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MathGroup Archive 1999

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Re: Dialog for selecting a file to be read-- A solution (16K)

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg18082] Re: Dialog for selecting a file to be read-- A solution (16K)
  • From: jns1 <jns1 at madmax.hrl.HAC.COM>
  • Date: Tue, 15 Jun 1999 01:43:37 -0400
  • Delivery-date: Tue Jun 15 05:46:11 1999
  • Organization: LRH
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at wolfram.com

There was a thread a month or so ago about how to select files
graphically from a directory for plotting or whatever. If only a single
file is needed, the Input/Get File Path... menu selection was suggested.
I needed a method for selecting multiple files from a given
subdirectory, so I learned about buttons and notebook manipulation,
etc., over the last few days for this purpose. I must say it was not
easy. The examples in the Big Book mostly pertained to applying
expression manipulation to notebook cells.

Anyway, I did manage to come up with something that works. I have
already mucked it up to the point of incomprehensibility for my
particular application, but I have also make a simplified version that
demonstrates the basic idea for a simple case for those interested. It
is only 16K, so here is the notebook below. 

I used Mathematica 4 due to the new features of the Partition function.
I am sure there are other ways to do the same thing.

============================dialogSimple.nb======================================

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Notebook[{

Cell[CellGroupData[{
Cell["Simple File Dialog", "Subtitle"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \(\(\(\(Off[General::"\<spell1\>"]\) \)\(;\)\(\(Off[
        General::"\<spell\>"]\) \)\(;\)\(\ \)\( (*\ 
      Eliminates\ spelling\ error\ warnings\ *) \)\)\)], "Input",
  FontWeight->"Plain"],

Cell[TextData[{
  "This is a simple way to select one or more files from a given \
subdirectory. I use it for ",
  StyleBox["MultipleListPlot ",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  "'ing data from selected files. The files are displayed in a palette,
one \
file per button. Click on a button to choose the file, which then
appends it \
to a ",
  StyleBox["List",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ". This does not allow you to move up and down the directory tree, so
that \
remains to be done. You can either type in the subdirectory or
subdirectories \
where your data resides explicitly, or you can use \"Get File Path...\"
from \
the \"Input\" menu to choose a typical file to identify the
subdirectory. I \
will do the latter here."
}], "Text"],

Cell[TextData[{
  StyleBox["Mathematica",
    FontSlant->"Italic"],
  " version 4 is required due to the use of the new extensions to the ",
  StyleBox["Partition",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " function below."
}], "Text"],

Cell[TextData[{
  "First, a typical (but not necessarily desired) file is chosen using \
Input/Get File Path.... in the next line. This is just a convenient way
to \
specify the subdirectory of interest. It is easier to demonstrate all
this \
using a specific case. Really, you should make everything a function, \
probably of ",
  StyleBox["typicalFile ",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  "or",
  StyleBox[" dirName",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ", the subdirectory itself.",
  " Then you can invoke this using different ",
  StyleBox["typicalFile",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  "'s",
  " or ",
  StyleBox["dirName",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  "'s as desired for different subdirectories."
}], "Text"],

Cell[CellGroupData[{

Cell[BoxData[
    \(typicalFile = "\<Macintosh HD:Mathematica \
Documents:RITData:SB1091:RB109115.IVM\>"\)], "Input"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \("Macintosh HD:Mathematica
Documents:RITData:SB1091:RB109115.IVM"\)], \
"Output"]
}, Open  ]],

Cell["This gets the directory tree of the typical file. ", "Text"],

Cell[CellGroupData[{

Cell[BoxData[
    \(dirName = DirectoryName[typicalFile]\)], "Input"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \("Macintosh HD:Mathematica Documents:RITData:SB1091:"\)], "Output"]
}, Open  ]],

Cell[TextData[{
  "All the files names in the same subdirectory as ",
  StyleBox["typicalFile",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ", with full directory path included."
}], "Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \(\(fNames = FileNames["\<*\>", dirName];\)\)], "Input"],

