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29 - How To Use Conditional Text In Adobe InDesign CC


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Hi there, welcome to this video, all about Conditional Text. I love Conditional Text. What it is, it allows you to have kind of option A and option B for something. In our case we've got US dollars for this shelf here, and we've got New Zealand dollar price. It allows us to have one InDesign document but allows us to do this, where I can say, actually I want to print off a PDF for just New Zealand dollars, and you'll notice that it really flows the text. Unlike layers, we can kind of just turn them on and off, this reflows and kind of flows up to these brackets here.

Let's say I want to make another PDF for just US dollars. You could have Euros, Australian dollars, all sorts of dollars. Not just currency, it can be sizes. You might have UK, US sizes, it might be UK, US spelling. One big document, and have two spelling variations. It could be wholesale or retail pricing. It could be other things. I can't think of anything else to use it for at the moment. I'll come up with some more during the course, but you get the basic idea. Let's learn how to do it now in InDesign.

So first thing we're going to do is, I'm on page 3, we're going to open up our 'Exercise Files' and open up '03 Magazine', and open up 'Magazine Text'. I want you to copy this stuff here. So it's the prices for some of my shelves, I'm going to copy it. On the shelves page, we're just kind of like generate a paragraph where it was done before. Just making a space for it. I'm going to have a full stop and a capital letter. Then I'm just going to paste this in. So this is our US dollar price. What we need to do now is, just afterwards I'm going to put in a space and I'm going to put in another price.

Now, depending on-- it's up to you, you might pick-- so I'm from New Zealand, I might pick New Zealand dollars. In terms of the actual digit value it's twice as much as Euros, you can go through and do that. So I'm going to go through and do it for all of these. I'll get Jason or Tayla to speed this up. I'm finished with the addition. That's quite a long time.

So what we're going to do now is apply our conditions. So what I'd like to do is, be able to turn the button on and off so that I can switch between US and New Zealand prices without having to have two InDesign documents. Let's go to 'Window', 'Type & Tables', 'Conditional Text'. Everything is conditional, I've got nothing selected I'm going to make two conditions. One is going to be 'US Dollar'. I'm going to make another one, and this one's going to be 'NZ Dollar'. You can see, by default, down the bottom it's going to have an appearance of a wavy line with red underneath. You can change this to be a Highlight rather than Underline, you can play around with these. 'Underline', 'Wavy' seems to work fine.

So what I'm going to do is grab my Type tool. I'm going to click over them, and drag it across. You'll notice that I grabbed that first space in front of 50. I'm going to zoom in a bit. It's just because, when this gets removed there's a space here, before the New Zealand dollars. So this is going to kind of lump forward, and if I don't, and if I just have this I'm going to be left with two spaces, but I want this, and I want you to be US Dollars. Then I want you to be New Zealand Dollars, including that space. I'll say 'New Zealand Dollars'. So there's a couple of things here, you're not seeing the wavy underline, so I'm going to go back to my Black Arrow, click in the background, hit 'W' key to come out of preview mode. Now you can see them down the bottom there.

Another thing to be careful of is, say here, I want you, and I want you to be US Dollars, and I want all of this. I don't want to get this space after here, this little space afterwards because this will suck into the return that breaks the line down to here. We'll look at it, I'll do this one by accident, I'll leave that in there so we got an example. So don't do that. US Dollars, so grab all of it, but not that. And we want New Zealand Dollars, okay, I'll get it to speed it up again. Go for it.

So that is all the magic done. I got nothing selected in the background now, what we can do is turn the eyeball off the US Dollars, and watch the NZ Dollar flow. Awesome! So that's the big thing with Conditional Text, is that, even that thing that I broke didn't actually break. I didn't actually grab that, actually put in a return. Just happens sometimes. Actually, if I turn any of those off, yes, that works, that's what works. So, if I turn New Zealand Dollars off, because I've got that return included into it that return breaks this line, but without it, this line tries to sneak up, watch. Oops, no, that one.

So if we end up with this, where one line kind of end up jumping up when it shouldn't, you might just have to make sure, and go-- actually, see this bit here? You are Unconditional. Now hopefully, click off, and I turn the Dollars off, and you off, it's fine. That was a long winded explanation, I hope you caught that.

So the big difference doing that, and say, maybe using the Layers panel, you can turn things on and off in the layers. The reason we're not doing that is because we want this text to reflow. We want, where the US Dollars was, we want the NZ Dollars to kind of suck up, and flow into there. Now where I find this really useful, obviously, where it's great, retail, wholesale prices versus UK, US sizings currency values, I've done this lots in them. One of the big uses for it was, when I was doing some-- setting up some templates for some, it was really boring work, it was insurance agencies. They underwrote a whole lot of banks but they all had the exact same policy wording. So, banks in New Zealand, so there were, BNZ had a policy wording that was exactly the same as Westpac, ANZ, all these other banks, so what we did is, we'd update one document in InDesign, and what we did, is where it said "Hey, we the bank, BNZ, hereby… I don't know, insurance speak. And all we did is highlight the word BNZ, and switch it out and have Westpac next to it, next to ANZ, next to all these other banks, and then I could just turn them on and off, and we could do text in the midst of this big, ugly, heavy going policy wording, and then when we're ready to print, we just turn that one on, that one off and go to 'File', 'Export PDF', and it would be all in that right bank's wording.

The same here, we turn it on and off for the other option, then go 'File', 'Print', and that just means we have one InDesign document. That looked after lots of different varieties of banks. Another use for it for me is I have teacher training notes and student training notes, it's the same InDesign document, but I have like, "Hey, this is what you should do in InDesign," and then at the end I have like a little teacher's note, and say "Teachers only, specific," like, "Now is a good time to insert a clever joke about InDesign here.” And I'll highlight it, and make it "Teacher's only" note. So when I'm printing the teacher notes they get all the lame jokes that I came up with, but the students just get the regular old notes. We just got one file to deal with.

So that is Conditional Text. I hope I explained myself well in this one. Wow, I hope you'll watch this one, but I feel it's okay. All right, so let's jump into the next video.

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