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Re: [Orgmode] Re: Feature request: HTML table formatting

From: Daniel J. Sinder
Subject: Re: [Orgmode] Re: Feature request: HTML table formatting
Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2007 11:48:58 -0700
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20070221)

Matej Cepl wrote:
> To the presentation of tables I would strongly suggest reading
> http://tug.ctan.org/tex-archive/macros/latex/contrib/booktabs/booktabs.pdf
> -- whenever I broke rules set there, I regreted it later.

For publication quality tables, as per the above reference, I would
generally agree that vertical lines have no place.  However, if
you're using org-mode to produce publication quality tables, I'd
argue that you're probably using the wrong tool.  LaTeX (and all the
emacs support for it) is probably the way to go from the start.

In some respects, org-mode tables are more powerful than LaTeX
tables as they can be used as spreadsheets.  I use org mode on a
near-daily basis to collect information about my work and share it
with my colleagues for analysis.  The information is sometimes raw
data that will never (and should never) be consumed for casual
reading.  In some of these cases, I find that vertical separators
can increase readability and/or delineate different test conditions
or data sets.

I think rejecting vertical rules as a matter of style is a mistake.
 Whether you consider org-mode tables to be a markup or a
spreadsheet, it's peers -- HTML, LaTeX, Gnumeric, Excel, etc. --
will all produce tables with vertical rules if asked to do so.  I'm
wary of tools that enforce style.  I'd prefer to read the style
guide and then decide for myself (that is, use it as a *guide* not
an edict).

However, if vertical rules are too clunky, difficult,
time-consuming, or low priority to implement, that's an entirely
different matter that I can fully understand.  If I come up with an
implementation, I'll gladly contribute it back for those that want it.


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