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The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

General information

The Clip Library is a customizable collection of clips (document fragments and pictures). You can use these clips to create documents more quickly, more efficiently and with less effort. These clips can be conveniently inserted in larger documents whenever suitable. Any document or graphic file whose format is supported by Atlantis can be saved as an Atlantis clip.

All the operations related to the Clip Library, can be performed through the Clip Library panel. This panel displays with a click on the corresponding button Button image at the top of the Control Board The Control Board is a component of the Atlantis GUI that brings together various tools and commands for document design. It is a set of panels each of which deals with one specific characteristic of the active document:

Control Board

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The Clip Library panel displays the contents of the Clip Library, and allows to perform various operations on the clips. You can use it to insert clips into documents, but also to rename, edit, remove clips, and make any adjustments to your Clip Library:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

The top section of the Clip Library panel displays a tree view of the different categories (collections) of clips currently available in your Clip Library. These are also the names of the subfolders where your clip collections are stored:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

The middle section of the Clip Library panel lists all the clips available in the currently selected clip folder (clip collection):

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

The clip names are actually the names of the files that contain them.

The bottommost section of the Clip Library panel displays a small preview of the clip currently selected in the middle section:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

The Clip Library includes an "Images" folder as a special folder. This folder is meant to host graphic files ONLY, of any graphic format supported by Atlantis (BMP, EMF, WMF, JPG, GIF, PNG).

When this Images folder or one of its subfolders is selected in the Clip Library top section, a special option is available in the Clips section to display small thumbnail previews of the clips instead of only filenames. Here is a screen capture with this Thumbnails option OFF:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

Now here is a screen capture with the Thumbnails option ON:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

Inserting clips

Any stored clip can be inserted into the active document window. This can be done in several different ways:

  • You can use the mouse pointer and drag & drop the source clip from the Clip Library panel to the target document.
  • You can simply double-click the clip name in the Clips section of the Clip Library panel.
  • And you can also click the Insert clip Button image button available at the bottom of the Clip Library panel.

Note about clip formatting:

Clips are inserted in a special way by Atlantis. Since different target documents often use different formatting, Atlantis operates so that as a rule any inserted clip should blend in with its target environment. Also clips are inserted in a different way depending on whether they are plain text or formatted clips.

— All plain text clips (clips which are ordinary TXT files) are always inserted with the formatting found at the insertion point. For example, any plain text clip will be inserted with Tahoma formatting if the target environment is originally formatted with the "Tahoma" font face.

— Things are a little more complex with formatted clips (RTF, DOC, COD files).

Such formatted clips are also inserted with the formatting found at the insertion point. Again, any formatted clip will be inserted with Tahoma formatting if the target environment is originally formatted with the "Tahoma" font face.

However some of the clip original formatting might be retained after insertion:

  • First, any "non-default" formatting such as bold, italic, underline, non-Auto colors, etc will be retained.
  • Also any "complex" formatting found in the original clip will be retained by Atlantis. A clip includes "complex" formatting when its parts are formatted with different values of a single formatting attribute. For example, a clip might be formatted with several different font faces (Arial and Tahoma, etc). In such cases, such "complex" formatting will be retained and the clip will automatically be inserted with the original font faces, no matter the font face of the target environment.
  • In some instances you might want to insert a clip completely AS IS, i.e. with its original formatting. This is possible too. Simply hold the Ctrl key pressed when inserting a clip. Atlantis will ignore the formatting of the target environment and the clip will automatically be inserted as it is previewed in the Clip Library bottom panel.

Note that any included fields are automatically updated as the clip gets inserted.

Important: the last paragraph end mark of a clip is always ignored when it gets inserted. So in a sense, any formatted clip should always include an extra paragraph end mark. For example, if you want to insert a text including 4 paragraph end marks, the corresponding clip itself should contain an extra paragraph end mark, i.e. 5 paragraph end marks in all.

Inserting clips as-you-type

As explained above, clips can be inserted from the Clip Library panel. But clips can also be inserted semi-automatically even when the Clip Library panel is not showing. If you click the Clip Library Options Button image button located at the bottom of the Clip Library panel, a Clip Library Options dialog will open. This dialog includes a special Replace clip names As-You-Type option:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

When this box is checked, clips can be inserted from the keyboard only. The method is as follows:

When you get to a point in your document where you'd like to insert a ready-made clip, simply type an asterisk (*) followed by the first 3 letters of the clip name.

A list of all the clips whose names begin with the same 3 letters will automatically pop up. For example, if you type "*bul", Atlantis will display a list of all the clips whose name starts with "bul". In the Atlantis default Clip Library, these are the names of all the available graphic bullets:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

You can then press the Enter key to replace "*bul" with the currently highlighted clip in the pop-up list.

