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Using Tables to Manage Page Layout

Tables allow for summarization of information, to simplify display and modification of data using a consistent table format. In addition, with tables you can align text and graphics in rows and columns and position elements on pages or forms. To create a new table, select Create, Table from the pull-down menu. Then select the number of rows and columns, the table width, and table type.

The types of tables that can be created are displayed in Table 3.6.

Table 3.6 Table Types

Table Type



Displays a basic table displaying the number of rows and columns specified.


Allows for separate types of information on separate tabs. Each tab corresponds to a row in a typical tab layout. This feature is available to both Notes clients and Web clients.


Cycles separate lines of text and/or graphics to display in sequence, using the timing interval and transition effect specified. Each line of text can display a different format. This feature is not supported on the Web.


Displays each row as a clickable caption.


Displays a different row based upon a field value located within the form named after the table. For example, if the name of the table is TableProfile, then the name of the field would be $TableProfile. This feature is available to both Notes clients and Web clients. When being used on the Web, the $TableProfile field property must be set to Refresh Choices on Keyword Change. The database property to Use JavaScript when Generating Pages must also be selected.

Modifying Table Properties

After it is created, you can further modify the table properties by selecting Table, Table Properties from the pull-down menu.

A table can have a combination of fixed-size and auto-sized columns. (Auto-sized columns adjust to the width specified by the fixed-width columns.) The space between row and column borders can be increased and decreased from the Table Layout tab of the table properties. Any changes made to the row and column spacing applies to all the rows and columns in a table. The minimum height field also applies to an entire table.

Tables can also be recursive (or nested)—that is, a table can be nested within an existing table. The nesting limit is eight tables deep. This feature is available to both Notes clients and Web clients.

After a table has been added to the page or form, the Table Properties box allows for considerably more customization than in previous versions on Notes. Some of the features available with tables include the following:

  • You can auto-size a column based on the content of the column.

  • Tabs can be positioned on all sides of the table (top, bottom, right, or left).

  • You can set equal sizes for each of the tabs.

  • Tables with collapsible sections can use row captions (which look like the Maximize and Minimize buttons for Windows) by selecting the Users Pick Row via Caption option in the Table properties box.


Text can be set to wrap across cells horizontally—that is, after the vertical size of the cell is filled, the text begins filling the cell located horizontally next to the original cell. To wrap text across cells, open the Table Margins properties box. In the Table Wrap section, select Inside Table Wrap Text Between Cells. Then adjust the At Height field to specify how much the cell should be filled in before the text wraps to the next cell. After the cells are filled, the remaining text is collected in the last cell.

Modifying Tables for Use in Both Notes and Web Clients

Tables are a very useful feature when you are developing applications, and their functionality has been dramatically improved. Tables can include fields, graphics, subforms, hot spots, objects, sections, file attachments, Java applets, embedded design elements, and nested tables.

When you are using tables on the Web, cells that contain no information are suppressed (hidden) when they are displayed to Web clients. To avoid this, you can insert blank, transparent GIFs into the empty table cells so that they are not suppressed. A more efficient way to prevent table suppression is to place a blank space within the table cell (using   as HTML).

The following list includes some other considerations to keep in mind when you have tables intended for both Web and Notes clients:

  • For Notes clients, you can specify border attributes for each cell. For Web clients, all the table cells are either visible or hidden. The attributes of the top left cell determine the border attributes for the entire table.

  • Gradient cell background colors are not supported on the Web.

  • Table drop shadows are not supported on the Web.

  • Margin settings are not supported on the Web.

  • Some collapsible features are not supported on the Web, such as animated tables using the Switch Row Every _ Millisecond feature.

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