InData • Xdata

Release: InData 2.3.2 for InDesign CS5–CC2015

This quick release addresses an issue with header/footer updating.

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Release: InData 2.3.1 for InDesign CS5–CC2015

This patch introduces our custom installers and addresses a problem with header/footer updating.

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Release: Xdata 4.5.1 for QuarkXPress 9/10/2015

This quick release fixes an application shut-down issue when using Import from File… on Mac OS X.

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Release: InData 2.3 for InDesign CS5–CC2015

This release adds support for just-released InDesign CC 2015, abandons Extension Manager CC in favor of, for now, a manual installation procedure (see below), improves file path handling, and fixes a few additional problems.

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Release: Xdata 4.5 for QuarkXPress 9/10/2015

This release of Xdata adds support for QuarkXPress 2015 (both Windows and Mac OS X!), adds support for QuarkXPress 10 (Mac OS X), and includes a number of fixes and improvements.

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QuarkXTensions porting to Mac OS QuarkXPress 10 and 2015

To paraphrase an old proverb about justice, “the wheels of Em Software development turn slowly, but grind exceedingly fine.”

It’s been a very long time since we’ve released any news about our XTensions for QuarkXPress 10 under Mac OS X—the Windows port was done mid-last-year—, mostly because we had no good news to share. We’re a small 4-man company, severely engineering-resource-limited (there’s really only one engineer who could do the work, Chris Roueche). The QuarkXPress 10 Mac OS XTension porting work loomed as a mountain we couldn’t really start climbing until we had cleared away some major obligations (the ports involved converting all code from Carbon to Cocoa, which is a serious change). We kept having to make tough engineering resource decisions over the past year that we judged the best for our customers overall. The end result of those decisions was a major delay affecting some of our QuarkXPress customers, and we’re sorry for that.

Chris was able to start the porting work in earnest this year, and so we’re very happy to show concrete porting progress in the release of Xtags 3.8.4 for QuarkXPress 10 under OS X.

Our current best estimate is that Xdata for QuarkXPress 10 OS X will be available by mid-March, with Xcatalog (the largest of the ports, due to its relatively large user interface) to follow a few weeks later.

The good news is that, once these ports are done, there shouldn’t be any more serious mountains to climb for future releases of QuarkXPress.

As a case in point, we’re also simultaneously producing versions of these XTensions for QuarkXPress 2015, which is due in late March, according to Quark. If you’d like to test our prerelease versions of Xtags—and perhaps Xdata if we hit our target—under the QuarkXPress 2015 beta, please contact support, and we’ll put you in touch with the Quark 2015 beta test folks (who will require you to join their beta program under NDA, so only ask if you’re serious).

Release: InData 2.2.3 for InDesign CS5–CC2014

This patch release lets Mac users select any file for import.

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Release: InData 2.2.2 for InDesign CS5–CC2014

This patch release fixes a problem with custom subfield delimiters.

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InData builds 2100-page directory for RIBA

Phil Handley, Design and Production Manager, and Michèle Woodger, Content Editor, share with us how they built a complex directory for the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

RPS2014_Flexy_CoverThe RIBA Product Selector directory is a hard-copy publication featuring construction product information and advertising material, distributed to 20,000 architects each year. The publication contains 8 different indexes with cross references, 800 pages of advertising material and a further 500 pages of educational/continuing professional development information. Until 2013 it was published as a 2500 page, two-volume hardback set, with four corresponding websites making use of the same data.

The directory has been in print since 1982, and due to this formidable 32 year history, the business workflows were complex (advertisements and indexes are handled by two distinct teams), the pre-existing, un-user-friendly DTP software was no longer suitable, and the directory contents were in need of a design refresh.

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Release: InData 2.2.1 for InDesign CS5–CC2014

This release adds compatibility with InDesign CC 2014 and a few minor fixes.

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Release: Xdata 4.4 for QuarkXPress 9/10

This release of Xdata adds support for QuarkXPress 10 (Windows only, for the moment), discontinues support for QuarkXPress 8, and includes a number of improvements.

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Release: InData 2.1.1 for InDesign CS5/CS5.5/CS6/CC

This patch release includes a fix for a problem that could cause InDesign to shut down in some OS X 10.6 and 10.7 configurations.

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David Blatner’s new data publishing tutorial

David Blatner has released a brand-new data merge and data publishing tutorial on As with anything by the InDesign Secrets crew, it’s quite well done.

This new tutorial also includes a 5-minute overview of our InData product, called “InData, a more powerful Data Merge“. The folks have kindly made this video freely viewable.

Release: InData 2.1 for InDesign CS5/CS5.5/CS6/CC

This release adds support for InDesign CC and includes, among other things, a number of new functions for working with strings.

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Release: InData 2.0.4 for InDesign CS5/5.5/6

This patch release improves cross-reference handling and primary text flow support.

