Best practices for updating custom books?

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Jkseigle
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Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2016 7:14 pm

Best practices for updating custom books?

Post by Jkseigle »

I have a custom book that is going to get updated about once a week. This is the entire book for a group I am playing with and there are often updates to existing charts and addition of new charts. Rehearsals almost always result in some updates. Occasionally a chart is removed. There are about 400 tunes and over 700 pages. I use an Excel spreadsheet to generate an inventory of songs, and generate the iGigBook index. I copy and page the index into the web page.

I have uploaded the initial PDF and index and everything works.

Suppose I have a three-page chart in the middle of the book. It gets revised to a one-page chart. It seems to me that I have to load a new version of this book into my tablet. Then I have to revise the index to get the paging right. The only way I can find to do this is to delete all the songs, and then start clean with a new file and new index.

Am I missing something or is this the only/best way to do this?
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Phil Smith
iGigBook Specialist
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Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:00 pm

Re: Best practices for updating custom books?

Post by Phil Smith »

The app isn't designed for this type of constant massaging of a PDF as in constantly moving pages around, adding, deleting in the middle, etc. Most of the users aren't interested in constantly modifying a PDF. Having said that, here's what I would be doing if I was in your position.

I would be looking for ways to work efficiently. If I'm using a system that maps pages to song titles (iGigBook) it is no longer required for songs to be in a particular order in a PDF. I now have random access to these songs and that's the way I'm going to use that PDF. I can easily add songs to the PDF by adding them to the end. I then add a entry to the existing index with the page number for the song, sync and I'm done. There's no need for me to remove pages from the PDF, that's the old paper model and it's inefficient. Once I create an index and upload it using Bulk Upload all I need to do is use the Song Tile option in the Content Manager to add or delete songs. I don't have a need to do anything to the PDF unless I'm replacing a page as in, a better readable copy.
Suppose I have a three-page chart in the middle of the book. It gets revised to a one-page chart. It seems to me that I have to load a new version of this book into my tablet. Then I have to revise the index to get the paging right. The only way I can find to do this is to delete all the songs, and then start clean with a new file and new index.
In this scenario, I would add the revised one page chart to the end of the PDF and use the content manager to add an additional song entry to the index for this 1 page version or modify the existing song entry to now point to this new page on the end. Once you delete a page from a PDF that you've created an index for you would need to modify every song entry that has a page number that comes after the one you deleted.
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Jkseigle
iGigBook User
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2016 7:14 pm

Re: Best practices for updating custom books?

Post by Jkseigle »

I can easily add songs to the PDF by adding them to the end.
This seems to be the key here. It did not occur to me that the order of the songs in the physical PDF is irrelevant. I'm only going to use the file for iGigBook so the order doesn't matter. If I need to delete a page I can just insert a blank page to replace it and remove the index entry, with no impact on page numbering.

Thanks for your help!
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Phil Smith
iGigBook Specialist
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Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:00 pm

Re: Best practices for updating custom books?

Post by Phil Smith »

Jkseigle wrote: Fri Jan 06, 2023 12:38 pm
I can easily add songs to the PDF by adding them to the end.
This seems to be the key here. It did not occur to me that the order of the songs in the physical PDF is irrelevant. I'm only going to use the file for iGigBook so the order doesn't matter. If I need to delete a page I can just insert a blank page to replace it and remove the index entry, with no impact on page numbering.

Thanks for your help!
I would view the PDF as just a repository of songs and the index as an address book, with each index entry pointing to a particular song. I would view the set list as the roster for a particular gig or performance. There can be various rosters aka set lists with songs from the "repository" arranged in the order you need them to perform or combine together as a single PDF to send someone who is still using paper. When you look at it this way, your PDF gets larger due to songs being added to it. Removing songs from the PDF is usually not a good idea because you never know when you might want to use that song.
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