Reading Order

NEEDS EDITING Use Reading Order tools from the CircularFLO or GreenLight Accessibility Panels to define and amend the reading order. Overlaid frames show the reading order for easy checking and amendment. Objects are also added, in defined reading order, to the InDesign Articles Panel.

Hiding text from the reading order

Reading Order
Prevent unwanted text being exposed to the reader by assistive technlogy

In some cases we want to show text in a visual publication that has no value or may be disruptive to the reader that is listening to the text being read or using a screen reader. A good example of this is running heads and page numbers which we may want to appear on multiple pages.

By using a Paragraph style whose name starts with the word 'HIDDEN' Circular Software will automtaically hide this from the reading order in the exported EPUB.

A paragraph style named HIDDEN Running Head is applied to the running head text on a parent page

For those who like code… this is achieved by applying the aria-hidden="true" attribute to the container.

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Reading Order

Introduction to reading order

Reading Order
Circular Software Reading Order tools maintain the look of your InDesign spreads but control the reading order.

When faced with a complex spread an experienced, sighted reader will quickly make subconscious decisions on the hierarchy and reading order.

For the best accessibility we should check and, if necessary, redefine the 'reading order' - the order that text on the page is searched and read out - using the CircularFLO Reading Order tools.

When designing a spread in InDesign the order that objects are added to the document is used to define their reading order. This means that often the headings, captions, body text and page numbers can easily be mixed up unintentionally as the document is designed and edited.

The Circular Software Accessibility Tools Panel features three Reading Order Tools to Auto define reading order, Manually define the reading order and to Amend or clear the reading order without changing the design of your spreads.

Reading order is indicated with extra objects applied to the FLO_INFO layer. This layer is on top of the main layers and set to non-printing. Share the visual InDesign by changing the layer to printing or choosing to export non-printing layers when exporting directly from InDesign.

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Reading Order

Proofing reading order and descriptions

Reading Order
Export a proof PDF with overlaid reading order and image description markers

The overlaid markers added with Circular Software act as a visual method to add, edit and apply reading order, image descriptions & section markers

To share these makers with coworkers they can be quickly output to a proof PDF using the following PDF settings in InDesign.

Using InDesign File menu > Export choose a name and select to export a Adobe PDF (Print) file in the dialog shown. Then

  1. Set the page range required and typically choose spreads
  2. Choose to export All Layers
  3. Select to output Non-Printing Objects
The recommended PDF settings for exporting reading order and image description markers

The resulting exported PDF showing the reading order and descriptions that are hidden on export with CircularFLO

Tip: If you need to do this often, then use the Save Preset… button to save a preset to select at the top of this dialog next time.

Please get in touch if you would like to see this feature added to MasterPlan.

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Reading Order