BarTender Intelligent Templates­™ — conditional printing

August 21, 2019

Label System Management

BY ELIZABETH SINCLAIR, BARTENDER SENIOR MANAGER OF MARKETING

Dynamic design techniques

There are several techniques you can use to create a dynamic design:

  • Use conditional printing to set conditions that specify when objects, layers or entire templates are printed.
  • Run custom Visual Basic script (VBScript) in response to certain document-level events. By using VBScript, you can alter any object's appearance by changing its color, font, position, size or border.
  • Use automatic sizing for text, barcode and picture objects to make the objects fit a designated space on your template.
  • Use suppression to automatically hide text on your template based on conditions that you specify.

We’ll cover all the techniques in future blog posts. Today’s post is about conditional printing

Use conditional printing to specify exactly when different objects, layers or templates in your document are printed. For example, you can configure a graphic to be printed under one condition but not under any others. Or, you can choose to print a template based on a value in your database. You can conditionalize printing for as much or as little of your design as you want.

About conditional printing

Conditional printing is based on conditional operators. For example, your conditions for printing might be based on whether the conditionalized item contains or does not contain certain text, numeric values, or images, or on whether the conditionalized item is less than, greater than, or equals a particular value. Apply conditional printing to objects, layers or templates — it all depends on how much of your design you want to change at print time.

Conditionally Printing Objects

When a design calls for only one object to change for multiple items, consider setting up conditional printing for that one object. By doing so, you can print (or not print) one object based on conditions that you specify. This technique is useful when you need different objects to appear in variations of the same template. All of these objects can be conditionally printed:

  • Barcodes
  • Encoder objects
  • Text objects
  • Line objects
  • Shape objects
  • Layout grid objects
  • Table objects
  • Pictures

Conditionally printing layers

When you have a complex design in which multiple objects are the same among all designs but other objects change, consider using conditional layers. A layer is an object or group of objects that occupies a single plane in the label file. If you’re familiar with using Photoshop, you’re familiar with the concept of layers. Layers are stacked on top of one another.

How layers work in BarTender

In BarTender, each layer can contain one or more objects. When you need to dynamically print multiple objects on your template at different times, you can put the objects on different layers and then conditionalize the layers to be printed when certain conditions are met. You use the When to Print dialog for each layer to specify when that layer is printed, just as you do when you conditionalize an object.

Conditionally printing templates

When one piece of information can alter the entire layout of the document that you want to print, consider creating two or more different templates for the same document, contained in the same label file. You can configure templates to be printed by using either conditional printing or template selectors.

A good example of a use case for conditionally printing templates would be a company that has two offices, one in Seattle and the other in New York. All of the employees are listed in the same database, and you need to print business cards for all of the employees. The office in Seattle uses one design for their business cards, and the office in New York uses a different design. BarTender can save each design saved as a separate template within the same BarTender document.

Advantages of conditional printing and BarTender Intelligent Templates™

By using the powerful variable data handling of BarTender’s Intelligent Templates, you can capture time- and money-saving new efficiencies in your labeling and business processes. Intelligent Templates enable your single source of truth strategy and reduce the number of files your company has to manage.

For more information about Intelligent Templates™ and conditional printing, please visit our BarTender Support site article, Introduction to conditional printing, or watch our video, Conditional printing with layers in BarTender.

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