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What is a Table of Contents?

A table of contents often abbreviated as TOC is a number of pages in a document that outline the titles and/or gives a brief description of the first-level headers, second level headers or even third level headers in more detailed books and documents. The TOC usually comes after the title page, the copyright notices as well as the abstract. It also appears before any list of tables or figures, the foreword and the preface.

In a printed table of contents, the page numbers will indicate where each part starts. In a digital table of contents hyperlinks connect to the specific sections. The location and the format will be determined by the publisher. For the case where page numbers appears after heading texts, some characters referred to as leaders might precede them. They are usually dots or periods that run from the section or chapter to the page numbers on the opposite side of the page.

Mapsoft TOCBuilder

Combine the advantages of both a printed and digital TOC.

TOCBuilder is an Adobe Acrobat plug-in that allows you to:

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Each entry within the Table of Contents can show the appropriate page for that entry (as in a traditional Table of Contents for a printed document). In addition each entry within the Table of Contents is also linked to the actual heading within the document to which that entry relates. Selecting that link from within the Table of Contents will cause the focus in the document to jump to the relevant text. The Table of Contents is thus a powerful tool for navigating around your document.

Mapsoft TOCBuilder interface

The Table of Contents can be hierarchical, with sub-sections being indented below higher level sections, or it can be flattened with all entries appearing at the same level. Using options within the TOCBuilder you control the positioning and appearance of all the entries within a Table of Contents.
TOCBuilder uses bookmarks found within a document to generate the Table of Contents.

The bookmarks used by TOCBuilder to generate a Table of Contents could have been created directly within Acrobat, or they could have been created by using the Mapsoft BookMarker tool. BookMarker creates list of bookmarks from the headings found within a document. Typically, most large documents are organised by chapter, section and sub-section, and BookMarker uses these different heading levels to create a hierarchical set of bookmarks.

If the original bookmarks within a document are hierarchical, then the resulting Table of Contents will be hierarchical too. In a hierarchy, subordinate items are indented to the right. Each different heading level within the Table of Contents will correspond to one of the hierarchical levels within the bookmark list. Thus, TOCBuilder will create a level 1 Table of Contents entry for each level 1 bookmark found within the document. It will create a level 2 Table of Contents entry for each level 2 bookmark and so on. Options you specify to the TOCBuilder tool control the appearance and positioning of each different heading level within the generated Table of Contents.

The number of levels to which the Table of Contents can be nested depends on the level to which the bookmarks have been nested. For example, if bookmarks are nested to four levels then you can set up to four different levels of entries in a Table of Contents.

When used in combination with Automator and other Plug-in Suite tools, you have unrivalled flexibility and power to edit, modify or standardize many files in one easy operation. The processing can be applied to the current file only, or all files in any number of specified directories, or to specifically selected files, or any combination of these options.

The Mapsoft PDF plug-ins are especially useful where there is a requirement to comment, markup or edit pdf documents for publishing purposes especially where automation may be an important factor.

A tryout version of the product is available.

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