InDesign tip : #05

before launching into the latest tip — here’s a funny little story… imagine someone, a friend, is interested in automating workflows and uses applescript to achieve quite astonishing time savings. this friend regularly deals with old dodgy files which no longer behave correctly and has to rebuild them by copying all the content across to a new, fresh file (inx and idml are no good because most links are broken at this stage of the workflow). no worries, applescript should be able to handle the problem easily. and it DOES. our friend is chuffed because he needs to use this script about five or six times a year to recover failing files. got all that? cool.

now imagine this friend discovering that InDesign can already copy all the content from one file into another. the function is already there — no scripting required — works perfectly. talk about laugh.

ok, so the story is not THAT funny, unless you’re a geek (because they don’t get out much). anyway, here’s the tip…

salvage a recalcitrant file — duplicate its contents to a fresh file :
create a new file with the same dimensions as the original
the new file only needs a single page
go to your original file and select every page in the pages panel
from the pages panel dropdown menu, choose ‘move pages…’
select your new document from the ‘Move to:’ dropdown menu
delete the first page from the new document and save

pages panel dropdown screen grab
move pages window screen grab

unfortunately this functionality is not available in CS2 — not sure about CS3 — definitely works in CS4 and later.

in fairness to our friend, it should be mentioned that the original script was written for CS2 — when the ‘move pages’ command did not support inter-document transfers. you’ll be pleased to know that the script is still useful.
a modified version was used just this week, apparently, to copy the contents of only two layers of a 55 page file across to four other existing files which needed the same content added to the same pages.

if you are interested in having a play with the original script…
you can get a copy of DupDoc.applescript here

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