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Release: InData 2.0.3 for InDesign CS5/5.5/6

This update of InData addresses header/footer issues when working with facing pages, adds a new picture positioning option, and makes all flavors of snapshot files selectable again.

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Release: InData 2.0.2 for InDesign CS5/5.5/6

This update of InData improves compatibility with FileMaker Pro 12.

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Release: InData 2.0.1 for InDesign CS5/5.5/6

This patch release of InData improves compatibility with Primary Text Frames and fixes an issue with wandering header/footer frames in CS6.

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Release: InData 2.0 for InDesign CS5/5.5/6

We’re pleased to announce a major new release of InData, which, along with various accumulated fixes and improvements, finally adds full support for text anchors, hyperlinks and cross-references.

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Release: Xdata 4.3.4 for QuarkXPress 8/9

This patch release of Xdata addresses an issue with snapshots generated by FileMaker Pro 12.

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InData builds annual commercial real estate directory

Mike Docker, InData developer extraordinaire, shares with us how he used InData with InDesign to build an annual commercial real estate directory.

Estates Gazette (EG) is the weekly magazine for the UK commercial property trade, and each year it produces a directory of warehousing and distribution parks across the country with space available for rent or purchase.


The data is held in an Excel spreadsheet, which is updated from information provided by property agents. This comes into the EG offices at different times and is handled by different staff members. Also, each distribution park can be represented by multiple agents, so it is not uncommon for one park to be entered into the spreadsheet several times.

As publication date approaches the agents are reminded to check and amend the data they have provided, and the updated spreadsheet becomes the source for the printed directory.

The magazine’s production team had been using cut-and-paste techniques to get the text on to the page but they approached the task with dread as each year rolled around. I persuaded them to give InData a try.

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Release: Xdata 8/ for QuarkXPress 8/9

This patch release of Xdata addresses an issue with quoted strings in prototypes.

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Release: InData 6/7/ for InDesign CS4/5/5.5/6

This release of InData adds support for Adobe InDesign CS6, officially ends support for CS4, and improves the import experience.

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InData builds antiquarian books catalog

Pia Oliver at Randall House Rare Books in Santa Barbara tells how they use InData to save “enormous time.”

Randall House featuredWe create our rare book catalogues utilizing InData to get the data from our database into our layout program. We use FileMaker Pro v.10 and InDesign CS4 (previously we used QuarkXpress). Since our data is very strictly formatted and our catalogues consist of unique items, averaging 500-800 at a time, it would be dreadful having to do all this formatting by hand. The plug-in saves us enormous time.

(Click on the graphic above for the full pdf version.)

I have attached a pdf of the finished product of one of our catalogues created this way. All of the information for the books are taken from approximately 25 different fields for each record/book. I first began using InData for a catalogue that consisted of more than 1,000 books.

InData helps a building materials company

Dave Karras, Marketing Manager at Wimsatt Building Materials, has a great success story about using InData to build a whole range of marketing materials.

Wimsatt featuredAs a wholesale distributor of building products, Wimsatt Building Materials delivers roofing, siding, insulation, windows, doors, and composite lumber to builders and contractors across the state of Michigan. With 20,000+ SKUs in over 1500 categories, our Marketing Department had a formidable challenge in communicating building product information to several audiences across multiple media. Our annual printed contractor catalog, our regularly-updated internal price pages, and our online catalog were all isolated production processes that required a great deal of manual effort on the part of the design team and proofreading on the part of our Inventory Department.

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Beta release: InData 8.1.9 beta 1 for InDesign CS6

We’re happy to announce the immediate availability of InData 8.1.9 beta 1 for Adobe InDesign CS6. We’re looking forward to seeing the layouts folks come up with by combining InData with CS6’s new Liquid Layout and Alternate Layout features.

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Release: InData 6/7.1.9 for InDesign CS4/5/5.5

This minor release adds ExtendScript access to InData’s import methods on Mac OS as well as full scripting access to InData’s prototype story and story names.

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Server plug-ins for InDesign CS5/5.5 Server

We’re pleased to announce that we now have server versions of our popular, field-proven data publishing solutions available for Adobe InDesign CS5 Server and Adobe InDesign CS5.5 Server.

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Release: InData 6/ for InDesign CS4/5/5.5

This patch release addresses issues with scripting, indent-to-here characters, the format() function and CJK systems.

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Release: Xdata 8/ for QuarkXPress 8/9

This patch release of Xdata addresses problems with the format() function and adds pass-thru of the indent-to-here character.

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Release: Xdata 8/ for QuarkXPress 8/9

This minor release of Xdata fixes some long-standing data format issues.

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Release: InData 6/ for InDesign CS4/5/5.5

This release simply adds compatibility for Adobe’s 7.5.1 update to InDesign CS5.5.

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Xdata samples featured on Quark’s web site

Quark has recently featured a couple of Xdata samples on their web site.

