RE: Table layout - Which way is best?

Subject: RE: Table layout - Which way is best?
From: "Sweet, Gregory (HEALTH)" <gregory -dot- sweet -at- health -dot- ny -dot- gov>
To: William Sherman <bsherman77 -at- embarqmail -dot- com>, TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 11 May 2015 14:07:08 +0000

Neither and both.

You are not finding it under tables because you are not presenting tabular information. Tables require headings of some sort to indicate the commonality of each column or row and would be laid out horizontally or vertically depending on which view makes the most sense with the data.

You are presenting a list, and as such are only determining the width of the column in which to present the list. Your text should follow the rules for lists as laid out in your style guide of choice. Most guides I've encountered determine how to handle the list based on the length of the list. Short lists run inline and more list-specific formatting and rules are imposed as the list grows in size or complexity.

Also, most word processors and DTP software will give you
1 4
2 5
3 6
if you impose a column layout on the text. It will actually be more difficult to do it the other way if you are using styles as you would have to put the numbered items out of order to get that layout.

Cheers!

Greg


> -----Original Message-----
> From: techwr-l-bounces+gregory -dot- sweet=health -dot- ny -dot- gov -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+gregory -dot- sweet=health -dot- ny -dot- gov -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com]
> On Behalf Of William Sherman
> Sent: Monday, May 11, 2015 6:38 AM
> To: TECHWR-L
> Subject: Table layout - Which way is best?
>
> At work, there have been a couple of people who have suddenly changed
> the directions of tables in our books.
>
> Currently, we have a table that goes vertical in the first pair of columns, then
> vertical in the second pair of columns.
>
> 1 Main Body 4 Undercarriage
> 2 Work Access 5 Track System
> 3. Power Plant 6 Operator Cab
>
>
> What they have done is go left right, then down.
>
> 1 Main Body 2 Work Access
> 3 Power Plant 4 Undercarriage
> 5 Track System 6 Operator Cab
>
> Now on something short, probably most don't see an issue but several tables
> that we have like this has 30 or more items called out.
>
> I have been trying to find something that gives a rule for this we can point to.
> I am sure I've heard of studies that down the first set, then down the second
> set (newspaper column style or regular multi-column style text) is the
> recommended and easiest to read, but I just can't find that now. Looking
> through Chicago Manual of Style, I'm apparently missing it if it is in there.
>
> Searching tables styles or layouts on the Internet gets me a lot of furniture
> links.
>
> Unfortunately, our style guide doesn't address this and I believe that they
> may decide to actually put this into the style guide, since one is a manger in
> another group.
>
> Anyone have any links or references?
>
>
>
>
>
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References:
Not content with the definitions for "content": From: Tony Chung
Table layout - Which way is best?: From: William Sherman

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