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Re: OpenerView (with cells?)

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg88155] Re: OpenerView (with cells?)
  • From: "David Park" <djmpark at>
  • Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2008 03:45:50 -0400 (EDT)
  • References: <fus8d0$82k$>

Put a regular Sectional header in your notebook. Use Ctrl-Shift-E to open up 
the underlying expression. Then add to the cell the option


Then, as soon as you have another cell in the section the little triangle 
will show and you can use it to open and close the section.

These open/close icons are a very nice thing to have and I don't understand 
why they are not present on any of the standard style sheets. This may seem 
like a small thing but some people don't know about the double-clicking on 
the brackets, and other people just don't like it. I have a style sheet at 
my web site that does have these icons on all sectional groupings - but not 
on anything else. This is similar to the style sheet that comes with 

This brings up a related question. It would be nice to have some kind of 
'BoxSection' that could contain Text cells and Input/Output cells, but which 
other sections could 'flow around' just like boxes in textbooks or sidebars 
in magazine articles. Right now, if you try to use a subsection, close it 
up, and then enter a Text cell after it, the Text cell gets captured by the 
subsection. You can descend in the sectional hierarchy, but you can't get 
back up without actually starting a new higher level section. You can't 
'flow around'. It is probably not easy for WRI to implement this.

Right now for Presentations I've developed (but haven't included yet) 
something called Sidebars that solves this problem. The idea is to have 
Sidebar notebooks that are completely contained within a principal notebook 
but display as separate notebook windows. One first uses a MakeSidebar 
command to bring up a notebook window with a specified name. One can then 
add any desired information to the sidebar notebooks or change its style 
sheet just as with an ordinary notebook. But the sidebar notebook is not 
savable in the usual manner. Instead, in the principal notebook you can use 
a SaveSidebar command. This creates an initialization Input statement in the 
principal notebook that contains the sidebar notebook, but in skeleton form 
of display. The Sidebars are completely embedded in the principal notebook. 
Then there is a SidebarButton command that creates a distinctive button that 
will launch the Sidebar notebook. A reader can then bring up the Sidebars, 
read them, evaluate them and even do their own calculations in them, and 
then close them when finished. Sidebars are a very effective method to 
provide additional information without disrupting the flow of some argument, 
derivation or proof in a notebook.

David Park
djmpark at

"J. McKenzie Alexander" <jalex at> wrote in message 
news:fus8d0$82k$1 at
> In the Mathematica documentation viewer, it looks as though sections
> and subsection headers are implemented using an OpenerView that can
> contain cells. At least when you click on the disclosure triangle next
> to sections like "Examples", "More Information", "Options", and so on,
> the view reveals a number of input, output, and text cells.
> How are those section headers implemented?  An ordinary OpenerView, as
> far as I can tell, cannot contain cells (although you can fake it a
> little bit using DisplayForm).  I looked at the cell expression for
> one using Show Expression but what I found was just a reference to a
> stylesheet:
> Cell[TextData[{
>  "Basic Examples",
>  "  ",
>  Cell["(4)", "ExampleCount"]
> }], "ExampleSection",
>  CellID->454094506]
> Any ideas on how that effect is achieved? I'd like to use something
> similar in my own notebooks.
> Many thanks,
> Jason
> --
> Dr. J. McKenzie Alexander
> Department of Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
> London School of Economics and Political Science
> Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE

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