The first, at Directories and Yearbooks: Automate the Publishing of Directory-style Documents, has the caption John Catt Educational‘s 2011 publications were created using Em Software’s Xdata XTension for QuarkXPress in conjunction with databases created by consultant Roger Fuller. (John Catt Educational is UK-based, and Roger Fuller can be reached at; Roger is a long-term Em associate, and we can recommend him highly.)

The second, at Catalogs and Circulars: Limitless Design Flexibility, has the caption Mike Docker, Deputy Production Editor at Caterer & Hotelkeeper Magazine, said these guides involved a lot of coding at first but using Em Software’s Xdata XTension for QuarkXPress paid dividends for years afterwards.

(In both cases, you have to click on the embedded picture to see the samples.)

Three Trick Pony’s InData/Xdata showcase

Mike Docker of Three Trick Pony (UK) is now showcasing InData/Xdata on his web site.

These are beautiful applications of our tools, and should give you a good idea about what you can accomplish with the same set of tools.

Mike is available for consulting, and can be contacted via email from the footer of his site.

Release: Xdata 8/9.4.3 for QuarkXPress 8/9

This release of Xdata adds support for QuarkXPress 9 to that for QuarkXPress 8, drops support for both QuarkXPress 6 and 7 and includes a couple of minor fixes.

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Release: InData 6/7.1.8 for InDesign CS4/CS5

This release sees the addition of sister-product Xdata’s format() function, support for the &it tag in XPress Tags-styled text and compatibility with InCatalog 6/ and later.

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Em 9.x XTensions now available for QuarkXPress 9

Quark announced recently that QuarkXPress 9 is set to ship on April 26th (later this month), with a “test drive” version available until then on the Quark web site.

We’re delighted to announce that the 9.x versions of our XTensions–compatible with the final QuarkXPress 9 release–are now available from the right sidebar of this post, and from the respective product pages.

This version of QuarkXPress looks to have a tremendous set of new features and improvements, and should be a must-have upgrade for anyone who wants to build e-books or make mobile apps from QuarkXPress content. This new version also catches up to its main competitor in various ways: conditional styles, bullets and numbering, callouts, story editing, etc.

One of the new features of QuarkXPress 9 that greatly improves our products is the new anchored-table-breaking ability. This means you’ll be able to create anchored tables in Xdata that break automatically over column or page boundaries.

InDesign Secrets podcast talking about InCatalog, InData

The latest InDesign Secrets podcast—from David Blatner and Anne-Marie Concepcion—talks at some length about both InCatalog and InData. (The lead-in to our products starts around 11:00, but the whole podcast is gold for data publishers.)

These podcasts are always great, but this one is particularly relevant to anyone interested in our products.

One nit, though: David talks about InCatalog being the big brother of InData, which isn’t quite true: it’s more like a brother who does something fairly distinct but complementary. (InData builds, InCatalog links, very roughly.)

Release: InData 6/7.1.7 for InDesign CS4/CS5

This release adds unfettered anchored box sizing and includes a couple of minor fixes.

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Release: Xdata 6/7/8.4.2 for QuarkXPress 6/7/8

This release adds unfettered anchored box sizing, adds support for Arabic publishing, text anchors and hyperlinks, and includes a number of minor fixes.

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InData and Xtags CS5 updates now available

We’re delighted to announce that both InData and Xtags for CS5 (and CS4) are now officially released, and available for download and purchase from their respective product pages:

InData for InDesign CS4/CS5

Xtags for InDesign CS4/CS5

InCatalog for CS5 is coming to life in the labs, but is probably still a couple of weeks away from beta test.

Release: InData 6/7.1.6 for InDesign CS4/CS5

This release of InData for InDesign adds support for InDesign CS5 to that for CS4, drops support for CS2/CS3, adds support for Xtags styled text without requiring the Xtags plugin, adds support for inline picture frame tags in Xtags styled text, and allows you to choose which format of styled text you’re using (Xtags or InDesign Tags) on a per-use basis.

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Release: InData 4/5/6.1.5 for InDesign CS2/CS3/CS4

This release of InData for InDesign adds support for missing pictures, and fixes a bug with importing from the clipboard.

(This includes all release notes back to the beginning of the CS2/CS3/CS4 series.)

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Release: Xdata 6/7/ for QuarkXPress 6/7/8

These notes cover all the 6/7/8-series Xdata releases.

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Release: InData 3/4.1.2 for InDesign CS/CS2

This release supports InDesign CS2 as well as CS, and features a small set of additions and fixes.

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Release: Xdata 6/ for QuarkXPress 6/7

These notes include all releases in the Xdata 6/7 series.

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Release: InData 2/3.1.1 for InDesign 2/CS

This set of releases fixes a whole raft of bugs, and adds features such as full Unicode support and scripting access to header updating.

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Release: InData 2.0 for InDesign 2

This release includes a whole slew of fixes and small features that you’d expect early in the life of a product.

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Release: InData 1.2 for InDesign 1

This release fixes a whole bunch of early-product-life bugs.

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