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Bilateral cell problem w/ Manipulate

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  • Subject: [mg88321] Bilateral cell problem w/ Manipulate
  • From: "J. McKenzie Alexander" <jalex at>
  • Date: Thu, 1 May 2008 06:27:51 -0400 (EDT)

Although AuthorTools is considered "legacy code" for Mathematica 6,  
I've still been using the bilateral cells palette because I don't know  
of any other better alternative.  Although it still works well, I've  
found that it sometimes breaks ? but sometimes not ? when using  
Manipulate, and I don't know why.  The following, for example, can be  
converted into a bilateral cell (assuming that the three cells are  
suitably inserted into a notebook):

(* This is the text on the left. *)
Cell["This is an example of Manipulate.", "MathCaption"]

(* Put this in an Input cell *)
    Table[Block[{r = Random[]}, If[r < t, 1 - r, 1]], {100}, {100}]
   ], {t, 0, 1}

(* Evaluate the above to get the Output cell. *)
(* ... *)

However, suppose that the object of the Manipulate isn't a simple  
graphic, but the output of a Plot like the following:

(* Put this in an Input cell. *)
  Plot[Sin[a x], {x, 0, 2 Pi}], {a, 0, 10}

If you try to convert that Manipulate into a bilateral cell, you get  
an error. On my machine (an Intel Mac), I just get a grey rectangle  
inside the Manipulate construct (in the bilateral cell).  If I  
position the mouse over the grey rectangle, I get the message: "This  
dynamic content could not be displayed because dynamic updating has  
been disabled in the Evaluation menu."   Except, dynamic updating  
hasn't actually been disabled in the evaluation menu ? other dynamic  
objects can still be manipulated in the notebook.

However, if you save the notebook containing the "broken" bilateral  
cell, restart Mathematica, and then load the notebook, the bilateral  
cell works!

Any suggestions as to what might be going wrong would be appreciated.  
I find the cell manipulations performed by MakeBilateralCell a bit  
mysterious, to say nothing of the magic that happens with Manipulate!


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