# Create a command for 'menu sequences'

I'm trying to create an extendable command that can take in a single argument (possibly in the following form):

\menuentry{File:New:Class}


And generate something like:

\texttt{File -> New -> Class}


The issue is that the arguments have to be flexible. I should be able to provide any depth of menus. The reason for doing this is that I might want to change the formatting later on and I don't want to have to replace all the texttts manually.

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## 5 Answers

The etoolbox package is rich with list processing options. Here's one attempt.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{etoolbox}% http://ctan.org/pkg/etoolbox
\newcommand{\menuitem}{\texttt}% Menu item formatting
\newcommand{\menusep}{\ensuremath{\rightarrow}}% Menu separator
\newcommand{\menuend}{\relax}% Menu end
\makeatletter
\newcommand{\menulist}[1]{% \menulist{<menu list>}
\def\menu@sep{\def\menu@sep{\menusep}}% http://tex.stackexchange.com/a/89187/5764
\renewcommand*{\do}[1]{\menu@sep\menuitem{##1}}%
\menulistparser{#1}% Process list
\menuend%
}
\makeatother
\DeclareListParser{\menulistparser}{:}% List separator is ':'
\begin{document}

\menulist{File:New:Class}% 3 menu items

\menulist{Tools:Options:Advanced:Properties:Document}% 5 menu items

\menulist{}% 0 menu items/empty list

\menulist{Help}% 1 menu item

\menulist{Your:Menu:Sequence:Here}

\end{document}


\DeclareListParser{<cmd>}{<sep>} declares a list parser command <cmd> that processes a single argument as a list, with list item separator <sep>. The use of this definition is to accommodate an item:item:item:... style list. For regular CSV lists, you could also use \docsvlist which is predefined as \DeclareListParser{\docsvlist}{,} by etoolbox.

The main command \menulist{<menu list>} parses the list and formats each entry using \menuitem{..} but also adds a custom separator \menusep. The last menu item is followed by \menuend. The \menusep is applied with a "single delay" using one of the Cunning LaTeX tricks.

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All the answers are good but this one seems to be the most robust. So, I'll accept this one. – recluze Jan 10 '12 at 6:25

A LaTeX3 solution; some input and output parameters are customizable via a key-value syntax. Notice that the default delimiter : must be set after \ExplSyntaxOff. Keys set in the optional argument of \menuentry are local to that command only.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{xparse}

\ExplSyntaxOn
\NewDocumentCommand{\menuentry}{ O{} m }
{
\group_begin: % to segregate local changes to keys and font
\keys_set:nn { menuentry } { #1 }
\exp_args:NNx \seq_set_split:Nnn \l_menuentry_seq { \l_menuentry_inputsep_tl } { #2 }
\tl_use:N \l_menuentry_font_tl
\bool_set_false:N \l_tmpa_bool
\seq_map_function:NN \l_menuentry_seq \menuentry_process:n
\group_end:
}
\NewDocumentCommand{\menuentryset} { m }
{ \keys_set:nn { menuentry } { #1 } }

\tl_new:N \l_menuentry_font_tl
\tl_new:N \l_menuentry_sep_tl
\tl_new:N \l_menuentry_inputsep_tl
\seq_new:N \l_menuentry_seq

\cs_new:Npn \menuentry_process:n #1
{
\bool_if:NTF \l_tmpa_bool
{ \l_menuentry_sep_tl }
{ \bool_set_true:N \l_tmpa_bool }
\tl_if_empty:nTF { #1 } {EMPTY~ARG!} { #1 }
}
\keys_define:nn { menuentry }
{
menufont .tl_set:N = \l_menuentry_font_tl ,
menusep  .tl_set:N = \l_menuentry_sep_tl,
inputsep .tl_set:N = \l_menuentry_inputsep_tl,
}
\keys_set:nn { menuentry }
{
menufont = \sffamily ,
menusep  = ${}\to{}$
}
\ExplSyntaxOff
\menuentryset{inputsep=:}

\begin{document}

\menuentry{}% 0 menu items/empty list

\menuentry{Help}% 1 menu item

\menuentry{File:New:Class}% 3 menu items

\menuentry{Tools:Options:Advanced:Properties:Document}% 5 menu items

\menuentryset{menufont=\ttfamily,menusep=~>{ },inputsep=/}

\menuentry{Help}% 1 menu item

\menuentry{File/New/Class}% 3 menu items

\menuentry[inputsep=|]{Tools|Options|Advanced|Properties|Document}% 5 menu items

\end{document}


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Here's an example using the xstring package

Have a look at the documentation- there are a lot of other commands that could help you customize this command.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{xstring}

\newcommand{\menuentry}[1]{\StrSubstitute{#1}{:}{$\rightarrow$}[\dummy]\texttt{\dummy}}

\begin{document}

\menuentry{File:New:Class}

\menuentry{File:New:Class:SubClass}
\end{document}

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If you're going to use math mode, isn't it better to write $\rightarrow$ instead of faux-arrows? – Ryan Reich Jan 10 '12 at 5:38
@RyanReich yes, completely agree :) Looks like Werner did too- thanks! – cmhughes Jan 10 '12 at 17:13

You can place the menu items in a list and iterate over it. Here is a short MWE as to how to iterate over the list. I have included for a small image uncomment the relevant line to include your own.

\documentclass[justified]{tufte-book}
\usepackage{lipsum}
\begin{document}
\def\spacer{\hspace{3pt}}
\def\test{}
%\def\test{\includegraphics[height=7pt]{./graphics/web/add.png}}
\def\alist{Dashboard, Content, Structure, Hello~yannis, Log Out, \test}
\makeatletter
\noindent\fbox{%
\begin{minipage}{9cm}
\noindent\colorbox{black}{\small
\@for \i:=\alist \do{\color{white}
\texttt\i\spacer
}}
\smallskip
\tiny \lipsum[1-2]
\end{minipage}}
\makeatother
\end{document}

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Adapting my solution from Micro-graphics inline in text you can use the \foreach from the pgf package to iterate over the list:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{tikz}
\usepackage{etoolbox}

\newtoggle{FirstOne}%
\newcommand*{\Menu}[1]{%
\toggletrue{FirstOne}%
\foreach \x in {#1} {%
\iftoggle{FirstOne}{}{${}\rightarrow{}$}%
\texttt{\x}%
\global\togglefalse{FirstOne}%
}%
}%

\begin{document}
\Menu{File,New,Class} and then more text.
\end{document}

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@marc doesn't tikz load pgf? – wasteofspace Jan 10 '12 at 8:32
As a minor comment, the construct a$\rightarrow$b doesn't look as good as $a \rightarrow b$. Perhaps you could change it to a${}\rightarrow{}$b? – Marc van Dongen Jan 10 '12 at 8:36
@MarcvanDongen: Good suggestion. Have updated the solution. – Peter Grill Jan 10 '12 at 20:13