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I often use R's xtable library or emacs org-mode to create tables in LaTeX (they are wonderful, by the way). I wonder if there are other tools people use which facilitate construction of large tables containing more text than data. I think I might have at one point also used OpenOffice/LibreOffice Calc's export tool designating delimiter (&) and eol (\\).

One remaining issue with most of these tools is that the generated tables by default do not wrap longer lines of text so I have to post-process with a tool like Python to insert the contents of each cell in a minipage environment. I wonder if anyone here has better workarounds for this type of application, particularly graphical tools which do not require the user to keep track of &s and \\s spanning multiple lines in a .tex file?

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See some of the answers to this question: Tool for manipulating LaTeX tables. – Alan Munn Jul 9 '11 at 12:41
Is pgfplotstable capable? – Siyuan Ren Jul 9 '11 at 12:55
Why insert the contents of each cell into a minipage? Doesn't the p{...} column type work? – You Jul 9 '11 at 23:27
@Alan Munn, thanks -- that thread was very helpful. I have to try out Calc2LaTeX to see if multi-line fields are exported correctly. – crippledlambda Jul 12 '11 at 0:36
@Karsus Ren, I was not aware of pgfplotstable and it looks great for formatting data tables, but I think it does not allow multi-line text (and so similar in functionality to R's xtable library, but with more control over formatting). – crippledlambda Jul 12 '11 at 0:38
up vote 3 down vote accepted

You may want to try pgfplotstable package, though it is not graphical.

As for the word wrapping, you should specify a column width at the start of the table environment.

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