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Copy a single column

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(+3, -2)
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Text that appears in columns or tables (mostly on websites) is hard to copy, it tends to highlight across all columns when you only want to copy what's in the first column. So a great function would be to only highlight one column if dragging forward, or multiple columns if dragging backwards.
simonj, Jun 18 2009

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       Could you link to a page that has that problem? i never encountered it before.
loonquawl, Jun 18 2009
  

       It happens with this page - at least for me (Mac). Try copying just the text of the idea.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 18 2009
  

       Using the difference between highlighting forward or backward to indicate which of them you prefer is kind of weird - who's going to remember that? Who's going to even know about its existence? It'll just be perceived as "sometimes it works funny".   

       Since the idea text is just all in one column, it's not that hard to stay within it, but I see your point - if you move the cursor outside, down to the annotations, it highlights those, too, as would be expected.
jutta, Jun 18 2009
  

       tables are the work of the devil!
po, Jun 18 2009
  

       I want a 'back' feature when I'm flipping through the word options when I'm texting on my phone. I always flip past the one I want. Always. Also, I'd like a 'keep as favorite' option. So my damn phone stops putting down 'foot' when I wanted 'dont'. I was going to make an idea of it, but I just thought I could put it here. I think it's because both ideas feel equally trivial yet existent.
daseva, Jun 18 2009
  

       yep, people looking for phone ideas will logically start from here :)
po, Jun 18 2009
  

       excel=evil=excel.
blissmiss, Jun 18 2009
  

       [jutta] - I just discovered yesterday in MS Word - if I'm trying to copy a paragraph without the paragraph break tacked on to the end, it can only be done highlighting forward. Going backward automatically extends the selection to include the break.   

       //"sometimes it works funny"// - uh, yeah, that would be the 'edited for offensive content' version of what I said...
lurch, Jun 18 2009
  

       //Try copying just the text of the idea.//
  

       //Text that appears in columns or tables (mostly on websites) is hard to copy, it tends to highlight across all columns when you only want to copy what's in the first column. So a great function would be to only highlight one column if dragging forward, or multiple columns if dragging backwards.//

Easy Peasy. I admit that it requires an inkling as to what tables are set in the HTML (as Po's anno suggests) but all you really need do be is acccurate with your click and drag.
It is not a 'One Size Fits All' solution as lots of bad coders are throwing up (sic) websites.
gnomethang, Jun 18 2009
  

       //Easy Peasy//High tech term. I love it.
blissmiss, Jun 18 2009
  

       [+] The nedit text editor allows columns to be selected for copying. (In the feature list, this is referred to as "Fully integrated rectangular selection.") So, column copying is fully baked...   

       However, nedit doesn't work on MS Windows platforms unless you've installed the X window system. And, of course, nedit's just a text editor, not a web browser.   

       On the other hand, if column copy is baked in a text editor, it's fully bakable in a web browser.
goldbb, Jun 18 2009
  

       I once saw an application designed to shred data off web pages. It would automatically figure out how the data was laid out in the selection you dragged out with the marquee, and could distinguish between rows, or columns, or both. So the algorithms are out there somewhere.
DrCurry, Jun 19 2009
  

       Several apps allow you to select text in a rectangle (like selecting icons on the desktop by dragging a rectangle) by dragging while holding down a modifier key.   

       // I once saw an application designed to shred data off web pages. //   

       What does that mean? (And what was the app, if you remember?) To me, "shredding data" means erasing it securely by overwriting it with random data.
notexactly, Jun 21 2019
  

       //shred// sp. "scrape".
FlyingToaster, Jun 22 2019
  

       That makes more sense.
notexactly, Jun 22 2019
  
      
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