Text areas (editable and non editable)

Text areas (editable and non editable)

James Wettenhall & Philippe Grosjean bio photo By James Wettenhall & Philippe Grosjean

An editable text window

Here is a text area that completelly fills a Tk window.


win1 <- tktoplevel()
tktitle(win1) <- "My first text widget!"
# Note that width and height are in number of characters and lines
win1$env$txt <- tk2text(win1, width = 60, height = 10)
tkpack(win1$env$txt, fill = "both", expand = TRUE)

# A couple of commands to interact with the text widget:
# Add some text at the beginning of first line
"1.0", "Here is the text area...\nThis is a second line")
# Add text at the end of current one
tkinsert(win1$env$txt, "end", "\nFurther text added")
# Get the whole text
tclvalue(tkget(win1$env$txt, "0.0", "end"))
# Change the selection (select whole second line)
tktag.add(win1$env$txt, "sel", "2.0", "3.0")
# Place the cursor after the beginning of third line
# (cursor do not follow selection when it is set programmatically)
tkmark.set(win1$env$txt, "insert", "3.0")
# Get first position of the selection
tkindex(win1$env$txt, "sel.first")
# Get last poistion of the selection
tkindex(win1$env$txt, "sel.last")
# Get the range of the selection
tktag.ranges(win1$env$txt, "sel")

You can freely edit, cut, copy and paste in the text area.

text area

A non-editable text window

win2  <- tktoplevel()
tktitle(win2) <- "A read-only text"
win2$env$txt <- tk2text(win2, width = 60, height = 10)
tkpack(win2$env$txt, fill = "both", expand = TRUE)
# You must insert text before to disable edition!
tkinsert(win2$env$txt, "end", "Hello, world!\n(from a read-only text widget)")
tkconfigure(win2$env$txt, state = "disabled")

Here is what you get. Try editing the text.

text read-only

A text window with a vertical scrollbar

win3  <- tktoplevel()
tktitle(win3) <- "Text area with one scrollbar"
# Scrollbar must be defined first
win3$env$scr <- tk2scrollbar(win3, orient = "vertical",
command = function(...) tkyview(win3$env$txt, ...))
win3$env$txt <- tk2text(win3, bg = "white",
font = "courier", width = 60, height = 10,
yscrollcommand = function(...) tkset(win3$env$scr, ...))
# Use grid manager, telling to occupy the whole area
tkgrid(win3$env$txt, win3$env$scr, sticky = "nsew")
# Indicate that win3$env$txt must spread in x and y on window resize
tkgrid.rowconfigure(win3, win3$env$txt, weight = 1)
tkgrid.columnconfigure(win3, win3$env$txt, weight = 1)
# Populate the text area with many lines
for (i in (1:100))
tkinsert(win3$env$txt, "end", paste0(i, "^2 = ", i*i, "\n"))
tkconfigure(win3$env$txt, state = "disabled")

text scroll

Scrolling down reveals the remaining contents of the text widget:

text scrolled

A text window with horizontal and vertical scrollbars (and no word wrap)

win4  <- tktoplevel()
tktitle(win4) <- "Text area with two scrollbars"
# Scrollbars must be defined first
win4$env$scrx <- tk2scrollbar(win4, orient = "horizontal",
command = function(...) tkxview(win4$env$txt, ...))
win4$env$scry <- tk2scrollbar(win4, orient = "vertical",
command = function(...) tkyview(win4$env$txt, ...))
win4$env$txt <- tk2text(win4, width = 60, height = 10, wrap = "none",
xscrollcommand = function(...) tkset(win4$env$scrx, ...),
yscrollcommand = function(...) tkset(win4$env$scry, ...))
tkgrid(win4$env$txt, win4$env$scry, sticky = "nsew")
tkgrid.rowconfigure(win4, win4$env$txt, weight = 1)
tkgrid.columnconfigure(win4, win4$env$txt, weight = 1)
tkgrid(win4$env$scrx, sticky = "ew")
# Populate the text area with many lines
for (i in (1:100))
tkinsert(win4$env$txt, "end", paste0(i, "^2 = ", i*i, ", "))
tkconfigure(win4$env$txt, state = "disabled")

text double-scroll

Scrolling across reveals the remaining contents of the text widget:

text double-scroll scrolled

Entering Unicode characters in text windows

You can call a dialog box to enter Unicode characters from within R with the tcltk2 function tk2unicode_select() function:

win5 <- tktoplevel()
win5$env$txt <- tk2text(win5, width = 60, height = 10)
tkpack(win5$env$txt, fill = "both", expand = TRUE)
# Call the Unicode dialog box

You should see the following dialog box:

unicode dialog box

Naviguate through code pages, then select the character you want by double-click or by hitting Enter. The character is inserted into the target widget. Now, close the Unicode character selector, but don’t close the text window yet. It is also possible to define a compose key (Cmp), that is, a key to trigger a sequence of two keys to be combined into a special unicode character. Of course, you can freely choose the compose key and the sequences you want to use. Obvious sequences are: Cmp + ^ + e → ê, Cmp + a + e → æ, etc. But you can also define other combinations like Cmp + O + C → ©, or Cmp + m + u → µ. for instance. Also, hitting the compose key twice brings back the Unicode selector. Here is how you can configure your tk2text text widget (or a tk2entry entry widget) to use the key composer:

## Bind the key composer with our text widget

## Call the key composer configuration dialog box

Here is the key composer configuration dialog box (as you can see, it is called “Khim”):

unicode configuration dialog box

You have the opportunity to save your configuration on disk. If you do so, it will persist from session to session.

save configuration dialog box