If you work with a database and InDesign, why not allow them to interface directly? Chances are you’ve been spending countless hours getting data back and forth “the hard way.”
What if you could have a software robot to flawlessly synchronize your documents’ contents with your data in one click? InCatalog — with the easy-to-use data linker panels — enables you to create transparent links between your documents and your databases or spreadsheets. Once you have links in place, you can update prices, graphics, or product information with a simple menu invocation—or even change versions or swap languages.
InCatalog is a Plug-in to Adobe InDesign that enables you to link document elements (both text and graphics!) to corresponding database elements, and gives you the power to update in both directions (document from database, database from document). You can also make locale-sensitive versions (e.g., changing prices or swapping languages), and more.
Using InCatalog for InDesign, you can work with delimited ASCII text files created from any database, spreadsheet, or other application, on-line using FileMaker Pro under Mac OS, or on-line using any ODBC-accessible database under Mac OS or Windows (Pro version only).
As a Plug-in to InDesign, InCatalog becomes a seamless part of the InDesign publishing system, once installed. InCatalog runs inside InDesign, under its own menu.
With InCatalog, you can:
Solve version control headaches
Be sure that your document shows the latest info and prices in your database, and that your database shows last-minute changes you’ve made to your document.
Update in both directions
Make changes in either the document or the database, and push the changes in the other direction with no extra work. (No need for intermediate steps such as report creation and extraction.)
Enjoy flexible data sources and destinations
Use off-line simple delimited text data “snapshot” files, on-line FileMaker Pro (and Runtime) databases under Mac OS, and on-line SQL databases such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracle, SQL Server, and Access, using ODBC under Mac OS and Windows (Pro license).
Use transparent data linking
Use the intuitive linking palette to establish links between any database element and any document text element (from a single character to a phrase to a paragraph to a whole story) or any picture element.
Forget about links affecting the printing process (they don’t affect any page layout), but view links on the screen (if you choose) so you can see what you’re doing.
Move links between documents and libraries transparently, for ease of building new documents from old document elements with links intact.
Update interactively as you work
Use the linking palette’s interactive update capability to update the current single link, whole frames/stories, whole groups, or the current spread, even update automatically each time you make a change.
Greatly speed up creation
With pre-linked modules in libraries, drag a module, fill in a key value in one link, and watch the Plug-in fill in the whole module automatically.
Use one-step batch updating
With just one menu selection, make sure all linked document elements match their corresponding database elements.
Work with multiple documents and data sources/destinations
Use multiple open documents and use multiple data sources and destinations for complex jobs, even per-document, switching among them as needed.
Get automatic price styling
Define any number of price styles per publishing project using full tagged text for arbitrary formatting, apply those styles per-link, and have prices fully styled as part of the automated update.
Use powerful key linking options
Select different strategies for obtaining a link’s key field value direct from the link, direct from the linked contents, indirect from another direct link in the current group, or indirect from linked text before or after the current link.
With grouping and indirect keys, build whole modules that require only one key to be set to fully link everything in the module, or build lines or paragraphs of multiple links that are controlled from a single item.
Use tagged text
Enable tagged text support on any link, to capture the full InDesign Tags or Xtags document formatting for any data element.
Use multiple picture placement options
Update graphics, automatically resizing them to fit their destination frame in various ways, or to be left sized as-is.
Be flexible in graphic file naming
Point InCatalog to your picture folders, using aliases/shortcuts in your project control folder. Enable “fuzzy lookup,” which even finds linked graphics files that have filename prefixes or file types/suffixes not given by the data.
Automate with scripting
Script all updating operations for powerful workflow automation.
Enjoy full Unicode support
Use the full Unicode character set in various encodings, for all data files and ODBC connections.
InCatalog comes in two versions, normal and Pro. The only difference is that the Pro version is ODBC-capable, able to talk to any database server that is ODBC-accessible.
Stop worrying about product prices and descriptions in your documents being up to date with your database or spreadsheet, and vice versa. Synchronize everything (in either direction) in a matter of seconds or minutes. With InCatalog, you can rest assured—your documents will always reflect your database contents.