4.3 Image objects4 Object types4.1 Path objects4.2 Text objects

4.2 Text objects

Text objects come in two flavors: simple labels, and minipages. There are two variants of these: titles (a label that serves as the title of the page), and textbox (a minipage that spans the entire width of the page).

The position you have to click to start creating a label object is normally the leftmost baseline point (but this can be changed by changing the object's horizontal and vertical alignment). A popup window appears where you can enter Latex source code.

A minipage object is different from a simple text object in that its width is part of its definition. When you create a minipage object, you first have to drag out a horizontal segment for the minipage. This is used as the top edge of the minipage—it will extend downwards as far as necessary to accomodate all the text. Minipages are formatted using, not surprisingly, Latex's minipage environment. Latex tries to fill the given bounding box as nicely as possible. It is possible to include center environments, lemmas, and much more in minipages.

To create a textbox object, simply press F10. Ipe automatically places the object so that it spans the entire width of the page (the layout settings in the stylesheet determine how much space is left on the sides), and places it vertically underneath the textboxes already on the page. This is particularly convenient for creating presentations with a lot of text, or with items that appear one by one.

Title objects are managed by Ipe automatically. They are special labels that are created using Edit title & sections in the Page menu. Their color, size, alignment, and position on the page is determined by the stylesheet.

You can use any LaTeX-command that is legal inside a \makebox (for labels) or inside a minipage (for minipages). You cannot use commands that involve a non-linear translation into PDF, such as commands to generate hyperlinks or to include external images.

You can use color in your text objects, using the \textcolor command, like this:

This is in black. \textcolor{red}{This is in red.} This is in black.
All the symbolic colors of your current stylesheet are also available as arguments to \textcolor. You can also use absolute colors, for instance:
This is in black. \textcolor[rgb]{1,1,0}{This is in yellow.} This is in black.

If you need LaTeX-commands that are defined in additional LaTeX packages, you can include (\usepackage) those in the LaTeX preamble, which can be set in Document properties in the Edit menu.

After you have created or edited a text object, the Ipe screen display will show the beginning of the Latex source. You can select Run Latex from the File menu to create the PDF/Postscript representation of the object. This converts all the text objects in your document at once, and Ipe will display a correct rendition of the text afterwards.

If the Latex conversion process results in errors, Ipe will automatically show you the log file created by the Latex run. If you cannot figure out the problem, look in the section on troubleshooting.

You can use Unicode text, such as accented characters, Greek, Cyrillic, Chinese, Japanese, or Korean, in your text objects, once you have set up the necessary style files and fonts.

When Ipe computes the bounding box for a piece of text, it relies entirely on the dimensions that Latex provides. Sometimes glyphs are larger than their "official" dimensions, and as a result this bounding box is too tight. In the following figure, "A" and "G" stick out of the golden rectangle (the bounding box computed by Ipe based on the Latex dimensions) at the top, "y" sticks out at the bottom:

When you experience that text in your figures is clipped, you may have to enlarge the figure's bounding box using a "BBOX" layer.

The opposite problem can occur when you use transformed text. Ipe computes the bounding box for the transformed text by transforming the bounding box for the original text, and the result can be too large:

If this is a problem, you can put the text object inside a group and set a clipping path for the group.