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Text Format

Reference: Tools-Text Format

Get Started |Calendar |Locations

The phrase Text FormatText Format is used within a RidgeStar Site to represent a mechanism of encoding text such that it will display with appropriate HTML tags to create a specific layout.


Specification of direct HTML containers has become increasingly complicated as the Internet has moved from the original HTML specification through and to the currently defined XHTML constructs. Most RidgeStar clients do not spend the time necessary to stay fully aware of the implications of getting this correct for display on their site.

As a result, a few clients have managed to embed incorrect html within their Topics or Text boxes and have successfully caused their Sites to generate HTML that cannot be properly formatted. This, obviously, is not a desirable result.

In an effort to address this and, in fact, eliminate the potential for incorrect formatting, RidgeStar provides a Text Formatter that will accept character strings with embedded key sequences and will convert these sequences to the proper levels of XHTML on output to the Browser. Further, even if the RidgeStar Text Format coding is incorrect, it will be handled by the Browser as standard characters. This means that even when making an error in the Text Format coding, the page that is sent to the Browser will not "break"

A Text Format Token

The Text Formatter syntax makes an effort to avoid the necessity of providing what is commonly known as "end tags". Instead, it utilizes a mechanism we call Token based processing. When formatting a string, it is first split into individual words (as delimited by blanks). Each of these elements is considered a Token and any applicable Text Format instructions will apply to the Token (the Formatter automatically inserts the required end tags on the back of the Token).

You can increase the size of a Token (for the purposes of formatting) by replacing embedded blanks with a tilde (~). This causes strings such as "Sample˜Text" to be handled and formatted as it they were a single Token. However, on output the tilde will be converted to a suitable blank. Thus, think of the Tilde as a "place holder" used simply for the purpose of extending a Text Format instruction across words.

Where can the Text Format mechanism be used?

The Text Format mechanism can be utilized in virtually any data field or form field that you will input at a browser and subsequently display the entered data as HTML based text on a site. It is active in the RIdgeStar Topics mechanism, Events entries (e.g. What's New entries), the Forum, etc.). It is also typically active in any TEXTAREA type input boxes (usually represented as a tall wide input form box such as Notes, Comments, etc.).

What do Text Format strings look like?

Version 4.2 and higher of the Text Formatter accepts and processes the elements, as described below. Some of them are simple to visualize and use, some less so. Don't worry if some of them seem inapplicable to your situation (they probably are). As always, send your questions along to your RidgeStar Account Representative.

Each Text Element is listed by its Common Name, followed by it's technical specification syntax. Variable information is identified within {braces}. FInally, each element below also demonstrates the formatting that would apply to THIS page (remember, it may format differently on another RidgeStar site, dependent upon that site's applicable Style Sheet).

AirNow [airnow]

Dynamically include the appropriate AQI (Air Quality Image) graphic from the EPA's airnow.gov site based upon which State you have configured in Setting=Chapter. If you've defined the Zip in Setting=Chapter, the image will be hyperlinked to the airnow.gov site for a full/complete display of the Air Quality.


Air Quality Index

Bold [b]

Format the Token bold, as defined by the currently applicable Style Sheet.



Break [br]

Create a HTML Break or new line.



Color [color]

Permits the formatting of a string utilizing the standard colors; aqua black blue fuchsia gray green lime maroon navy olive orange pink purple red silver teal white yellow

Change [red]Red to [teal]Teal~for display

Change Red to Teal for display


Permits the formatting of a string utilizing a browser supported Color Name or an equivalent Hex encoding (preceded with a # character).

Text can be [color=darkblue]DarkBlue or [color=crimson]Crimson or any valid Hex code like [color=#6495ED]#6495ED

Text can be DarkBlue or Crimson or any valid Hex code like #6495ED

Email Hyperlink [email={email}]

Format and display a hyperlinked Email address



Emoticon [:{emoticon}]

Provides a mechanism to embed smileys or emoticons (as defined at Reference: Internet-Emoticons)

Smile [:smile] and give the go [:ok] sign

Smile smile and give the go ok sign

Function [show({object},{key})]

Invoke a Site defined Show function where {object} can be User, Field, Location, or Organization and {key} is a numeric value in the specified database table.


Woodinville High School

Hyperlink [http{URL}]

Causes the Text Formatter to change an embedded URL string into a hyperlinked element

Click to [http://www.referees.biz/information] for more information

Click to http://www.referees.biz/information for more information

Italics [i]

Format the Token in Italics, as defined by the currently applicable Style Sheet.

Sample [i]Text

Sample Text

Line-Through [-]

Format Text with the Line-Through characteristic.

Sample [-]Line~Through text

Sample Line Through text

Ordered List [ol]

Format a simple List of Ordered Items

[ol=Point 1;Point 2;Third]

  1. Point 1
  2. Point 2
  3. Third

Paragraph [p]

Create a new Paragraph, as defined by the currently applicable Style Sheet.




Printable [printable]

Produces a clickable printable symbol that will invoke action=Printable on the page that it resides within. As a result, the page containing the [printable] tag will require support for action=printable in it.



Registered [reg]

Create appropriate HTML coding to dislay a Registered symbol



Site Information [cla...]

Provides access to Site specific, but common and fixed definitions.



Setting [cso...]

Permits the formatting of Options Settings values (for Sites utilizing Settings)


40,2 hours,2 years,5 days




  • 40
  • 2 hours
  • 2 years
  • 5 days


  • Strength=>40
  • ResetPeriod=>2 hours
  • Interval=>2 years
  • Warning=>5 days

Subscript [sub]

Format the Token as a Subscript, as defined by the currently applicable Style Sheet.



Superscript [sup]

Format the Token as a Superscript, as defined by the currently applicable Style Sheet.



Table Data [dus...], [dma...], [dfd...], [dlo...], [tsa...]

For those sites utilizing a Users, Matches, Fields, Locations tables (respectively) or Transient variables, these elements provide access to the data values that are in storage at the time the text string is formatted.

Your first name is [dusFirstName]

Your first name is Joe

Term [term]

Create a Reference to obtain the PopUp Term widget



Trademark [trade]

Create appropriate HTML coding to dislay a Trademark symbol


Unordered List [ul]

Create a List of elements with Unordered designation

[ul=List Item 1;List Item 2;List Item 3]

  • List Item 1
  • List Item 2
  • List Item 3

Vimeo [vimeo={video{,width,height}}]

Include a Vimeo iFrame to display a single video. the "video" is the Vimeo assigned code to the video that can be used by the Vimeo Player. "width" and "height" are the desired sizes for the embedded iframe container (default is width=640, height=480).


YouTube [youtube={video{,width,height}}]

Include a YouTube iFrame to display a single video. the "video" is the YouTube assigned code to the video that can be used by the YouTube Player. "width" and "height" are the desired sizes for the embedded object (default is width=425, height=355).