Posts in Category "Digital Publishing"

Link to DPS App Using Custom URL Scheme

The “Optional URL Scheme” option in Viewer Builder is a relatively obscure feature that can come in handy. If you’re viewing this blog post on an iPad or iPhone in mobile Safari, tapping the following link opens the DPS Tips app if you have it installed (and updated to the newest version):


NOTE: If you click this link from a computer browser, you get an error message. Similarly, if you tap the link on an iPhone or iPad on which DPS Tips is not installed or updated, you get a “Cannot Open Page” error message. It’s useful only when you tap this link on an iOS device that has the newest version of DPS Tips installed.

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DPS Tips Paywall URL

This is a paywall test for the new social sharing feature in v20. When you reach the limited to the number of articles you can read in the desktop web viewer, a paywall appears. I previously set the threshold to 3 for the DPS Tips app, and I just recently updated it to 12. Obviously, setting up a paywall is more useful with retail content than with a free educational app. Again, I set up my paywall for demonstration purposes.

[Note: I disabled the Web Viewer Paywall entirely in DPS Tips. To see an example of how the paywall can be used, see this Newsweek cover article and swipe to the next article.]

For obtain full access to the DPS Tips app, click this link: DPS Tips. The new version with social sharing enabled is available in the App Store. You can also download the DPS Tips app on your iPhone.

See the Using social media help article for more information on the workflow. Also see this article about setting up social sharing for Facebook.

DPS Tips iPad App Updated

Apple approved the new version of the DPS Tips app.

Instead of simply updating the app, which is usually the easiest approach, I recommend that you remove DPS Tips and then install it from the App Store. Re-installing is especially important if you have an iPad 3. A current limitation prevents the high-resolution rendition folios from being available if the library has ever “noticed” the low-resolution folios, even if you haven’t downloaded them. This issue should be fixed in one of the upcoming releases. If you’re creating renditions for your folios, remember to publish both renditions before you notify users with a push. To be safe, the best approach is to publish the high-resolution rendition first.

The DPS Tips has been approved for the Apple App Store and Android Market, though I haven’t updated the Android content. Amazon still hasn’t approved the app due to a beta in-app purchase issue that should be resolved soon.

Here are some changes I made to the app:

* I added renditions by using one set of 1024×768 source files. If you have an iPad 3, the cover images in the library should include “2048×1536.” If not, remove and re-install the app.

* I divided the old overlays folio into two folios: one basic and one advanced. The advanced folio includes a few new articles and an updated article on pullout tabs. The new pop-up video article includes a rocket launch effect that’s so cheesy not even my 8-year-old son liked it. Colin even asked me not to credit him for the video. I might have to revisit that example.

* I added a new article to the Effects folio that includes an HTML5 scratch-off example. It links to a Cookbooks recipe where you can download and repurpose the HTML code.

Here are some folio size stats. For some reason, the PDF files were relatively much larger than what I had seen in my testing. I need to ask around about a possible bug.

  • Folio Basics: iPad1 – 33 MB (PNG) / iPad3 – 47 MB (PDF)
  • Overlay Basics: iPad1 – 50 MB (PNG) / iPad 3 – 90 MB (PDF)
  • Advanced Overlays: iPad1 – 41 MB (PNG) / iPad 3 – 85 MB (PDF)
  • Effects: iPad1 – 5 MB (PNG) / iPad 3 – 7 MB (PNG)
  • Single Edition: iPad1- 4 MB (PNG) / iPad 3 – 12 MB (PDF)

Differences Between PDF and JPG/PNG Image Format for DPS

When the PDF image format was first made available for DPS articles, the format was limited. Most importantly, interactive overlays were not supported in PDF-based articles, so most designers stuck with the JPG/PNG image format unless they wanted users to be able to pinch & zoom on a page.

With the v18 release of the tools, that changed. Now, all interactive overlays in PDF articles work just as well as they do in JPG/PNG articles.

With the new retina display iPad, using the PDF format has now become the recommended choice for image format. PDF articles are smaller than JPG/PNG articles, and vector content is maintained, resulting in improved scaling. However, there are still some differences between the PDF and JPG/PNG image formats that you should be aware of.

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Guidelines for Creating Folios for SD and HD iPads

Quick Summary

If you’re in a hurry, here’s the executive summary.

  • For iPads, we recommend creating 1024×768 folios with articles in the PDF image format. PDF results in smaller article size and maintains vectors. To avoid rasterizing text in slideshows and scrollable frames, you can choose Vector in the Folio Overlays panel. These articles in PDF image format look great on both SD and HD iPads.
  • For multi-issue viewers, you can create separate SD and HD folio renditions so that the 1024×768 folio appears on the SD iPad and the 2048×1536 folio appears on the HD iPad. This approach is useful if you want to use PNG or JPG image format instead of PDF. The easiest rendition approach is to create 1024×768 source documents and use these as the basis for both the 1024×768 folio and the 2048×1536 folio. You might want to show/hide layers for certain overlays such as pan & zoom images.
  • For single-issue viewers, you cannot create renditions. Create a single 1024×768 folio with PDF image format. For details, see Creating multi-rendition articles for iOS devices.

