06826727 is referenced by 345 patents.
A computerized system lays out document templates represented as a tree of text and shape elements, including variable elements. The user can define a shape element to have a maximize or minimize property in one or more dimensions. The layout makes the minimized dimensions of a shape as small as its contents will allow; and makes the maximized dimensions expand as much as available space allows. Such maximization or minimization can be performed within a horizontal or vertical sequence box. Variable values mapped into variable shape elements can include sub-trees of text and/or shape elements, including shape elements which have the maximize or minimize property, and elements which are themselves variable elements. An anchor point can be fixed at a selected point on a shape, causing the anchor point to remain fixed as the rest of the shape expands or contract. Variable Image elements can maintain the aspect ratios of images mapped into them as those images are scaled. The layout of variable element into which no variable values have been mapped can be suppressed. Both content and attribute values can be mapped into a variable element. Multiple content-mapping rule sets can be used with a given template, and multiple templates can be used with a given content-mapping rule set. The content mapping rules can include data-base queries that vary in response to variable data. Text or shape elements can be defined, respectively, by reference to text models, which defined text attributes, and geometric models, which define shape attributes.