Cell["List of the file names without the directory path:", "Text"],

Cell[CellGroupData[{

Cell[BoxData[
    \(shortNames = StringReplace[fNames, dirName \[Rule] "\<\>"]\)],
"Input"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \({"RB109110.IVM", "RB109111.IVM", "RB109112.IVM", "RB109113.IVM", 
      "RB109114.IVM", "RB109115.IVM", "RB109116.IVM", "RB109117.IVM", 
      "RB109118.IVM", "RB109119.IVM", "RB109120.IVM", "RB109121.IVM", 
      "RB109122.IVM", "RB109123.IVM", "RB109124.IVM", "RB109125.IVM", 
      "RB109126.IVM", "RB109127.IVM", "SB109110.IVM", "SB109111.IVM", 
      "SB109112.IVM", "SB109113.IVM", "SB109114.IVM", "SB109115.IVM", 
      "SB109116.IVM", "SB109117.IVM", "SB109118.IVM", "SB109119.IVM", 
      "SB109120.IVM", "SB109121.IVM", "SB109122.IVM", "SB109123.IVM", 
      "SB109124.IVM", "SB109125.IVM", "SB109126.IVM", "SB109127.IVM", 
      "SB109128.IVM", "SB109129.IVM", "SB109130.IVM", "SB109131.IVM", 
      "SB109132.IVM", "SB109133.IVM", "SB109134.IVM", "SB109135.IVM", 
      "SB109136.IVM", "SB109137.IVM", "SB109138.IVM", "SB109139.IVM", 
      "SB109140.IVM", "SB109141.IVM"}\)], "Output"]
}, Open  ]],

Cell[TextData[{
  StyleBox["doButton",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " makes a palette button for a file name using ",
  StyleBox["ButtonBox",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ". I didn't know anything about this stuff before writing this either.
It \
is not very well described in the Big Book. The examples their are not
too \
relevant for this purpose. But I managed to figure it out. \nThere will
be \
one button per file in the eventual palette. ",
  StyleBox["f",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " in the next line will represent each file entry in the array ",
  StyleBox["shortNames",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ". ",
  StyleBox["ButtonEvaluator->\"Local\"",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " means the Kernel evaluates this, not the mini-kernel built into the
front \
end. Clicking a button will ",
  StyleBox["Append",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " a file name to the list ",
  StyleBox["flist",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ", so that's what the ",
  StyleBox["ButtonFunction",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " does in this case. ",
  StyleBox["ButtonData",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " means use the string ",
  StyleBox["f",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " for the preceding #1 argument."
}], "Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    RowBox[{\(doButton[f_String]\), ":=", 
      RowBox[{"ButtonBox", 
        StyleBox["[",
          FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], 
        RowBox[{"f", ",", \(ButtonEvaluator \[Rule] "\<Local\>"\), ",", 
          RowBox[{"ButtonFunction", "\[RuleDelayed]", 
            RowBox[{
              StyleBox["(",
                FontColor->RGBColor[1, 0, 0]], 
              RowBox[{
                RowBox[{
                  StyleBox["{",
                    FontColor->RGBColor[0, 1, 0]], \(fList = \ 
                    Append[fList, #1]\), 
                  StyleBox["}",
                    FontColor->RGBColor[0, 1, 0]]}], "&"}], 
              StyleBox[")",
                FontColor->RGBColor[1, 0, 0]]}]}], 
          ",", \(ButtonData \[Rule] f\)}], 
        StyleBox["]",
          FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]]}]}]], "Input"],

Cell[TextData[{
  "Additional \"Done\" button to click when there are no more files. ",
  StyleBox["Union",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " eliminates accidental duplicates and orders the files. The full
directory \
path is restored to the file name by ",
  StyleBox["fullL",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  "."
}], "Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \(fullL[f_] := dirName <> f\)], "Input"],

Cell[BoxData[
    RowBox[{
      RowBox[{"doneButton", "=", "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
        RowBox[{"ButtonBox", "[", 
          RowBox[{
          "\"\<Done\>\"", ",", \(ButtonEvaluator \[Rule] "\<Local\>"\), 
            ",", \(Background \[Rule] RGBColor[ .8,  .4,  .4]\), ",", 
            "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
            RowBox[{"ButtonFunction", "\[RuleDelayed]", 
              RowBox[{
                StyleBox["(",
                  FontColor->RGBColor[1, 0, 0]], 
                RowBox[{
                  RowBox[{
                    StyleBox["{",
                      FontColor->RGBColor[0, 1, 0]], \(fList = 
                      fullL /@ Union[fList]\), 
                    StyleBox["}",
                      FontColor->RGBColor[0, 1, 0]]}], "&"}], 
                StyleBox[")",
                  FontColor->RGBColor[1, 0, 0]]}]}]}], "]"}]}], 
      ";"}]], "Input"],