To select a different clip in the list, you can either

  • use the cursor keys (Up, Down, Home, End),
  • or type the characters coming next in the clip name that you want to insert. As you type more characters, the list of displayed clips will get shorter, and it will be easier to select the required clip.

As you can see, this functionality of the Atlantis Clip Library can work very much as an auto-completion feature. This can be very useful if you use complex professional terminology in your documents. These words are often overlong, have got unusual spelling and most people have great difficulties typing them. These complex words can easily be stored in Atlantis clips, ready to be inserted at will with only a few easy keystrokes. You won't even need to memorize acronyms as is the case with the AutoCorrect feature.

Let's take an example. Let's suppose that you often need to type chemical terminology such as "saccharoperbutylacetonicum". Typing this word correctly from the keyboard might be a daunting task even to people professionally involved in this field. But inserting such a word in a document can be made as easy as ABC if you add a plain text clip to your Clip Library whose filename is "saccharoperbutylacetonicum(.txt)" and whose contents are "saccharoperbutylacetonicum".

So by simply typing "*sac" in your document, you would get a pop-up window with the corresponding clip name:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

The contents of that clip would automatically be inserted in your document as you press the Enter key.


But there is more to this Replace clip names As-You-Type option.

As you know, your clips are stored in "theme" folders. You might not remember clip names but undoubtedly you will remember the "theme" name of any folder of interest. For example, in "Closings", there are letter closings, in "Phrases", there are phrases that you often use in letters and documents, etc.

Now if you type 2 asterisks (**) followed by the first 3 letters of a clip folder, a list of all the folders whose name begins with the same 3 letters will automatically pop up. Let's take an example. Let's suppose that you have pictures of "Liners" and of "Lines" as sub-folders in your "Images" clip collection. Let's also suppose that you want to insert the picture of a line in your document. If you type "**lin" (2 asterisks + "lin"), Atlantis will display a list of all the Clip Library folders whose name starts with "lin":

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

You can then use the down arrow key or the mouse to highlight any appropriate folder. Or you can go on typing "lines". Pressing Enter key will then display the contents of the highlighted folder:

The Clip Library panel of the Control Board

You can then use keyboard or mouse to select any appropriate clip from the folder.


Finally, when the Replace clip names As-You-Type option is checked, you can type 3 asterisks (***). This would display a list of clips contained by the clip folder currently selected in the Clip Library. You could choose the desired clip from this list using the cursor keys or the mouse. Alternatively you could type the first letters of the name of the desired clip to select it in this list. Then press Enter to insert the selected clip to the document.

Adding clips to the Clip Library

To add a new clip to the Clip Library, simply select any relevant fragment in a document, right-click your selection, then use the Add to Clip Library command from the menu. A dialog will open where you have to specify a name for the new clip, and the host Clip Library subfolder. It is recommended to save graphic clips (pictures) exclusively to the special "Images" folder. There is a reason for this. Thumbnail previews will only be available for clips stored under this special "Images" folder.

There are other ways to add clips to the Clip Library:

You can use your file manager (usually the Windows Explorer) to manually add a new text or graphic file to any appropriate subfolder of the Clip Library.

You can also add a symbol or any unusual character as a clip to your Library from the Symbols dialog of Atlantis ("Insert | Symbol..." menu The main menu or simply menu is a horizontal bar with clickable commands anchored to the top of the main window of Atlantis:

Main menu
command). Simply select a symbol, then click the Add to Clip Library button. Atlantis will automatically add the symbol as a clip to the Symbols subfolder in the Clip Library. This Symbols subfolder will automatically be created by Atlantis when you use the Add to Clip Library button for the first time. Note that thumbnail previews are also available for this special "Symbols" clip folder.

Commands of the Clip Library panel

The toolbar at the bottom of the Clip Library panel includes the following commands:

Command Button Description
Insert clip Button image Inserts the currently selected clip to the current location in the document. Read above for more details.
Edit clip Button image Opens the currently selected clip in the associated application for editing.
Rename clip Button image Displays a dialog allowing to choose a new name for the selected clip. Note that clip names can include only characters allowed for filenames in Windows.
Delete clip Button image Deletes the selected clip.
Note that this operation cannot be automatically undone through the Undo command of Atlantis.
Copy to clipboard Button image Places the selected clip onto the Windows clipboard so that you could paste it to any Atlantis document or to another application.
Add document selection to Clip Library Button image Adds the current document selection as a new clip to the Clip Library. This command opens a dialog where you have to specify a name for the new clip, and the host Clip Library subfolder. Read above for more details.
Clip Library Options Button image Displays a dialog allowing to:
  • view the Clip Library folder in your file manager (normally in Windows Explorer), create, rename, move, delete subfolders or clips in the Clip Library,
  • toggle the Replace clip names As-You-Type option (read above for details).

See also...