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Conveniently Restarting Notebooks

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg51114] Conveniently Restarting Notebooks
  • From: "David Park" <djmp at>
  • Date: Tue, 5 Oct 2004 04:36:58 -0400 (EDT)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

I'm restarting this as a new thread.

I wonder if you use Sections to organize your notebooks. Although the
ability to evaluate all cells down to a given selected cell might be useful,
I think that taking advantage of existing notebook features will work as
well and even better.

I personally find the following method convenient. I organize my notebooks
by Sections. At the top of the notebook I have an Initialization Section
that loads all necessary packages and does other routine initialization.
Then I have a Routines Section where I place any general definitions and
routines I develop along the way. I make both the Initialization and
Routines Sections initialization cells. (When you first save such a notebook
say NO to Create AutoSavePackage.)

With that organization one can usually go to any subsequent Section and
start evaluating. The initializations will automatically be performed.
Suppose you have a long Section you have been working on but it is
incomplete. When you restart the notebook all you have to do is select that
Section and evaluate. All initializations will be performed and all existing
cells in that Section will be evaluated and then you can continue with your

Sometimes, but hopefully rarely, some Section might depend upon previous
noninitialization Sections. Then just select the previous Sections along
with the Section you are working on and evaluate.

This does leave out the case where you might want to evaluate all cells in a
Section down to a given cell. But if the Sections are not too long it's not
that difficult to select the cells you want, or to just evaluate all cells
in the Section but start reworking at an intermediate point.

Also, if you use Sectional Grouping I recommend that you always stay with
the default Automatic Grouping. I have never seen a Manual Grouping notebook
that was convenient to work with.

David Park
djmp at

From: AES/newspost [mailto:siegman at]
To: mathgroup at

Could also provide a way to select and evaluate all cells from
current working point to top of a notebook (my personal hobby horse)

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