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Placing InDesign files with layers into master InDesign file

New Here ,
May 23, 2020

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I want to use single-sourcing in my translated InDesign files. I'd like to use "slave" (insets) for each chunk of content I have. These chunks will be reused over multiple documents. I like to have each language on its own layer, then place these slave InDesign files into a "master" InDesign file (with the same layers). The idea is to turn off and on the layers in the master file with the hope that the slave files follow suit. Is this possible? If so, how is it done? If not, is there a similar methodology I can use?

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Placing InDesign files with layers into master InDesign file

New Here ,
May 23, 2020

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I want to use single-sourcing in my translated InDesign files. I'd like to use "slave" (insets) for each chunk of content I have. These chunks will be reused over multiple documents. I like to have each language on its own layer, then place these slave InDesign files into a "master" InDesign file (with the same layers). The idea is to turn off and on the layers in the master file with the hope that the slave files follow suit. Is this possible? If so, how is it done? If not, is there a similar methodology I can use?

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How to, Import and export

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May 23, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 27, 2020

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What did you try so far?

 

Don't think it can be done automatically, but maybe you'll find a way.

You will be able to control layer visibility for every imported page, yes.

But you have to do that individually for every imported page.

 

I assume that a custom script can help. Perhaps with a eventlistener hooked on idleTask that will check every time InDesign is idle and goes through every imported page and synch available layer visibility with the visibility of your layers in your master document.

 

You can do a feature request here:

https://indesign.uservoice.com/

 

Come back with a link when done so that everyone reading this thread can vote for it.

 

Regards,
Uwe Laubender

( ACP )

 

 

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May 27, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 28, 2020

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Could you be a bit more clear on the current or desired steps in your workflow, because I'm not sure I understand correctly what you mean by "insets" (whole documents), "chunks of content" (pages or copied content) ?

 

That said, if you copy/paste content, beware this option is set appropriately in the side menu of the Layers panel: "Keep Layers when copying" (or something similar in English). Otherwise InDesign will ignore the need to create and use any originating layer(s).

 

Schermafbeelding 2020-05-28 om 09.10.44.png

 

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May 28, 2020 0
New Here ,
May 28, 2020

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Thanks for the reply. What I'd like to do is place chunks of content--which I call insets (a term from FrameMaker)--into a master file. Both the master file and the chunks will have the same layer names. I want to place the chunks into the master files, vs copying, so that they retain their links, because I will use them in multiple documents -- in other words, reuse them. The idea then, is while in the the master file, turn on and off the desired layers so that only the desired content (layers) shows. If it helps, each layer will be designated for translated content. English content will have a lyer, German content a layer, French content a layer, and so on.

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May 28, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 28, 2020

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Hi PJL1,

thanks for the details. Already anticipated this in my first reply.

You'll need a custom script for this.

 

To make it fully automatically we need an event listening mechanism that checks the visibility of the layers in your master. It would be a startup script or you have to turn it explicitely on and off from the Scripts panel.

 

This would work like that:

Have a layer named "German" in your master document with all the placed and linked InDesign pages ( or PDFs or AI files or PhotoShop files ). If you make the layer "German" invisible in your Layers panel you have to wait a moment so that the script could go through all placed material and can turn off layer visibility for layer "German" there as well.

 

The script has to check all other layer names as well. Every time.

Could be you added a new layer, for "French" perhaps, and updated the placed files.

 

Regards,
Uwe Laubender

( ACP )

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May 28, 2020 0
New Here ,
May 28, 2020

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Thank you, Uwe.

I'm not familiar with scripts for InDesign. Do you have a recommendation for where I should go?

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May 28, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 28, 2020

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You could ask a scripter to write one for you.

I see no way that you will do this yourself without investing a couple of weeks to learn JavaScript and ExtendScript and all the stuff around eventlisteners interacting with InDesign.

 

Regards,
Uwe Laubender

( ACP )

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May 28, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 29, 2020

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You can use place and link to place instances from your content files into your master file. Any changes to the original content files will be updated on the master file (upon link update), and on any file that uses the master content (copy & paste will remember the link to the original content).

Lets say you have 3 content files, English, French & German, with layer names identifying the language. With the French version open, select an object and go to Edit> Place and link (not copy), this will load the content collector tool. Now open the master file and click into the page, this will place and link the collected content into the appropriate layer on the master document. Repeat for the other versions. Now you will have one multi-layer, multi-language file. You have the option to make edits to the placed and linked type on your master file, however, those edits will be removed (with a warning message) when the original content is changed (and the link updated).

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May 29, 2020 0