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Subject: Re: [office] A small step on "Empty Cell" (OFFICE-3768)

I fully agree with you on all your comments. Let us continue the discussion from here.

Regina and I discussed offlist the empty cell topic coming to the following insights:
  1. I agree now with Regina's idea toÂmake "void" the default value of @office:value-type making the "empty" the default cell state.Â
    Therefore we should remove: "The value type of each of these elements shall be specified.
    Being the first sentence of the third paragraph ofÂ
    As the "shall" indicates the mandatory existence of office:value-type, which is not the case in our XML schema:
  2. If a cell should not have the type "void" there has to be a type attribute.
    The value of the cell is defined by its value attribute or in case of type string and the absence of the value attribute by the "text content" of a cell.
  3. The "text content" should be implicitly defined by defining it once for all XML elements not explicitly for <table:table-cell>.
    We might want to rename chapter 6 "Paragraph Elements Content" to "Text Content".
    Paragraph Elements here are <text:p>ÂandÂ<text:h>.
    The "text content" of a cell is in basically the concatenated "text value" of all traversed <text:p> or <text:h> foundÂas descendants (detailed proposal later).
Best regards,

Am Fr., 26. Juni 2020 um 18:18ÂUhr schrieb Andreas J Guelzow <andreas.guelzow@concordia.ab.ca>:


please see below

On 2020-06-26 10:06 a.m., Svante Schubert wrote:
Hello Andreas,

allow me to rephrase your answer before I ask questions to make sure I understand:
  1. You say theÂuser semantic perspective an "empty cell" should be equal to the function ISBLANK on the cell is returning TRUE.
  1. You say in case of theÂcell state being an empty cell (ISBLANK=True), the ODF XML element of a table should have no child element descendants
No, I am not saying that. The XML has to be able to uniquely reflect the fact that the cell is empty, but it does not matter whether the table:table-cell element is empty or not.
If this is the case:
  1. Do you desire to 'move' shapes and annotations out of the table cell, or shall for cells with shapes or annotation the type 'void' be used?ÂÂ
  2. If the cell is empty (ISBLANK=True) should the XML be an empty XML element <table:table-cell/>?
    DoesÂit allowÂXML attributes, such as styles (e.g. background colour)?Â

During one of our last TC calls, you mentioned "multi-pass" of Gnumeric when loading ODS.
As far I understood, you desired images & annotations to be moved outside the XML of a cell.
Could you explain thisÂto me inÂmoreÂdetail?

I do not suggest to move images & annotations outside the XML of a cell. It seems that you and other members of the TC are thinking of the xml stream as the document. I consider the document and the xml stream to be distinct (but of course related) objects. The xml stream describes the object. When we read the xml stream, we create a document (which once it is created is independent from teh XML). When we write the document we create a new xml stream.



Andreas J. Guelzow, PhD FTICA

Registrar & Director of Enrolment Services

Professor, Mathematical & Computing Sciences

Direct: +1 780 479 9290
Toll-Free: +1 866 479 5200

Concordia University of


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