Indexers converge on Sheffield

PRESS RELEASE dated 2003-06-13

As part of its CPD programme, the Society of Indexers (www.indexers.org.uk), which is based in Sheffield, recently ran a pilot training workshop on embedded indexing.

Typically, an indexer produces an index for a book from page proofs that are supplied as paper documents by a publisher. The indexer uses specialist software to create the index in an electronic form (just like any word-processor document). The resultant index file is sent to the publisher, who incorporates the index into the electronic version of the book that is being indexed.

For some types of publication this method is not suitable, and many publishers require embedded indexes. With an embedded index, an indexer inserts markers in the text. These markers identify the index entries (headings) that will appear at the end of the book. Software automatically generates an index from the index markers. If a section of the book is modified, or if a new chapter is added (perhaps when the book is revised), the indexer re-indexes only the parts that have been changed. The modified index can be generated at the click of a button.

Many indexers are now being asked to take source files in Word, and to create embedded indexes in these. (Although it's rare for large publishers to have a need for embedded indexing in Microsoft Word, many smaller publishers and in-house publications departments do use Word.)

As part of its CPD programme, the Society of Indexers asked Mike Unwalla from TechScribe to run a training workshop on embedded indexing in Word. The workshop was held in Sheffield on 12 June, and was an overwhelming success. Dr Krys Bottrill, Principal Indexer of Tehuti Knowledge Services (http://tehuti.co.uk) says, "In just three hours, Mike took me from total ignorance about indexing in Word to feeling that I can tackle anything."

The indexing workshop was over-subscribed by over 40% and so will be held again. The Society is investigating the possibility of running open courses for non-members. See www.indexers.org.uk for more information.

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