Chapter 2. InDesign XML Publishing: College Catalog Case Study

Most people look at InDesign as a layout tool for highly styled graphic designs that are rich with color and typographic controls. Some users also import data into tables or export InDesign as HTML. InDesign CS is fully capable of all these things, but if a person is exploring XML, it is usually because someone has said, “Hey, we need to use XML so that we can make web pages and PDFs and everything out of the same content.” Perhaps the organization is already using XML for the website, and someone has seen that InDesign can work with XML. Or someone has used InDesign and is wondering how to extract the content from InDesign in a way that a web service or other application can use it.

In any event, although InDesign can do some pretty useful XML importing and exporting, Adobe does not see this as a feature intended for typical users. Their demos are business card templates and cookbooks; making XML that will match what another application or process uses is not the focus of their examples. However, Adobe has provided a number of features in InDesign for importing, creating, and exporting XML.

To get the most of the XML capabilities of InDesign, think about the bigger issues of the processes you have in place, the workflow that will help with it, and whether you need to create XML from content you already have in InDesign (that is, to export XML), to create InDesign documents from XML (that is, to import XML), or to do both ...

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