[pmwiki-users] proposed markup for rowspan in simple tables

John Rankin john.rankin at affinity.co.nz
Mon Aug 25 20:14:01 CDT 2008

On Tuesday, 26 August 2008 2:05 AM, pmwiki-users-request at pmichaud.com wrote:
>Date: Mon, 25 Aug 2008 07:32:53 -0500
>From: "Patrick R. Michaud" <pmichaud at pobox.com>
>On Mon, Aug 25, 2008 at 08:51:04PM +1200, john.rankin at affinity.co.nz wrote:
>> I see merit in, and would be happy with, any of the following.
>> On the whole, I prefer A, then B, then C, but it is not a strong
>> preference:
>> A
>> ||text ||span rows |_|_|_||
>> B
>> ||text ||span rows |=|=|=||
>> C
>> ||text ||span rows |^|^|^||
>None of these cause me any grief, but neither do any of them
>feel like they're what I'd want to adopt in the core.  There's
>also the possibility of ...
>  ||text ||span rows +++||

I would be happy with this, but others may not. Strictly, as the
recipe is written, to get left aligned text, one would write:

||text ||span rows+++ ||
||text ||
||text ||

If this goes into the core, the space could go before or after;
either way has merit.

I prefer repeated single characters because they are easy to type.
>Subject: Re: [pmwiki-users] proposed markup for rowspan in simple
>	tables
>To: Christian Ridderstr?m <christian.ridderstrom at gmail.com>
>On Mon, Aug 25, 2008 at 10:44:46AM +0200, Christian Ridderstr?m wrote:
>> What about this:
>> ||cell text ||__spanning text ||
>> ||text      ||__more spanning text ||
>> ||more      ||__last row of spanning text ||
>> ||aaa       ||bbb ||
>> Here you don't specify the number of rows explicitly, but instead place  
>> '__' on each row that's to be included. To me, the advantage is more 
>> space for the spanning text.
>I like this as well, but it has the distinct drawback that the
>markup engine would have to "look ahead" to determine the number
>of rows to be spanned and to find the complete text of the
>current cell, and then remember not to re-render that text
>in subsequent rows.  Doing that might be a bit tricky.

Slightly OT. In PublishPDF we have the opposite problem. With a markup
like ||spanning+++ || I have to insert empty cells in the 2 subsequent
rows, because LaTeX requires a column placeholder when rows are spanned,
unlike HTML. It was easier to do this in the wiki -> XML than in the
transformation of XML -> LaTeX.
>> (:simpletable separator=";" alignment="llc" :)
>> Column A ; Column B  ; Column C
>> asfasdf  ; asdfasdf  ; asdfas
>> afasdff  ;
>> (:simpletableend:)
>I like this approach a lot -- I'll have to think about it.
>It might even be do-able within the existing table markup, as
>something like:
>|| separator=";" alignment="llc"
>|| Column A ; Column B ; Column C
>|| apple    ; banana   ; cherry
>|| ask      ;
>Or, perhaps combine separators and alignments in a single format string,
>allowing the separator to change:
>|| format="l ; l - c"
>|| Column A ; Column B - Column C
>|| apple    ; banana   - cherry
>|| ask      ;          -
Doing it within existing markup is preferable. In this case, I think a
more verbose markup is desirable, for clarity when editing. 

>> Perhaps it might even be possible to use multiple spaces as column  
>> separator, thus allowing:
>> (:simpletable separator="  " alignment="lcr" :)
>> Column A    Column B     Column C
>... how would one specify an "empty" cell?

A backtickspace = &nbsp; if you are using the PublishPDF extensions.

John Rankin

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