Balsamiq Community Discussion

Wireframes and links - Export to pdf

Hi Balsamiq team,
Export to pdf, I want to display the pink icon so that the user is able to know where to click.

Right now, I am not able. I have two behaviours :

  1. If I choose the export option “Optimize for viewing on screen”, the objects containing a link are “completely red” on the pdf.
  2. If I choose the export option “Shrink to fit a page”, the objects containing a link have “gray arrows” on them.

I could be ok with 2., if it is ONE arrow on an object but right now I am getting like 9 arrows on a rectangle!

Is that a known bug?

On the pdf export, how objects with links, are supposed to be displayed? I was expecting the pink icon, I am wrong?

Not a bug, unfortunately, @simple45. How links are displayed is dictated by the PDF spec.

Sorry about that, my friend.

I have to understand what I am expecting from the export, before concluding if it is a pdf issue or not.

So :

  1. On the pdf export, how objects with links, are supposed to be displayed?

  2. Let’s say that I have the last version of Balsamiq. Can you provide 2 exports examples with links, one for each pdf export option I mentionned above?

The display of the link hints depends on the PDF export type (as you discovered).

For instance, if you choose Optimize for viewing on screen the link hints will look like this:

However, if you choose to shrink your PDFs to a printed page (which could also be called Optimize for printing), they will look like this.

As I understand it, the reason for this is because, if you are shrinking to fit on a page, it is assumed that you’re going to be printing the PDF (which is weird because links won’t work on printed pages…but I digress). Printers would struggle putting the big pink link hint over other text, so they decided to use the little arrow.

You should find this on any standards-compliant PDF. That’s why we haven’t changed it.

Does that make sense?

Thanks Brendan. I am not going to print the pdf.

As I explained in the top of the topic, I just want to have somethiong “clear” for an end user.
The gray arrows are ok if they are showing up once on an objet, try to put a link on a rectangle and you will see the result…

The background pink color on the object is more confusing because the color will be mixed with the application colors.

Question :
I the pdf, I can not just have the pink link arrow exactly same as in the presentation mode?

You could use the External Link icon. You can color it salmon like the link hints on the canvas.

It would look something like this:

Screen Shot 2020-07-08 at 5.10.02 PM

Would that work for you?

Hello Brendan.
How an External Link can resolve what I am explaining?

Example : As any other mobile application, the user should click on a line result (anywhere on the line). I draw this line as a rectangle.
On this rectangle, I am having like 15 gray arrows / or having all the line red (because this rectangle is a link).

That’s strange. Can you send me a screenshot (or email me the project), @simple45?

When I share PDFs, I usually hide the built-in link display and place a pink mouse pointer icon on top of the point where I want the reader to click, then link the icon to whatever page comes next.

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Thanks rshadian.

If I do that, this pink mouse pointer will display everywhere when I am in a presentation mode.

Hi @simple45,

You could work around that issue by treating the pointer icons as markup and then toggling markup off/on in Presentation Mode by pressing M.

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Thanks Alasdair,

I am using the markup as “some kind of documentation” andthey are very important in a presentation mode, can not hide them.
For me, markup should stay as markup, they have nothing to do with the export links…

Hi @simple45, I understand. If you want to use Markup controls and just leave them toggled on at all times, you can certainly do that.

Thanks Alasdair, but my issue is still not resolved :slight_smile:

HI @simple45 I’m not sure there is a solution which meets your requirements 100% which is why we’re discussing possible workarounds.