[Solved] Numbering formulas

Discuss the formula editor

[Solved] Numbering formulas

Postby jwm57 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 6:28 am

First may I compliment the chef(s), I just made my first attempt at entering a complex formula in Math as a test to see if I can use OOo for a book I'm writing on musical string calculations (working from the documentation in the Writer Guide). I bypassed the "selection window" and the "context menu" as I'd had a couple of abortive efforts with them on simple formulae - I used the Math commands reference tables to write out my formula in markup in the equation editor. My result was almost exactly what I wanted, and the only fault was because of my failure to properly close all my brackets. When I paired them right the result was perfect. This was a formula I invented as a test, it involved a reciprocal multiplying a square root of a fraction with the numerator being a quantity that was a variable to a power plus another variable over a single variable. I was impressed, the radical was sized to fit over the entire complex fraction - and the multiplier was vertically centered on the line of the fraction in the radical, as well as the equals sign and the resultant variable. Wow, I'm impressed :D

Pardon the preamble, but I'm quite excited about the result (I had written out the markup on a piece of paper in my armchair with a beer, not really expecting it to work). now to the question.

The purpose of numbering formulas as described in the Writer Guide isn't really clear, and it didn't work in any way for me. Pp 502/3 of the Writer Guide says to "start a new line, type fn, then hit F3". I did that (in the equation editor) and got "fn" at the end of my formula and an error message from SetPoint (which is my Logitech mouse software) that F3 was not defined. I had started the new line by hitting enter after the markup of the formula in the equation editor.

So my question is twofold. Firstly, does OOo need to be told to load function key uses to the basic system in order for them to work? I haven't fully familiarized myself with the Writer as I wanted to test the Math section first.

Secondly, the use of the formula numbering. The brief description in the Guide seems to imply that one can call a stored formula with the "fn F3", but it also seems to imply that the numbering is merely the addition of the marginal number of the formula on the line - so the later text can refer back to it. Either use is legitimate, but which is it (or both)?

Best, Jon
Last edited by jwm57 on Sun Jan 03, 2010 8:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Numbering formulas

Postby acknak » Sat Jan 02, 2010 7:29 am

Firstly, does OOo need to be told to load function key uses...

No. The "fn, F3" is a Writer feature; it has no special effect in the Math formula editor.

If you want a numbered formula in a Writer document, type the letters "fn" then press F3. Writer will replace the letters with a sample formula and a numbering field, enclosed in a simple table for layout. You can then edit the formula and replace it with your own.

Secondly, ...the Guide seems to imply that one can call a stored formula with the "fn F3", but it also seems to imply that the numbering is merely the addition of the marginal number of the formula on the line - so the later text can refer back to it. Either use is legitimate, but which is it (or both)?

The latter.

The numbering is just a label that you can use in the text to refer to a particular equation. Writer can help by providing a sequence of numbered labels that is consistent and updated automatically.

The "fn, F3" is a shorthand method to insert an "AutoText" (Edit > AutoText), which is just a document fragment stored under an abbreviation, "fn" in this case. The stored autotexts are not special in any way; they're just ordinary content you could enter yourself.
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Re: Numbering formulas

Postby jwm57 » Sun Jan 03, 2010 8:15 am

Thanks acknak - and I do love your nom de plume. Many years ago I was a contract Assembler programmer doing the fixes and bells and whistles on CitiCorp's international money transfer system based in Belgium. The young systems engineers were discussing the use of "flow control" in a proposed modification. Being unfamiliar with "systemeze" I said "what the hell is flow control". An old programmer soak from the bank said "don''t worry Jon, they just mean Ack/Nak". Those were great days for contact programmers - we got paid three times as much as our bosses, as the corporate view was that a programmer was just doing simple dog work so wouldn't pay the job description. The people who needed things to actually work had to go outside to "consultants", but all we were was people who actually understood the innnards of the computer.

Best, Jon
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Re: [Solved] Numbering formulas

Postby acknak » Sun Jan 03, 2010 3:59 pm

I'm afraid it's true: I'm an old dog who can't make up his mind! ;-)
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Re: [Solved] Numbering formulas

Postby djconnel » Mon Nov 23, 2020 10:16 pm

I was confused because when instructions say to hit "fn" I had assumed that was the Mac "fn" button (which allows the application to receive the fn button rather than it being intercepted by the OS), but of course OpenOffice is multi-platform, and most platforms do not have an "fn" button. Instead it's to type the letter "f" followed by the letter "n". Who knew?

Then there's the issue that creating an equation in the conventional way does not generate the equation number: there seems to be no way to do it with the pull-down menus, which is very strange.
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Re: [Solved] Numbering formulas

Postby Lupp » Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:39 pm

The "fn" is simply a chosen (originally predefined) shorthand key for "Formula Numbering" and pressing the F3 key after having typed the letters orders the AutoText tool to insert an instance of the AutoText item stored with this shorthand key assigned. You can create your own AutoText items and assign keys to them. In every case the same keyboard key (F3 by default) is used to call the AutoText tool then.

The predefined AutoText 'fn' consists of a TextTable with one row and two colums. One of the cells contains a kind of Math formula template which you will open for editing to get there what you actually want.
the other cell contains a simple numbering with the number enclosed by parentheses. The number itself is prepared to be incremented with every new instance of the inserted AutoText. To enable this, it is implemented as a TextFiled of type "Number Range". Writer comes with some predefined NumberRange types, but you can create additional types. The one used in our current case is named "Text".

If you want a different Math template better sutable for you and/or a different kind of numbering (including chapter numbers e.g.) or a formula numbering concept where the number is bound to the formula itself by a TextFrame instead of a TextTable ... : Create a simple example and make an AutoText entry of it, choosing a name and a shorthand for it.

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