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Chapter 8. Long Documents > Indexes (Or Indices)

Indexes (Or Indices)

Sitting down and indexing a book is—in our experience—the most painful, horrible, mind-numbing activity you could ever wish on your worst enemy. And yet, where this is the kind of task that a computer should be great at, it’s actually impossible for a computer to do a good job of indexing a book by itself. A good index requires careful thought, an understanding of the subject matter, and an ability to keep the whole project in your head at all times. In short, it requires comprehension—a quality computer software, at this early stage of its evolution, lacks. Until recently, it also required a large stack of note cards, highlighter pens, Post-It notes, and serious medication.

Fortunately, InDesign has a built-in indexing feature, which, while it won’t make the index for you, does remove the note card and highlighter requirements.


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