifTool separates with commas.  With wild cards, ExifTool can process a folderful of PDFs (or other files) in one swell foop, and re-direct its output to a text file.  You can store a series of operations in a file for it to perform on one or more files, in case you want, say, the contents of the four basic XMP categories listed in PDFs as Title, Author, Subject, and Keywords, neatly separated by the names of the source files.  (ExifTool knows these categories as dc:title, dc:creator, dc:description, and dc:subject, where "dc" stands for "Dublin Core"; note that InDesign's names also vary -- sometimes you think they go out of their way to complicate all this.)

           

          Good luck!

          David

          • 2. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
            John Hawkinson Level 5

            What's your OS? What's your workflow like to get the PDF onto the web site?

             

            We have some custom software (written in Java, of all things! Because of PDF manipulation libraries) that redacts some things from our PDFs, and then also sets the metadata. Perhaps some kind of postprocessing would work for you.

             

            Probably pdftk is the tool to use.

             

            p.s.: I don't think Exiftool can write metadata to PDFs. It can read it, but that's a bit different.

            • 3. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
              David W. Goodrich Level 3

              Perhaps I was wrong in thinking what C_Yarwood wanted was convenient access to the XMP metadata rather than to change the separators within his ID and PDF files.  As he says, the change doesn't "take" when made via ID's File Info.  Nor is changing semi-colons to commas so simple with Acrobat 9 Pro: change a comma between Keywords to a semi-colon and it will stick, but forcing a comma into the Author category causes the entry to be enclosed in quotes.  One might think this was to allow <Jones, John Paul, Jr.>, which Acrobat turns into <"Jones, John Paul, Jr.">; presumably to allow multiple authors with commas in their names: <Jones, John Paul, Jr.; Cat, Fritz the> becomes <"Jones, John Paul, Jr."; "Cat, Fritz the">.  But in the Advanced section behind Acrobat Pro's Additional Metadata button there are now five elements in the Dublin Core creator container, <Jones>, <John Paul>, <Jr.>, <Cat>, and <Fritz the>.  I don't think that's what C_Yarwood is looking for.

               

              Marijan Tompa (tomaxxi)'s XMP Panel for IDCS5 offers different windows onto XMP metadata in InDesign files, and uses commas for delimiters for both Keywords and Authors.  The windows contain text, so the data can be copy-and-pasted via the clipboard.  Type an author's name into tomaxxi's Author window with commas and the commas show as semi-colons in ID's File Info.

               

              For those interested in Java -- or who haven't moved to IDCS5 -- tomaxxi has three earlier posts where he provide several snippets of code for getting XMP metadata into and out of InDesign files.

               

              David

              • 4. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
                John Hawkinson Level 5

                David:

                 

                For those interested in Java -- or who haven't moved to IDCS5 -- tomaxxi has three earlier posts where he provide several snippets of code for getting XMP metadata into and out of InDesign files.

                No no -- those are Javascript, not Java. Totally different langguages. At least I certainly hope so they're not in Java, but you don't provide references to the posts. But I actually meant that we have software that manipulates our raw PDF files in Java. (Ironically pdftk is written in Java, too.).

                 

                But yes, if it turns out the problem is merely in InDesign's UI and it exports the relevant XMP data from the INDD file straight into the PDF, then tomaxxi's method is totally the way to go, either via his panel or via scripting access to the ID XMP metadata.

                • 5. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
                  Charlie Y Level 1

                  Thanks for all the responses. Actually, what I'm looking for is a way to have the commas remain commas when I export from InDesign to PDF. But ID turns them to semicolons before I ever get a chance to export. If nothing else, I'd like to find out if other ID users experience the same thing. Go put some keywords in File Info in ID, use several keywords with commas as separators, hit OK. Then go back into File Info and see if they are still commas. Adobe Tech support says they remain commas when they do it - and it must be some setup problem with my OS. If it is, somehow that same problem has stuck with me through several versions of ID and through 3 operating systems. ??????????

                  • 6. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
                    Charlie Y Level 1

                    BTW: It appears that I have two Adobe profiles - C_Yarwood and Charlie Y. Both are me. 

                    • 7. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
                      [Jongware] Most Valuable Participant

                      Adobe Support is wrong.

                       

                      This has been pointed out to me by a client as a potential problem, and all I could do was answer "Yeah well it worked correctly in CS3 and now it aint no more. I'm sorry."

                      • 8. Re: Keyword Delimiters in InDesign???
                        Charlie Y Level 1

                        Well, here it is 2015 and I still have the same problem. It looks like a few responders misconstrued my intent. I don't intend to ever be extracting any metadata myself. I want my metadata to be compatible with our website's internal search engine - which does not like semicolons. And InDesign does not allow the creation of PDFs with comma delimited metadata. In fact, it doesn't allow commas at all in metadata. Sure, you can type or paste them in as commas, but as soon as you hit OK on File Info, it automatically changes all the commas to semicolons. If I felt like taking a chance, I'd leave them as semicolons. But our webmaster says they must be commas. Still frustrated.

                        C