Splitting and merging the topics in WhizFolders document

Are there commands to split a topic and to merge 2 or more topics into one topic?

Merging is easy to do by copy and paste. There is no direct command to split but we have different ways to achieve it. More details follow.

Merging by Copy/Paste:

You need to select two or more topics in the list that you want to merge. Then copy them to the clipboard. Now create a new topic, start the editor on it and do a paste. This will paste the merged contents. There is an option to include the topic names of the selected topics too in the merged contents. You can see this option on the Edit menu,  “Include topic names too in above operation(s).”

Let me give you an example:

  1. I select 3 topics to merge in the list of Topics, named, “Branch,” “Integration,” and “Release,” I copy them to the clipboard by the Keys “Ctrl + C” or by using the copy button on the toolbar.
  2. I create a new topic “Merge,” open this topic in the advanced editor, and paste.The text from the 3 topics gets copied in a single topic as shown in the picture:


You can even do the paste in a word processor document to get the merged content.

Merging by Export:

Instead of copy/paste, you can also export the merged content to an RTF file or to an RTF file in the Word outline format. Just select the topics that you want to merge in the same way. Then use one of the operations on the menu ”
“Tools–Export” to create the desired RTF file.

Splitting a big topic or a word processor document in multiple topics:

This is described in another Blog article, Breaking up a large Word document into topics.

Importing and splitting an external big text file into multiple topics:

Suppose you have a large text file outside WhizFolders and you want to split it into multiple topics. You need to first understand how you are going to indicate to WhizFolders at what positions the text needs to be split. If the text file already has a repeating fixed word or phrase before each text block that you want to make into a topic then your job is easy. But first let’s take a case where no such repeating fixed word or phrase exists as in the following example.

  • To tell WhizFolders where the splitting should occur, I open the big text file in a text editor like Notepad/Wordpad and insert a fixed word “Split” in many places in the file as shown below.
  • Split
    A] Committing the Code changes into the Branch
    Activity ID:  Desc:
    B] Committing the Branch into the Torch
    Task ID:  [Branch Name: , Revision No: ] Desc:
    D] Doing the release of the application through 'Release' folder
    Release Name: : [Revision No: ]
    Tasks Integrated:
    Task ID:  [Branch Name: , Revision No: ] Desc:
  • Now I go to the WhizFolder document in which I want to insert the topics from this text file and click on the menu “Insert–Topics from a text file…”
  • A file selection dialog comes up where I select this text file that I prepared.
  • Now WhizFolders asks me for a topic prefix that means the fixed word or phrase that appears before each topic in the text file. In the above case, the prefix is “split” and I type it in and click on OK.
  • WhizFolders then imports the text file, splitting it at the fixed word shown to make many topics. Please see the following picture.
  • merge1.bmp

Note that the topic names were made up from the next line after the “Split” that I inserted. I could have given my own names to these topics by entering “Split: a topic name” instead. Then the topic prefix that I would specify to WhizFolders would be “Split: “.

Let’s take another example. Let’s say you want to export a number of email messages in your email software to a single text file and then want to import them in WhizFolders, each as a separate topic. If you select a number of email messages in your email software and save them together in a text file, you might get a fixed word automatically depending on the email software and its features. For example, each email message would begin with “FROM: “. In this case, you don’t need to edit the text file to insert your own topic prefix. You can simply tell WhizFolders to use the topic prefix “FROM: ” when importing that text file and it will make a topic out of each email message. But the topic names would be made from whatever text follows the FROM: on that line.

If you know any kind of programming, you can make quite interesting WhizFolder documents this way. For example, one WhizFolders user wrote a script to generate a text file containing a calendar event notebook for the whole year. In the script, he could generate a proper topic prefix and the name he wanted to give to these topics. The resulting event files are very useful and can be found at the bottom of the Calendar page on this web site. You can download a file from there and use it in WhizFolders.

Removing hard returns in the pasted text

Many times, the pasted text is copied into a topic with hard returns in its formatting. I have manually removed these hard returns so that the text flows fully across the WhizFolders editor screen. Is there a quick way of removing these hard returns in the copied text?

The hard returns come from the source application or the document. But you can fix them in the advanced editor. You need to click on “Start Advanced Editor” to open the Advanced Editor window. Select the text in which you want to remove the hard returns. Go to menu “Edit -> Join Lines to make Paragraph.”

We will review this feature again to additionally provide it in the quick editor as well as in the watch clipboard’s preview text screen.

Copying topics between documents

Question: How do I copy a topic from one WhizFolder document to another?

Just copy and paste the topics. Note that the subtopics are copied automatically when you do that.

You can also used Drag & Drop to copy from one list of topics to another but for that you need to switch off the Tabbed pages feature on the List of Files page so that you can open two WhizFolder files in separate windows.

How can I duplicate a topic?

You can do it in two ways:

1) Select a topic and drag it to a target place in the list and
press CTRL so that the cursor changes to ‘+’. Drop it and it will
create a duplicate along with its children.


2) Copy the topic to the clipboard and paste.

The nice thing is that these methods allow you to copy topics to another document too. Also, the child topics are automatically copied with the parent.

Is there anyway to set the default font in the editor windows so that when I paste the small print web content to the window the text will appear as the font set in the window? At present, I have to highlight the entire pasted text and change the font.

The default paste in the topic editor uses the RTF or Rich Text Format. That will always paste RTF copied from the other application and whether the other application supports and puts the RTF format on the clipboard. For example, Internet Explorer puts RTF on clipboard but FireFox doesn’t.

Always use Paste Plain Text when in doubt

If you use “Paste Plain Text” operation, it will paste the text in your document’s default font. But, it won’t preserve rich text attributes like colors, bold, italic, etc. If that is not ok with you, you have to select the entire pasted text and change the font manually.

Many times when I paste from Internet, the lines are joined and the text does not look same. Why?

This is a browser problem. The browser does not copy RTF format to the clipboard with proper line breaks. By default, WhizFolders tries to paste RTF but that is copied wrong from the browser.

You can instead use “Paste Plain Text” operation which will put the line breaks properly. You can also try Paste Special in the editor and then select Unformatted Text to be pasted.