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RE: Odd Formatting Problem

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg35050] RE: [mg35033] Odd Formatting Problem
  • From: "DrBob" <majort at>
  • Date: Thu, 20 Jun 2002 23:54:53 -0400 (EDT)
  • Reply-to: <drbob at>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

I've had similar experiences, and it's DEFINITELY a bug as far as I'm

I will suggest that when you select an expression to copy it (or copy
over it), try selecting ONLY by multiple-clicking.  (Triple-click a
function name to select it with all its arguments, for instance.)  That
way, the front-end grabs a selection it likes.  That limits your
options, of course.

If you're about to do "surgery" on a complicated expression, copy it to
a new cell and save the notebook first.

When I want to add parentheses, I tend to select the expression I want
them to enclose, click the exponentiation template from the BasicInput
palette, and then delete the exponent if I don't need it.  That usually
puts parentheses around the expression.

I'm sure there are other similar tricks and better ways to perform
those, as well; I wish I knew them all.


-----Original Message-----
From: aes [mailto:siegman at] 
To: mathgroup at
Subject: [mg35050] [mg35033] Odd Formatting Problem

I have several expressions inside a Module that I've typed in the 
general form

labelTwoText = "OUTPUT:\n"
    <> "\nK2 = " <> ToString[K2]
    <> "\nG2 = " <> ToString[G2 // N]
    <> "\ntheta2 = " <> ToString[theta2/degrees // N]
    <> "\nthetaC = " <> ToString[thetaC/degrees // N]
    <> "\nk2 = " <> ToString[k2 // N];

where I've inserted the CRs at the end of each line deliberately 
for readability.

(The expression is intended to collect text to be inserted into 
graphics using Text[] and Show[].  The real-life examples are 
three or four times as long.)

Sometimes these work fine; sometimes for unknown reasons they get 
screwed up -- especially if I cut and paste the expression within 
the Module to move it or duplicate it.  When this happens:

1) I get the error message

      Syntax::sntxb: Expression cannot begin with "<>
      K2 = <>ToString[K2//N]".

2)  Some of the lines become indented by slightly different 
amounts before the "<>"'s.

3)  The program is now totally unstoppable:  Interrupt Evaluation 
or Abort Evaluation no longer stop the program, which will 
apparently Run forever.  Only way out is to Quit the front end, 
then Quit the kernal, and restart the app.

3)  Once you've reopened the notebook, laboriously doing a delete 
and then CR at the beginning of each line is the only way to 
restore functionality,

Obviously I'll stop typing them this way and let Mathematica make the
breaks -- but this does seem like some kind of bug?

(Mathematica on a Mac G3 PB running OS 8.6)

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