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DPS Tips Privacy Policy

The DPS Tips privacy policy describes the privacy practices of the DPS Tips app on mobile devices.

DPS Tips collects data about how you use the app, including the type of device you’re using, the number of issues downloaded, and the way in which you interact with the app content. This data is collected anonymously.

Understanding DPS Tool Versions

To create and preview folios for InDesign CS5 and CS5.5, you run two different DPS installers — the Folio Producer tools and the Folio Builder panel. There is only one installer/updater for InDesign CS6, but I’ll get to that later.

Why two installers for InDesign CS5/CS5.5?

Two reasons. First, Adobe doesn’t want to force publishers to rebuild and resubmit their custom app whenever a new set of tools comes out every six or eight weeks. Updating the app should be optional. Second, when Adobe makes certain changes to the Folio Producer Service on the web, the Folio Builder panel needs to be updated to remain in sync with the web client. Publishers need to be able to update the Folio Builder panel without updating the Folio Producer tools.

Should I update when a new version of tools comes out?

That depends on whether you have created a custom viewer app and whether you’re still updating it. If you haven’t created a custom viewer app and submitted it to one of the stores, the situation is simple. Just install the most current versions of the tools, and you’re all set with the new and improved tools. (There is one exception to this guidance. In some instances, Adobe release the new tools before Apple has approved the newest version of the Adobe Content Viewer. If that’s the case, you might want to hold off on updating the tools until Apple approves the viewer.)

If you have submitted a custom viewer app to the store, it depends. You have two choices whenever a new set of tools comes out:

(1) Don’t update your custom viewer. Continue using the older set of tools. If prompted, update the Folio Builder panel. Updating the Folio Builder panel does not update the tools.

(2) Update your custom viewer and submit it to the store. Install both the new set of Folio Producer tools and the Folio Builder panel.

Until the new version of the custom viewer is approved and available, don’t create or edit any folios for that app. Otherwise, when your customers try to view a newer folio in an older viewer, they’ll be prompted to update their app. Although viewers are backward-compatible with previously created folios, folios usually cannot be viewed in earlier viewers. That’s new wine in old bottles. (Or is it old wine in new bottles?)

Where do I get the installers?

You can download these tools from the Adobe Downloads page, the DPS Dashboard, or the Installing digital publishing tools help topic.

How do I know which installers I used?

Here’s how to tell which tools are installed and which tools were used to create a folio.

To see which tools are installed, open the Folio Builder panel and choose “About” from the panel menu. Look at the last numbers. For example, means you’re using the v17 tools.

To see which viewer version you’re using, open the folio in the viewer and tap the title. The first two numbers indicate the viewer version. For example, refers to the 2.2 version of the viewer.

Unfortunately, the viewer version doesn’t match the Folio Producer tools. Here’s how they match up:

v12 (tools) = 1.7 (viewer)
v13 = 1.8
v14 = 1.9
v15 = 1.9  (no change)
v16 = 1.9  (not available for iPad)
v17 = 1.10
v18 = 1.11
v19 = 1.12
v20 = 2.0
v21 = 2.1
v22 = 2.2
v23 = 2.3
v24 = 2.3 (no change)
v25 = 2.4

Starting with v21, it’s possible to specify the viewer version when creating the folio. This feature works only for v20 or later.

For additional details, see the “Please update your app” tech note.

Updating the DPS tools in InDesign CS6

In InDesign CS6, the DPS tools setup is more straightforward. There is only one installer/updater, which you can run by choosing Help > Updates in InDesign. When you select “DPS Desktop Tools,” you update both the DPS tools and the panel. When creating a folio, you can specify which version of the tools the folio is compatible with (v20 or later).

Questions? Leave a comment, or go to the DPS forum.

DPS Best Community Links for November 2011

Lots of good stuff this month in the world of digital publishing.

Updated Digital Publishing Gallery

The old gallery was fine until there were too many apps to navigate through easily. The new Digital Publishing Gallery lets you filter the apps by platform, date, language, or region. And you can search for the app you’re looking for.

DPS Update through a Connect session

Zeke Koch hosted a Connect session in which he shared the latest Digital Publishing Suite updates, answer burning questions and provide sneak peeks into the next stage of the product roadmap.

Rufus Deuchler’s Interactivity Videos

Rufus created a two-part video series about creating interactive overlays. It’s a good way to learn the basics if you’re new to digital publishing.

Video Part I – Hyperlinks, Buttons, and Slideshows

Video Part II – Panoramas, Web Content, Scrollable Frames, Pan & Zoom

Rufus also wrote an interesting article about creating panorama overlays for mobile devices.

DPS App Spotlight

Keith Gilbert is running a series on his blog in which he spotlights interest app published with the Digital Publishing Suite. Here are a couple of examples:

U of Dayton Viewbook

What’s cool about it
In iTunes

National Geographic Magazine

What’s cool about it
In iTunes

Mind Twister Article – Single Orientation Issue with a Twist

Johannes Henseler is always pushing boundaries. Here, he created an interesting effect in which he combined a couple of obscure features to create a folio in which you swipe down to get to the next article. Check out the video.

New Issues in DPS Tips

The DPS Tips app now has a third issue to go along with Folio Basics and Overlays. The Single Edition issue steps through the end-to-end process to creating, publishing, and submitting a single-issue viewer app that can appear in the App Store.

Soon, I’ll add a fourth issue — Effects — that covers more advanced digital publishing techniques such as PDF articles, single-orientation folios, smooth scrolling articles, and various HTML practices. When you see the little red badge next to the DPS Tips app, download the new folio.

I’ve also update the existing folios to include the newest enhancements to the tools.


Did I miss anyone’s article, video, or app? Leave a comment, and let me know what’s good.

This Month in DPS Videos and Articles

DPS Video Tutorials

First, let’s start with a batch of free DPS videos that Colin Fleming created for Video2Brain:

DPS Workflow: The Big Picture

DPS Tools, Subscriptions, and Services

Working with Styles and Layers

Horizontal Swipe Layouts

Hyperlink Actions

Colin has spent a lot of time in front of the camera. Here are some other videos posted recently on Adobe TV:

Viewer Builder

Loading HTML Articles

Sharing Folios

Smooth-Scrolling Layouts

Rufus Deuchler also created a video on using MUSE to create HTML content for DPS

DPS Articles

Here are some useful articles which I linked to in the appropriate help topics. Special thanks to Keith Gilbert and Johannes Henseler in particular for creating great content.

Advanced Scrollable Frames – Johannes shows a cool fadeout he created in his DONE magazine app, which was selected for a MAX award. Johannes also wrote a basic article about creating scrollable frames.

Image resolution for iPad publishing ( – What’s the best image resolution to use for digital publishing? Short answer: 72 ppi.

Change the Order of Articles Using sidecar.xml Generator (Johannes Henseler) – Johannes created a utility that generates a sidecar.xml file.

iPad layout Templates for DPS (Gilbert Consulting) – Download horizontal and vertical templates.

Sharing folios with Adobe DPS (Keith Gilbert) – Keith walks you through the steps of sharing folios with individuals, allowing anyone with a mobile device to view your content. Creating and sharing folios in this manner is free.

Creating Super Overlays (Johannes Henseler) – A background image cannot appear in front of an overlay, but an overlay can appear in front of an overlay. Johannes goes over a few ways to create super overlays to mask interactive content.

Photoshop Extended for DPS (Keith Gilbert) – Keith goes over the ways in which Photoshop Extended helps him create digital publications.

Photoshop Template for App Store and Market Icons (Johannes Henseler) – When you submit a custom viewer app to Apple or Google, a number of icons are required. Johannes creates a template that makes it easy to kick out your icons using the various sizes.

Hiding the Scrollbar of a Scrollable Frame (Johannes Henseler) – When you create a scrollable frame, a scrollbar appears when the customer begins scrolling. But you don’t always want the scrollbar to appear. Johannes provides a workaround to hide the scrollbar.

Did I miss anything? Let me know in comments, and I’ll add a link.


DPS Tips App for Android

Note: This article is old and out of date. DPS Tips currently appears in iTunes App Store, Google Play Store, and Windows Store.

You may already be aware of the Digital Publishing Suite Tips app I published for the iPad. If you’re using Adobe’s tools for digital publishing, you’ll want to download a copy of that app on your iPad. It’s like a cookbook, a blog, and a user guide all rolled into one app. Use it to see what you can do with digital publishing and how you can do it.

For those of you who are publishing content for Android devices such as the Motorola Xoom and Samsung Galaxy (and whatever Amazon has in the works), I created a version of the DPS Tips app. The easiest way to get it is to open the Android Market app on your device, search for “DPS Tips,” and download it.

The Android version includes much of the same content that appears in the iPad app. The app includes two folio renditions — 1024×600 for devices such as the Samsung Galaxy 7″ and 1232×752 for larger devices such as the Xoom and the Galaxy 10.1″. (I used 1232×752 instead of 1280×800 to account for the 48-pixel nav bar that cuts into the view area.) If you have an Android with any other dimensions, the folios will be scaled and letterboxed as needed.

The DPS Tips app is also available for the BlackBerry PlayBook, which displays the same 1024×600 folio rendition that appears in the smaller Android devices. Open App World, search for “DPS Tips,” and download.