We've done InDesign integration using XML and either applescript or InDesign Server scripting that was completely automated. I had a client produce 8000 InD PDF Proofs in two weeks using this setup.
InD Server is probably the simplest way, once you've got it setup. There are lots of avenues for both mac and windows control of ID Server. Let me know if you need any other help.
You should consider outsourcing it.
Paul Thomas wrote:
I remember finding a FileMaker plugin a few months ago that looked promising, but I haven't been able to track it down again.
You probably do not want a plugin for any kind of heavy-duty lifting like this. Plugins run in FM's calculation space and will bog down / freeze FM while the routines are running. Go for a some custom piece of middleware that sits between FM and InD.
The way I managed this many (10?) years ago was to calculate then export tagged Indesign text files.
It is not hard to reverse-engineer...
Save a document with your style sheet in use in ID.... Then export as tagged text. That tells you what you need to know for FM Calcs..
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Would it not be easiest to keep a Mac or two for this particular job?
Paul are you using AppleScriptObjC ? or pure Objective C ?
I used 10 years ago a VisualBasic plugin for Filemaker for a Indesign project, but that's not working anymore, also it was not as complete as AppleScript and not as fast
A Filemaker plugin is in my opinion not the right way, If the Filemaker Plugin stops working your work is for large part useless,
Great advantage of using XML is that you can switch to another database without breaking your Indesign Scripting.
If you switch at a later time to another database you have only to write a new XML export module.
Another aprodge is Indesign Server, with Soap calls, you can send arguments directly to Indsign Server,
use Filemaker PHP API or call FMRESULTSET to fill the arguments ( embed as: XML, JSON, or point to a XML file or call http://xx.xx.xx.xx/FMRESULTSET).
You can use C++ writing a custom Filemaker Plugin and use C++ Indesign SDK ( not my chooise )
I started with AppleScript, Filemaker and Quark and switch later to Indesign ( AppleScript and VB )
AppleScript (with Script Debugger) gives easier acces to Indesign's Object Model of course AppleScript has its own advantages.]
Unfortunately this wont help you much but in the interest of flowing data into Indesign or Quark I'll mention this amazing plugin 'InData' . I used xData back in Quark days for a movie network magazine, and recently InData for inDesign on another listing project. The flow logic is done in your InDesign template that way you can always have clean simple data tables.
All inData products work great.
Year ago I used xData to import xTags data generated from FileMaker into QuarkXpress. Worked flawlessly for years.
I worked for a publishing company and we had the same problem: getting FileMaker data into InDesign. My experience and what other FileMaker developers that I know have experienced:
- Trying to import pure xml into InDesign is not very stabel and difficult.
- The plugin InData / xData is easy to use and works quite well.
- The plugin EasyCatalog is perhaps a little more difficult to learn, but very powerful and stable.
I highly recommend to look at the mentioned InDesign plugins. Be aware that you need also some addons (e.g. xTags), depending on what you want to create.