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From: TEC <tecosaur@gmail.com>
To: Tom Gillespie <tgbugs@gmail.com>
Cc: org-mode-email <emacs-orgmode@gnu.org>
Subject: Re: Tables: missing multi-col/row syntax
Date: Tue, 03 Nov 2020 03:46:54 +0800
Message-ID: <87iman5xoa.fsf@gmail.com> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <CA+G3_PMP+mm6oq+BMqC++LYGJCZhgV7bUwvybhQc54_hXk--OA@mail.gmail.com>


Tom Gillespie <tgbugs@gmail.com> writes:

> Any support for something like this would need to retain 
> backward
> compatibility as well to avoid older versions reformatting the 
> tables
> due to e.g. the presence of a double pipe. I also think that 
> extending
> the table syntax in ways that makes it more complex than it 
> already
> is, will be a non-starter.

I am also concerned with avoiding disrupting previous table. I 
think
that non-space double+ pipes should be alright (hence their part 
in my
suggestion) as it still maintains that the number of columns is 
equal to
the number of pipes. E.g. currently
|| a    | b | = 3 columns, and is reformatted to |  | a | b |
proposal
|| a    | b | = 2 cells, 2+1=3 columns (same)

> Thus, an alternate but more likely approach
> would be to allow specification of what cells to merge outside 
> the
> table as is done for formulas. It is not elegant, but it would 
> be a
> layer on top of existing syntax, and it would allow the 
> fundamental
> structure of the table to remain the same -- rows of cells. For
> example #+TBLCELLMERGE: @2-3$1 or something like that. Thoughts?
> Tom

I like how this seems to address the issue while keeping backwards
compatibility, but I have two big concerns:
 1. I think this could make it hard to see which cells are 
 'masked' by a
 merge at a glance, and would make associated errors easy
 2. I think that for say a table with 2-3 large sub-sections this 
 could
 lead to problematic formating.

Regarding 2, E.g. (content and form made up on the spot)

| Powerpoint | Voltage ripple while drawing 2A continuous load 
  over Xs |    |     |     |     | Current ripple while drawing 
  24V continuous load over Xs |    |    |     |    |     |
|            | 
1s | 5s | 10s | 20s | 30s | 
1s | 2s | 5s | 10s | 20 | 30s |
|------------+---------------------------------------------------------+----+-----+-----+-----+----------------------------------------------------------+----+----+-----+----+-----|
| Kitchen    | 
  3% | 2% |  3% |  1% |  2% | 
  1% | 4% | 3% |  5% | 3% |  2% |
| Bedroom    | 
  1% | 2% |  1% |  2% |  1% | 
  2% | 1% | 1% |  1% | 2% |  1% |
#+TBLCELLMERGE: @2-6$1,@7-11$1

vs.

| Powerpoint ||||| Voltage ripple while drawing 2A continuous load 
  over Xs |||||| Current ripple while drawing 24V continuous load 
  over Xs |
|            | 1s | 5s | 10s | 20s | 30s 
               | 1s | 2s | 5s | 10s | 20 | 30s 
               |
|------------+----+----+-----+-----+---------------------------------------+----+----+----+-----+----+-------------------------------------|
| Kitchen    | 3% | 2% |  3% |  1% |  2% 
  | 1% | 4% | 3% |  5% | 3% |  2% 
  |
| Bedroom    | 1% | 2% |  1% |  2% |  1% 
  | 2% | 1% | 1% |  1% | 2% |  1% 
  |

(NB: clearer without line wrapping, more concise examples 
definitely
available if I thought about it a tad more)

> On Mon, Nov 2, 2020 at 1:37 PM TEC <tecosaur@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> Hi all,
>>
>> This is a pretty major 'feature request', but I think also an
>> important
>> one.
>>
>> When developing large tables, it can often be /necessary/ to 
>> start
>> using
>> multi-column/row cells for clarity, and sensible exporting
>> results.
>>
>> As far as I am aware, in Org does not currently have any
>> multi-col/row
>> syntax. The only viable method seems to be re-implementing the
>> table
>> using export blocks in every backend you may want to export to 
>> (in
>> my
>> case, usually TeX + HTML). This is clumsy, difficult to work 
>> with,
>> and
>> could be avoided should org gain support for multi-col/row 
>> syntax.
>>
>> I appreciate that this would constitute a major change both the
>> Org's
>> syntax and the codebase, but I believe such a change is 
>> warranted
>> by the
>> advantages it would provide.
>>
>> Both how this can be implemented while minimising/eliminating 
>> the
>> chance
>> of breaking well-formed current table elements, and what syntax
>> may be
>> both acceptable and seem sensible to use.
>>
>> I would anticipate such a feature working by designating two
>> characters
>> to indicate "add row" and "add column". For example "|" and 
>> "-".
>> These
>> characters would take affect when /immediately following/ (no
>> space) a
>> cell separator ("|"), and designate the dimensions of the top
>> right cell.
>>
>> Example:
>> | a | b | c |
>> |---+---+---|
>> | a | - | | |
>> | - | b | . |
>> | . | | | c |
>>
>> Would be interpreted just as any current table is.
>>
>> However,
>>
>> | hello | there | you  |
>> |-------+-------+------|
>> || two column   | cell |
>>
>> Contains a 2x1 cell.
>>
>> | a little | test |
>> |----------+------|
>> |- hello   | hi   |
>> | two row  | you  |
>>
>> Contains a 1x2 cell. In a more complex example:
>>
>> | a | b | c |
>> |---+---+---|
>> ||-- hi | a |
>> | two x | . |
>> | three | b |
>> | c | - | . |
>>
>> Contains a 2x3 cell.
>>
>> This is just the first syntax that comes to mind, but hopefully
>> the
>> general form of this idea seems viable.
>>
>> All the best,
>>
>> Timothy.
>>



  reply	other threads:[~2020-11-02 20:09 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 8+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2020-11-02 18:14 TEC
2020-11-02 19:45 ` Tom Gillespie
2020-11-02 19:46   ` TEC [this message]
2020-11-04  9:23   ` Christian Moe
2020-11-04  9:28     ` TEC
2020-11-03 10:08 ` David Rogers
2020-11-03 10:35   ` TEC
2020-11-04  2:45     ` David Rogers

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