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Creating a Table

There are (at least) four ways to create a table.

  • “From scratch.” Click the Text tool inside an existing text frame, then choose Insert Table from the Table menu. InDesign displays the Insert Table dialog box. Enter the number of rows and columns you want in the corresponding fields and click the OK button. InDesign creates the table (see Figure 6-11).

    Figure 6-11. Creating a Table “From Scratch”

    Once you’ve created a table using this approach, you can add text or graphics to the table the same way you would add text to any text frame—click the Text tool inside a cell, then enter text, or paste text or graphics, or place text or graphics into the cell.

  • Converting Text to a Table. To turn a range of text into a table, select the text and choose Convert Text to Table from the Table Menu. InDesign displays the Convert Text to Table dialog box. Select the delimiter characters you want to use, and specify the number of columns, if necessary (InDesign will only display this field when it cannot determine the number of columns in the table, given the specified delimiter characters). Click OK, and InDesign converts the selected text to a table, using the delimiter characters to split the text into table rows and columns (see Figure 6-12).

    Figure 6-12. Converting Text to a Table

    Specify delimiter characters, and the number of columns in the table, if necessary, then click OK.

  • Importing a Table. Another way to create a table is to import a table you’ve saved in a Word, Excel, or RTF document. There’s no trick to this—select a file containing a table in the Place Document dialog box and place it, just as you’d place any other type of file. If there is a table in the document, InDesign will convert it to an InDesign table as you flow the text onto a page.

  • Pasting a table. You can also copy and paste tables from Word and Excel, and from HTML pages displayed in your web browser. Again, there’s no trick—select the table, then copy, return to InDesign, and paste. (Not all HTML tables seem to convert, nor are the results identical from browser to browser, but it does work, at least some of the time. It won’t work unless your browser copies the table to the system clipboard as RTF. David cannot get this to work at all.)



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