Cell[TextData[{
  "This creates an ",
  StyleBox["Array",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " which mimics the form of the eventual palette. Read the following
from \
bottom up. It takes the shortNames list and partitions it into an array
with \
rows of 5 in length, which makes a nice palette. Then it maps ",
  StyleBox["doButton",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " on to the array elements to make a ",
  StyleBox["ButtonBox",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " for each file name. Then, the ",
  StyleBox["doneButton",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " is appended. \nThe strange form of the Partition function is needed
if \
the number of files is not a multiple of 5, to avoid losing any at the
end."
}], "Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    RowBox[{
      RowBox[{"bFiles", "=", "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
        RowBox[{
          RowBox[{
            RowBox[{
              RowBox[{
                RowBox[{
                  RowBox[{\(Append[#, {doneButton}]\), 
                    StyleBox["&",
                      FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]]}], 
                  StyleBox[" ",
                    FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], 
                  StyleBox["@",
                    FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], 
                  "\[IndentingNewLine]", \(Map[doButton, #, {2}]\)}], 
                StyleBox["&",
                  FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]]}], 
              StyleBox[" ",
                FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], 
              StyleBox["@",
                FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
              " ", \(Partition[#, 5, 5, {1, 1}, {}]\)}], 
            StyleBox["&",
              FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]]}], 
          StyleBox[" ",
            FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], 
          StyleBox["@",
            FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], "\[IndentingNewLine]", " ", 
          "shortNames"}]}], ";"}]], "Input"],

Cell["\<\
The palette of buttons will be a cell in a separate, automatically \
created notebook. The following is the cell. I don't really understand
this \
GridBox and BoxData stuff; I just copied an example in the Big Book.\
\>", \
"Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    RowBox[{
      RowBox[{"dirCell", "=", 
        RowBox[{"{", "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
          RowBox[{"Cell", 
            StyleBox["[",
              FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]], "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
            RowBox[{
              RowBox[{"BoxData", 
                StyleBox["[",
                  FontColor->RGBColor[1, 0, 
                  0]], \(GridBox[\[IndentingNewLine]bFiles, 
                  ColumnSpacings \[Rule] 0, RowSpacings \[Rule] 0]\), 
                StyleBox["]",
                  FontColor->RGBColor[1, 0, 0]]}], ",", 
              "\[IndentingNewLine]", "\"\<Input\>\"", 
              ",", \(Active \[Rule] True\)}], 
            StyleBox["]",
              FontColor->RGBColor[0, 0, 1]]}], "}"}]}], ";"}]],
"Input"],

Cell["This is the notebook of buttons that will be created.", "Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    RowBox[{
      RowBox[{"buttonNB", "=", "\[IndentingNewLine]", 
        RowBox[{"Notebook", 
          StyleBox["[",
            FontColor->RGBColor[0, 1, 0]], \(dirCell, 
          WindowTitle \[Rule] "\<Data Files\>"\), 
          StyleBox["]",
            FontColor->RGBColor[0, 1, 0]]}]}], ";"}]], "Input"],

Cell[TextData[{
  "This initializes ",
  StyleBox["fList",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " and pops up the notebook of buttons. When you click ",
  StyleBox["Done",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  ", the file names you selected will be in the list ",
  StyleBox["fList",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " to do with as you wish."
}], "Text"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \(fList = {}; NotebookPut[buttonNB];\)], "Input"],

Cell["\<\
There might be a harmless error message output because of the \
different length of the rows of buttons.\
\>", "Text"],

Cell[TextData[{
  "I clicked on 3 file name buttons and then ",
  StyleBox["Done",
    FontWeight->"Bold"],
  " to produce the following."
}], "Text"],

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Cell[BoxData[
    \(fList\)], "Input"],

Cell[BoxData[
    \({"Macintosh HD:Mathematica Documents:RITData:SB1091:RB109127.IVM", 
      "Macintosh HD:Mathematica Documents:RITData:SB1091:SB109118.IVM", 
      "Macintosh HD:Mathematica
Documents:RITData:SB1091:SB109135.IVM"}\)], \
"Output"]
}, Open  ]]
}, Open  ]]
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