Auto-numbered Editable Tables in InDesign

Leaderboard/League/Rankings tables (or indeed any other tabular data that needs frequently updating) used to be a real headache, but InDesign CC goes a long way to smoothing that out. A few weeks back I met someone who has to work on updating performance tables for various publications, every week and it took up a disproportionate amount of time to move the data around and renumber the rows, even though the data didn’t change much in many of the tables—just the position in the ranking and an image that indicated an advance or decline in the rankings.

The Trouble With Tables

Like many other people, there were various coping strategies employed to moving the data around, including all of the usual suspects, like having a blank table in a new document and using it as a kind of super-clipboard, or adding and removing rows in the original table and copying information between rows, then putting all the images in their place. Tedious, even to write about, let alone perform (day-in, day-out).

InDesign CC to The Rescue

InDesign gained the ability to move rows and columns by dragging almost two years ago, and in 2015 could have graphic cells that could contain images, so that fixed two of the problems in the example I’m citing here. The last thing that was required was renumbering the newly-sorted table, and in this movie, you’ll see how a numbered list comes to the rescue!

Save You Time?

Please feel free to share the post and tweet me @tonyharmer if this movie and any/all of the techniques helped your own work—especially if you can give me an idea of how much time you think/know you’re saving!

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