IN THIS CHAPTER
Using automatic page numbers and section names
Working with text variables
Using conditional text
Working with Grep styles
Creating mail-merged and other customized documents
Creating catalogs and other structured documents with Tagged Text files
A key area of improvement over the years in InDesign is the increased use of text automation. From the very beginning, InDesign offered automatic page numbers so that your folios and cross-references would reflect the current pages as your layout changed. Later versions enhanced this with section markers, which let you create variable names in folios for your section titles. Still later came the ability to use data files and merge their contents into a layout to customize your output, similar to how word processors let you customize labels with their mail-merge feature. Then came variable text, which gives you more flexibility in where and how you can have InDesign update text automatically throughout a document. Now, InDesign CS4 adds automatically updating cross-references, conditional text, and a method to apply text formatting using the rules of the Unix Grep syntax.
Although not designed specifically for variable or custom text, another long-standing InDesign feature helps automate the creation of documents from sources such as databases. The Tagged Text format is a powerful way to create catalogs and other such layouts that have consistent formatting for content ...