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Re: [TUHS] A few observations regarding tbl

From: Oliver Corff
Subject: Re: [TUHS] A few observations regarding tbl
Date: Thu, 17 Jun 2021 15:34:38 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/78.10.1

Hi Doug,

your reply proves that if is worth paying attention to *every* detail.

Anyway, once I had recognized that trailing spaces alter the
interpretation of a '_' in first and (not any longer) only position of
an input line, I paid attention to checking all instances. Usually they
spaces were generated by a block fill when I had yanked and inserted
blocks of columns with the Ctrl-V feature of vim.

Best regards,


On 17/06/2021 14:02, Douglas McIlroy wrote:
I disagree with one point in this interesting and thoughtful post.

  2) The global option "nospaces", according to the manpage, is described
      Ignore leading and trailing spaces in data items (GNU tbl only).

  The following point may be a question of correct interpretation of this
  statement. Does the underbar "_" qualify as a data item in this
  terminology? I positively think so, because the manpage states

      If  a  data  line  consists of only ‘_’ or ‘=’, a single or double
  line, respectively, is drawn across the table at that point;
The post goes on to suggest that under option "nospaces" a data line
consisting of an underbar followed by a space should be interpreted
as if it had been a bare underbar, signifying a line across the whole

I agree that an underbar followed by a space qualifies as a data item.
However, the man page clearly distinguishes between "data item" and
"data line". Ignoring spaces in a data item does not destroy its
itemhood. It does not magically become a data line.


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