Automating Adobe InDesign CS4 with ExtendScript

Even if you have upgraded to using InDesign CS5 or CS6, this book will be a great place to start working with ExtendScript (Adobe’s extended version of JavaScript. Most of the scripts in the book will work with CS5 and CS6, and ExtendScript is cross-platform so Windows users can take advantage of an iintuitive language for automating InDesign.

Overview of Chapters

  1. Ready, Set, Go Setting your computer up with scripts and resources provided. Introduction to scripting and the ExtendScript workspace. Take a look at InDesign’s Scripts panel and run some scripts just to get familiar with the power of scripting.
  2. JavaScript Basics All the basics of ExtendScript and its JavaScript core. Get a taste of working with functions while using some pre-written code.
  3. Working with InDesign Now that you have a little basic knowledge under your belt, start exploring InDesign’s document model.
  4.  InDesign’s Geometry This chapter starts with a discussion on arrays, and then explores working with measurements, rulers, and page geometry.
  5. Repeats and Recursion Learn how to replace repetitive manual labor with a few simple scripts.
  6. Document Structure Work with layers, grids, guides, and the master spread.
  7.  Files and Folders Get familiar with methods that work with the file system and InDesign document files.
  8. Colors and Swatches Automate creating color swatches, tints, and gradients.
  9. Adding Style Using paragraph and character styles is essential to automation. Learn some tips and tricks you can use whether a script is involved or not.
  10. Placing Text Techniques for placing text, labeling and linking text frames, and working with linked text.
  11.  Placing Images and PDFs Wrapping text, and placing images is central to this chapter’s discussion.
  1.  Lines and Borders Investigate some of the properties generic to graphic lines and borders.
  2. Tables Create table styles and discover some unique ways of using tables in your documents.
  3. Text Considerations Selecting and styling text, using tabs, and special characters.
  4. Text Style Revisited Paragraph rules, underline, strike through, bullets and numbering pair up with automating nested styles.
  5.  Find and Change Some of the ways scripts can help with find and change operations.
  6.  InDesign Dialogs Start creating custom dialog interfaces using InDesign’s Dialog object.
  7.  Graphic Concepts If graphics are your thing, you will look forward to this chapter. Investigate pathfinder operations, transformations, and more.
  8. Automation Arsenal Libraries, library assets, anchored objects, and text variables take center stage here.
  9.  Experience XML A hands-on chapter that explores some of the ways that XML can take your projects to the max using InDesign’s powerful import XML features.
  10. M is for “Multi” Multiple documents, books, multimedia, and multipurposing.
  11. It’s a Wrap Just a peek at some of the more advanced concepts of working with JavaScript: doScript, script libraries, and object oriented programming (oop).

Feature Script

Script, Library With Dialog, Uses a custom dialog to allow the user to select an existing library or create a new library. If a page item is selected, the user has the option of storing it as an asset in the library. Currently only available written in AppleScript. Download the script from here


Book Scripts

Scripts for the book are available to users who have purchased and registered their books. Download scripts here .

CS6 Update

Scripts for CS6 are now on the downloads page for those who have registered their ExtendScript book. Download here .