• Reference Guide

Alignment of Dispels

Your presentation will look nice and neat after you align its dispels. In a simple case, the dispels are aligned directly by a group or sequence editor. Elements are thus aligned to one of the margins or centered, or they all have the same dimensions. However, this technique can be used only for dispels that have the same direct parent dispel. Often, you will need to align dispels scattered under different parent dispels. An elementary example is a group of line editors that have one parent label each. Typically, you want the editors next to the labels to be left-aligned to the same position and possibly also to have the same width.
In order to align a general group of dispels, you will first need to select a shape controller dispel, which may be any group or sequence editor. All dispels that have to be aligned must be subordinated (indirectly) to the selected control dispel. In the Alignment section of the shape controller definition, you have to specify groups of dispels and assign certain alignment attributes to these groups (same width, same position, etc.). The group is identified by one ore more tags. Individual dispels that you wish to align must have this tag in their definition in the Control section (the Tag field) – see the common items. The tag determines the association between the dispel and the alignment group.
Please note that the alignment group is identified only by the parent shape controller. If a dispel has a tag, but is not subordinated to the shape controller dispel, it will not be aligned together with other dispels that have the same tag and are subordinated to the shape controller. Furthermore, the scopes of multiple shape controllers do not overlap: if two shape controllers are nested in one another, the alignment group is looked up only in the nearest parent. The shape controller is either a group or a sequence editor with a non-empty table of alignment groups in the Alignment section.

Definition of Alignment Groups

The following table lists the columns of the table contained in the Alignment section of a group and sequence editor definition. Every row of the table defines one alignment group.
List of tags assigned to dispels that belong to this alignment group.
Same position
Alignment of the position of group elements:
group elements are not aligned to the same position
horizontal position
group elements are aligned so that they are on the same position with respect to their immediately parent dispel. This alignment is appropriate if the parent dispels themselves are aligned to the same position, for example by being located in a single vertical group. (Such as editors that have labels above them located in a single group.) If this condition is not satisfied, it may be more appropriate to use the absolute horizontal position option.
vertical position
analogical to horizontal position, but applicable to vertical direction.
absolute horizontal position
elements are aligned so that their horizontal positions are the same with respect to the window. This option is more general and accurate than horizontal position, however, its realization is much less efficient in respect of computation time.
absolute vertical position
analogical to absolute horizontal position, but applicable to vertical direction.
When dispels in a group are to be aligned, an ideal width equal to the widest element of the group is first computed for the group. The Alignment setting determines the position of individual elements within this ideal space. This setting is useful especially when elements are aligned to the same horizontal position, however, it works even if they are not. The options are: left, center, and right.
Same width
If checked, all elements in the group have the same width as the widest one. Individual dispels may have restrictions imposed on their maximum width. Should it be exceeded, the highest possible width is set. This is the only situation when it makes sense to specify alignment together with the same width option.
Minimum width
This value determines the minimum width of group elements. However, the maximum width permitted for a particular dispel is not overridden by this setting. Should the width be exceeded for a particular element of the group, the maximum permitted width of this element is applied.
Maximum width
This value determines the maximum width of the group elements. Analogically to minimum width, the minimum width permitted for a particular dispel cannot be overridden.
Analogical to the Horizontal column, but applicable to vertical direction.
This button opens a window with a comfortable overview of all attributes of the alignment group.
Definition type: Sctl_def