10 Replies Latest reply on Dec 5, 2014 5:16 AM by Polarpro

    FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows

    pthomas

      I work for a publishing company and we are currently using a piece of custom written code (started out as Applescript, has been upgraded to Objective C) to facilitate integration between FileMaker and InDesign.

       

      This code only works on Mac's.

       

      We are needing to move to a full Windows environment (corporate policy) so I am investigating options to replace this custom code.

       

      I remember finding a FileMaker plugin a few months ago that looked promising, but I haven't been able to track it down again.

       

      Does anyone know of any plugin or software that would allow us to easily integrate with InDesign?

       

      We need to generate thousands of ads every year, so any sort of manual export to XML and import is not going to be practical. The current solution works with the click of a single button, extracting the information out of FileMaker and building the ad in InDesign using 1 of many different templates.

       

      Any ideas?

       

      Thanks,

       

      Paul.

        • 1. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
          nickorr

          Paul,

           

          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.

           

          Cheers,

          Nick

          • 2. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
            fmp

            You should consider outsourcing it.

            • 3. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
              wimdecorte

              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.

              • 5. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
                LyndsayHowarth

                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..

                 

                Sent from my iPad

                Lyndsay Howarth

                11th Hour Group Pty Ltd

                • 6. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows

                  Hi Paul,

                   

                  Would it not be easiest to keep a Mac or two for this particular job?

                   

                  Cheers,

                   

                  John

                  • 7. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
                    APIcoder

                    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,

                     

                     

                    You can use JavaScript ( Mac and Windows compatible ) and XML ( XML file or call from JavaScript a http:// fmresultset request ).

                     

                    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 )

                     

                     

                    André

                     

                     

                    [As an Indesign Scripting developer and Filemaker developer I use Indesign JavaScript and AppleScript for database publishing solutions

                     

                    I started with AppleScript, Filemaker and Quark and switch later to Indesign ( AppleScript and VB )

                     

                    Now a days I use 90% JavaScript. One big advandages of JavaScript it works on Mac and Windows

                     

                    JavaScript is a more complete language has better Array and Object handeling,

                     

                    AppleScript (with Script Debugger) gives easier acces to Indesign's Object Model of course AppleScript has its own advantages.]

                    • 8. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
                      rivet

                      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.

                      • 9. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
                        ibrahim_bittar

                        All inData products work great.

                         

                        Year ago I used xData to import xTags data generated from FileMaker into QuarkXpress. Worked flawlessly for years.

                        • 10. Re: FileMaker integration with InDesign on Windows
                          Polarpro

                          Hey Paul,

                           

                          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.

                           

                          Yours,

                          Mike