Scribe Tools for InDesign Documentation

Scribe Tools for InDesign are a suite of integrated scripts that make it easier to typeset Well-Formed Document Workflow books and to export adaptable content.

Install or Update Scribe Tools

Unzip the file. Open the Scripts panel in InDesign. In the Scripts panel, use the Reveal in Finder/Explorer option to find the User folder. Copy the ScribeTools folder into the Scripts Panel folder. (On a PC, the correct ScribeTools folder might be within a folder with the same name or with an “scr-” prefix.)

To Install Scribe Tools

Expand the ScribeTools folder in InDesign’s Scripts panel. Select and run the scr-install.jsx file. Restart InDesign. A Scribe Tools menu will display along the top of the application.

Once installed, the Scribe Tools folder will be found in the following location:


[DRIVE]:\Users\[USER]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\InDesign\Version [VERSION #]\en_US\Scripts\Scripts Panel\ScribeTools


[HDD NAME]\Users\[USER]\Library\Preferences\Adobe InDesign\Version [VERSION #]\en_US\Scripts\Scripts Panel\ScribeTools

To Update Scribe Tools

Replace the current ScribeTools folder with the updated one and restart InDesign. If the tools do not update, rerun scr-install.jsx and restart InDesign.

Using Scribe Tools for InDesign

File Information

Get Character Code

Returns the character code of the first character in the text selection and provides a link to more information online. Also available from the context menu.

Get File Information

Returns file statistics for the active file, all open files, or files selected from a directory.

Prepare for Export

Export .sam from InDesign

See Export .sam from InDesign for information on the use of these tools.

Export IDTT from InDesign

See Export IDTT from InDesign for information on the use of these tools.


For information on the use of Add Endnote Page Ranges, see Endnote Page Ranges.

Increment Selected Endnotes

Adds one to each endnote number or endnote reference within the selected text. This is useful when a note has been added, deleted, or moved. Also available from the context menu.

Decrement Selected Endnotes

Subtracts one from each endnote number or endnote reference within the selected text. This is useful when a note has been added, deleted, or moved. Also available from the context menu.

Creates hyperlinks between endnote numbers and endnote references for use in web-ready PDFs. (This procedure is not related to linking in e-books, which is handled within the Digital Hub.)

Tabify Endnotes

Adjusts tab settings for endnotes to accomodate long endnote numbers.


Place Images

Places images at locations indicated by Scribe image queries. Anchor type, alignment, and scale can be set for each image.

Image queries ({~?~IM: insert [image name] here.}) can be added in Word using the SAI’s Insert Queries tool.

URLs and Linking

Rebreak URLs

Applies Chicago Manual of Style URL-breaking rules to url composed text.

Finds potential URLs, email addresses, and Twitter handles and generates hyperlinks for them. Do not run if the document contains a large number of URLs that should not be linked. Check the Hyperlinks panel for correctness of URLs; in cases where a full URL is not supplied, the generated link may be incorrect. Also available from the Hyperlinks Panel menu.

Creates hyperlinks for internal references (i.e., “see Chapter 2 for more information”) that will be maintained into e-book or web PDF outputs. Check the Hyperlinks panel for correctness of links; false positives are possible, particularly if a book contains references to other books.

Checks hyperlinks for known issues that interfere with exporting XML. InDesign will fail to map styles if it encounters the following scenarios:

  1. Hyperlink that contains a paragraph break
  2. Hyperlink that contains more than one character style (including [None])
  3. Hyperlink that overlaps a character style that extends beyond the text of the link

The tool will indicate hyperlinks that fall into one of these categories so that they can be checked for misapplied character styles and paragraph breaks. Running the tool is recommended for any document that will be exported to .sam if the document contains any hyperlinks. Also available from the Hyperlinks Panel menu.


Ungroup Paragraph/Character Styles

Moves any styles from groups into the main style area and deletes the groups. Alerts the user if any styles appear in more than one group. Also available from the Styles Panel menus.

Unbase All Styles

Removes the “based on” connections between styles so that changes made to one no longer affect others.

List Unmappable Styles

Lists any styles that will not be removed or mapped during Export .sam from InDesign or Export IDTT from InDesign.

Review Nested Styles

Searches for text with multiple character styles in place through some combination of applied, nested, line, or GREP styles. All but one of the character styles will be lost when running the Export tools, so any such conflicts should be resolved prior to running the Export tools.

Because of the potentially high frequency of conflicts between the enref/fnref styles and nested styles, those will not be displayed. These styles are given special consideration when nested styles are localized during the export process. In addition, Export can handle bold, bold italic, and italic versions of embedded styles, so these are not listed as conflicts.

In order to find the nested style conflicts, some minor changes to rarely used style properties are made and then reversed during the process. Character styles are also unbased. This may cause the document to have “unsaved changes” after the tool is run.

Typesetting Adjustments

Apply Breaking Rules

Inserts nonbreaking spaces and/or “no break” text format based on the options chosen.

Center on Longest Line

Indents selected left-aligned text so that the longest line is centered in the text frame. (It makes no change to text that is already centered.) Commonly used for poetry or epigraph formatting. Also available from the context menu.

Center All Poetry on Longest Line

Identifies blocks of poetry based on senseline (sl) paragraph styles and applies the Center on Longest Line feature to each block.

Center and Decimal Align Cell Content

Indents text in selected cells so that the longest line is centered in the text frame and the other lines are decimal-aligned relative to that line. Can be run on an entire table or on selected columns or cells. Also available from the context menu.

Tabify Selected Dialogue

Adjusts tab settings for the selected dialogue to accomodate long names. This feature is meant to be used on dialogue paragraphs that use a right-aligned speaker, left-aligned speech format.

Tabify All Dialogues

Identifies blocks of dialogue based on dialogue (dia) paragraph styles and applies the Tabify Selected Dialogue feature to each block.

Increment Selection by Style

Adds to (or subtracts from) each instance of a number in the specified styles within the selected text.

Set/Reset sam DTD Location

Allows for resetting the saved DTD location.

Go To Documentation

Opens this documentation in the browser (requires an active internet connection).