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NeoOffice :: View topic - 'text box' on spreadsheets
'text box' on spreadsheets
 
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Moongeek
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Joined: Oct 19, 2011
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 7:32 am    Post subject: 'text box' on spreadsheets Reply with quote

My question is rather basic. I am constructing workbooks that contain spreadsheets filled with lots of numbers (i.e., large arrays). I want to insert what Excel calls a 'text box' to explain what the numbers mean on each sheet. In Excel, the text box has a white opaque background upon which text is easily readable. In Calc, I can only insert a 'frame' that is transparent and through which the background grid lines appear. If I insert frames on a blank spreadsheet, I can turn off grid lines; but it applies to the whole sheet.

Alternatively, can I import a Writer document or can I hyperlink to a Writer document in the same directory as the workbook?
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pluby
The Architect
The Architect


Joined: Jun 16, 2003
Posts: 11932

PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To answer your first question, by default all frames in NeoOffice are transparent but you can change the background of a frames to white by doing the following steps:

1. Right-click or command-click on a frame and in the popup menu that appears, select the the Area menu

2. In the dialog that appears, select the Fill tab and change the drop down list from None to Color. Select the color White and press the OK button.

Does this change the background of a frame to white for you?

To answer your second question, yes you can link to a Writer file but using embedded Writer documents will be much slower to open and edit than frames. To insert a Writer document, use the following steps:

1. Select the Insert :: Object :: OLE Object menu.

2. In the dialog that appears, select "NeoOffice 3.2.1 Text" for the "Object type" and press the OK button.

Patrick
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Moongeek
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Joined: Oct 19, 2011
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the complete answer. I have just recently tried to implement your suggestions, and the playing field seems to have shifted. Originally, I was somehow able to insert a frame that was transparent and into which I could paste text.

Now, under the INSERT menu, I only see an option for a Floating Frame. When I invoke that, I get a dialog box that demands an external file. I had to create an odt file and paste my text into that rather than into a transparent window on the sheet. That works, but it means that I have to maintain a linked file to keep the text on the sheet.

How did I originally get the transparent frame on my sheet?

As a second question, the dialog box is called 'Floating Frame Properties'. It has a selection for 'Spacing to Contents'. I changed '0' in each box to '2' because I did not understand what the spacing was. Now, my linked odt file appears with a gray border around it that I do not want. I cannot get rid of it, even invoking the properties box. That box also has a permanently checked 'Default' that cannot be unchecked and that changes the width and grays out the height. (I can always delete the sheet and make a new link without change the zero values, but it seems dysfunctional.)
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pluby
The Architect
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Joined: Jun 16, 2003
Posts: 11932

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moongeek wrote:
Now, under the INSERT menu, I only see an option for a Floating Frame. When I invoke that, I get a dialog box that demands an external file. I had to create an odt file and paste my text into that rather than into a transparent window on the sheet. That works, but it means that I have to maintain a linked file to keep the text on the sheet.

How did I originally get the transparent frame on my sheet?


Unfortunately, there is no menu to insert a transparent frame and the Insert ::Floating Frame menu that you found only inserts an embedded file very similar to the Insert :: Object :: OLE Object menu.

To insert a transparent frame, select the View :: Toolbars :: Drawing menu. This should cause the Drawing toolbar to be displayed. In that toolbar, click on the "Text" toolbar button (the one with a big "T" character) and then click and drag the position to put your transparent frame.

Are you able to insert transparent frame using the above steps?

Moongeek wrote:
As a second question, the dialog box is called 'Floating Frame Properties'. It has a selection for 'Spacing to Contents'. I changed '0' in each box to '2' because I did not understand what the spacing was. Now, my linked odt file appears with a gray border around it that I do not want. I cannot get rid of it, even invoking the properties box. That box also has a permanently checked 'Default' that cannot be unchecked and that changes the width and grays out the height. (I can always delete the sheet and make a new link without change the zero values, but it seems dysfunctional.)


To get the Floating Frame Properties dialog to reappear for an existing Floating Frame, click on the very bottom edge of the floating frame so that small blue rectangles appear all around the entire floating frame. This may take a few tries as you need to click exactly on the outermost pixel of the floating frame so get these rectangles to appear.

Once you can see these rectangles, right-click or Control-click on one of them. In the popup menu that appears, you should see a Properties menu item at the bottom of the menu. Select that menu and you can turn off the border and/or adjustment the content spacing.

Are you able to remove the border using the above steps?

Patrick
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Moongeek
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Joined: Oct 19, 2011
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have created a transparent frame with the Drawing Menu Text Tool. I have changed the background to White with the contextual menu. I have pasted text onto the white background successfully. That is exactly what I wanted to do! Thank you very much!

The second issue is now irrelevant, and I discovered that I misrepresented my problem (because I misunderstood how the display works). When a text document is created in Writer, the window contains the blank page surrounded by a gray band. By sliding the horizontal scroll bar to the right, one can hide the gray band on the left side. When the text document is embedded in the spreadsheet, the gray band appears as part of the Writer window. I did not want that and thought it had something to do with my selection in the original Frame Properties menu.

That said, when I bring up the Frame Properties menu for my embedded file, I see the 'Spacing to Content' windows grayed out with values 8 & 12. A box labeled 'Default' is checked. If I click on the box (thinking it will remove the check mark and ungray the windows), the check mark remains and the upper window ungrays and the lower window does not. Changing the value in the upper window has no discernible effect. (But then I don't know what I am looking for.)

As I said, my original problem was solved; and I really don't need to take up more of your time. Thanks again.
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pluby
The Architect
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Joined: Jun 16, 2003
Posts: 11932

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I now understand what you meant by the gray border: you are seeing the normal Writer "edit mode" background. That is the main difference between the Insert :: Floating Frame and Insert :: Object :: OLE Object menus. With the Insert :: Floating Frame menu you really have NeoOffice Writer running within that frame so you see Writer's toolbars, background, scrollbars, etc.

I have never used floating frames for my own documents but my guess is that that menu is for if you want to embed what look like screen snapshots and still have the ability to edit what is in the embedded documents.

Patrick
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