[pmwiki-users] Tabular thought -- simplify conversion between markup styles of tables

Christian Ridderström christian.ridderstrom at gmail.com
Mon Aug 25 16:54:58 CDT 2008


I just had a separate thought, and to keep things simpler I decided to 
post it separately. First the core assumption:

 	Different types of tables prefer different markup styles.

Then the idea:

 	Make it easier to switch between markup styles.

Going back to the beginning. We have quite a few different use cases for 
tables or types of markup.

* I: Very simple table. Today I might do it like this:
 	Column A    Column B
 	bla         bla
** Subcategory A: I'm pasting the table from some other source,
    and I don't care if a ROE pattern or similar later turns this
    into some other kind of markup.
** Subcategory B: I really want to keep the tabular markup like
    this in the wiki markup, to make it really easy to edit.

* II: Normal table. Today I'd do it like this:
 	||!Column A    ||!Column B    ||
 	||bla		||bla	||
   We have intermediate control, but some more visual clutter in
   the markup.

* III: Advanced table markup, i.e.
   When you need to control details, or put larger portions of text
   inside a table cell.

* IV: Using a spreadsheet software to generate a HTML with the table
   and then use (:includurl ... :) to embed this in a wiki page.
   This is something I started using today and I find it rather
   convenient actually. I can recommend it, but I'd prefer better
   support in the spreadsheet software for exporting to HTML.
 	(:includeurl doc:myspreadsheet.html :)
   Ideally, the embedded <object> should be preceeded with a link
   to the spreadsheet itself so that you can edit it easily.
   Finally, if you upload an updated spreadsheet, it should
   automatically be converted to HTML. [*]

For some of the tables above (I-III), it should be possible to automate 
conversion between the markup styles. Note that the conversion will not be 
perfect, as style I can't support all that III allows and so forth, but I 
still think it would be very useful.

Best regards

[*] I'll post more thoughts on a general version of this separately.

Christian Ridderström, +46-8-768 39 44            http://www.md.kth.se/~chr

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