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Offline wonderings

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Data merge help
« on: May 03, 2021, 10:36:09 AM »
I am working on a catalogue and have a data merge to do. I have never done multiple records on a single page. I got the basics of it but am stuck where cells are not enlarging to fit the content in it when needed. I have 4 column by 4 rows. I have attached a screen shot of my setup. This gets repeated on the page sequentially. Now the issue is the content that would be in the bottom right box "designed by.." us the names do not all fit in the preset size. I could enlarge it but then there is a huge space and the majority do not need extra room. Is there a way for it to auto size to fit when needed?

Offline Joe

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2021, 10:53:03 AM »
Take a look at this. I've never tried it but it says it is compatible with InDesign's data merge.

https://www.id-extras.com/products/fit-text-to-frame/
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Offline wonderings

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2021, 10:56:19 AM »
Take a look at this. I've never tried it but it says it is compatible with InDesign's data merge.

https://www.id-extras.com/products/fit-text-to-frame/

Thanks, unfortunately no budget to buy a script. This also looks like it just enlarges or reduces the text size, not the cell size to fit. Having never used data merge this way it may be a limitation of the merge and I need to make the cell bigger to fit all the text without reducing text size.

Offline wonderings

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2021, 11:04:18 AM »
Think I have a work around that only adds a little bit of manual adjusting. I had my cells set to be an exact size so they would not move. When I turned the cell to be at least a certain size they reflowed and enlarged as needed. Now the tables do not go right on top of each other for formatting that is something I can manually fix without a whole lot of time waisted.

Offline DigiCorn

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2021, 12:32:11 AM »
We used to merge to file, and then fix the offending records manually. Most of our data merges in-house were a few thousand records, and we typically merged <500 records at a time (trays usually max at 380 or so for USPS), so you'd only have to fix a couple out of the whole batch.

If you ever spend the <$1000 to get Fusion Pro, it will make that adjustment upon checking a box, and could be modified with a simple script adjustment.
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Offline wonderings

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2021, 07:59:42 AM »
We used to merge to file, and then fix the offending records manually. Most of our data merges in-house were a few thousand records, and we typically merged <500 records at a time (trays usually max at 380 or so for USPS), so you'd only have to fix a couple out of the whole batch.

If you ever spend the <$1000 to get Fusion Pro, it will make that adjustment upon checking a box, and could be modified with a simple script adjustment.

Would fusion pro be used for a merge inside a catalogue? Not addressing or anything for mailing but a list of products sequentially over a span of pages? Pretty much all the variable I do is simple mailing which Indesign handles perfectly. I just get these unique cases every now and then and am left scrambling to figure it out on a deadline.

Offline scottrsimons

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2021, 09:20:51 AM »
I wish I could find the job I did in Indesign that had the similar issue, which I solved using GREP to fix this while it did the data merge. But I don't remember the job at this point. And we use FusionPro for most of our variable data jobs.

But it was something like this: Episode 3: Using GREP styles to fit text into a text frame in InDesign - https://youtu.be/TFzWt_hrS-A.
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Offline wonderings

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2021, 11:09:51 AM »
I wish I could find the job I did in Indesign that had the similar issue, which I solved using GREP to fix this while it did the data merge. But I don't remember the job at this point. And we use FusionPro for most of our variable data jobs.

But it was something like this: Episode 3: Using GREP styles to fit text into a text frame in InDesign - https://youtu.be/TFzWt_hrS-A.

Thanks for the video! Did not know that was even possible and would have made life much simpler for a few jobs where I had to manually adjust longer company names on certificates.

Offline jwheeler

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2021, 01:03:28 PM »
Check out "DesignMerge" by Meadows Publishing. This is a VDP plugin for InDesign. Fusion Pro is great, but it's for PDF's and has some limitations since you're not working with the native document. The 'pro' version of DesignMerge has some very powerful rendering output options so the files don't bottleneck at your print controller. Here's a link to DesignMerge: https://meadowsps.com/designmerge-pro/

EDIT: One more thing I forgot to mention, is that since it is working with the native InDesign document, you can now make EVERYTHING variable. Including changing the typeface, the color of the font, the color of the background, and of course, scaling the text to auto fit.

Offline wonderings

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2021, 02:08:51 PM »
Check out "DesignMerge" by Meadows Publishing. This is a VDP plugin for InDesign. Fusion Pro is great, but it's for PDF's and has some limitations since you're not working with the native document. The 'pro' version of DesignMerge has some very powerful rendering output options so the files don't bottleneck at your print controller. Here's a link to DesignMerge: https://meadowsps.com/designmerge-pro/

EDIT: One more thing I forgot to mention, is that since it is working with the native InDesign document, you can now make EVERYTHING variable. Including changing the typeface, the color of the font, the color of the background, and of course, scaling the text to auto fit.

Thanks for the link, looks interesting but honestly and no offence to you, I hate when prices are not posted on their website and demos require you to request one. I should not have to go through a sales person just to see if it would even be in budget and worth while. And again no demo unless I request and then I am assuming a sales person gets a hold of me to try and get me to buy rather then letting me check it out and search on my own. If I have questions I would ask. My VDP needs are light, what I am dealing with now is the first time I have ever come across this so I am not going to go through all the hoops just to get a price and a demo. This is 2021, none of this should be necessary. I guess this is where this emoticon is used  :git off mah lawn:

Offline david

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2021, 02:13:10 PM »
looks like you can get a free version...
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Offline pspdfppdfxhd

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2021, 04:52:48 PM »
We use designmerge and it is expensive. Only need it about 4 times a year at this point but if you want to keep it going there is an annual fee of about 900 dollars US. Plus the initial output of a few grand for the pro version. Its good though. You can output to PDF/VT and ppml which rally speeds up rip times. I tried fusion pro and did not like it at all. Too many font issues for my liking. Its nice to work in indesign with designmerge and it can even do step and repeat, cut and stack etc., with variables. Boss doesn’t seem to mind paying for it so i don’t care.

Offline pspdfppdfxhd

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2021, 04:54:28 PM »
looks like you can get a free version...

You can get a demo but nothing is free with designmerge. Been there done that.

Offline pspdfppdfxhd

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2021, 05:10:50 PM »
One thing i really like about designmerge is the ability to use master page variables. For example if you have 5 different letters being used on a criteria based on something like a segment code in the data file, you can set them up on 5 master pages. And within that master you can embed other variables like names etc. When you pay for the yearly fee you get great online support from experts really quickly. And believe me, most new users will need it.

Our version is actually branded as EngageIt by Konica Minolta and if you are going to buy or lease a Konica Minolta, you might be able to negotiate them throwing in in the deal for you.

Offline pspdfppdfxhd

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Re: Data merge help
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2021, 05:17:59 PM »
I am working on a catalogue and have a data merge to do. I have never done multiple records on a single page. I got the basics of it but am stuck where cells are not enlarging to fit the content in it when needed. I have 4 column by 4 rows. I have attached a screen shot of my setup. This gets repeated on the page sequentially. Now the issue is the content that would be in the bottom right box "designed by.." us the names do not all fit in the preset size. I could enlarge it but then there is a huge space and the majority do not need extra room. Is there a way for it to auto size to fit when needed?

Back to the original question, there is a very sophisticated copyfit module in designmerge but i have not used it. I just check longest lines and stuff in the variables and stuff and wing it.