tables and DT

I have imported into DT several rtf files that contain tables – and of course, they look horrible when viewed in DT. Apple has announced rtf table support for Tiger – at least in Preview. If it is correct to assume that it is rtf support in general in Tiger that is being improved, will my DT notes containing tables appear properly as soon as I upgrade to Tiger?

Here’s the good news. Rich text under Tiger will better support tables. :slight_smile:

Here’s the bad news. That won’t do any good for your already imported rich text documents. :frowning:

With all the hype about the new features in Tiger (and the hype is justified!), two of the features that get relatively little publicity will be very important to me: tables in rich text, and PDFKit with Preview enhancements.

That’s not what Devon said: “According to our test here, yes, tables should look much better on Tiger without you importing them again into DEVONthink. We will release a Tiger-compliant version of DT in the next two weeks.” :slight_smile:

If that’s the case, I’m surprised and delighted. I was going on the assumption that tabular structures of previously imported documents were lost in conversion to rich text and could not be reconstructed. That’s been the case for some other interim improvements of rich text, such as URL links to text, e.g., “Science” as a link to the Science Magazine Web site. My older rich text imports were not able to reconstruct such links. New imports, of course, do capture the links.

The inability of Apple’s rich text to handle tables in text has been a constant irritation to me, as many of my sources of data do use tables (in which case I’ve often had to resort to capturing HTML source, or capturing as PDF). I’m looking forward to Tiger.

Bill, you were right, and the people with whom I corresponded at DEVONtechnologies were wrong :frowning:

I was told that already-imported rtf files containing tables would appear formatted correctly under Tiger, but I’ve found this not to be the case: I had to delete and then reimport the file.

But there is a much bigger problem: while the file now appears correctly (it is a rather simple table of four columns, but long, taking up 344KB), scrolling is excruciatingly slow: just attempting to drag the vertical scroll bar maxes out my CPU, and the text doesn’t move until at least 10 seconds have elapsed. I have a PowerBook G4/867 with 1 GB of RAM. OS X 10.4.1.

This isn’t a very big database, by the way.


I was looking forward to the table support in RTF too. My experience is mixed: Some tables (from HTML sites as well) look great, some are horrible, even in the same document.

I do not know why, and since it is an Apple feature, I would not complaint about DT but think of reporting that to Apple. I hope table support will be improved in future releases of Tiger.


The slow scrolling could be a DT problem.

Ah sorry, that is no problem in my case, neither on the slow iBook nore on the G5. I just forgot to mention that.


What I’m surprised about is that there isn’t a built-in way to automatically convert a set of delimited text into a table. I have lots of text formatted with tabs and, with a tweakable ruler, that’s great. However, if I export that note out as HTML, DT doesn’t make it into an HTML table (not too surprising, I suppose) or use embed it inside a

 container so that it might retain some semblance of the tabbing.

My theory was that a proper “table”, when exported as HTML might be converted to an HTML table and therefore look OK. I never found out if that’s true, however, because I got stuck at converting the tab-delimited (or whatever) text table into a DT table. There wasn’t any way to automatically do it, not as an entire table, not as an entire row, etc. Every single cell would have to be copied/pasted by hand. Yuck! That’s not too convenient!

I really wanted something similar to the “Convert to table” functionality part of BBEdit’s HTML tools. It asks you what the delimiter is, whether the first row is the header, etc, and makes you a table. Poof! I suppose I could write an AppleScript to do it… in my copious spare time. :stuck_out_tongue: