Published Online:https://doi.org/10.1287/ijoc.2014.0637

Automatic layout of tables is useful in word processing applications and is required in online applications because of the need to tailor the layout to viewport width, choice of font, and dynamic content. However, if the table contains text, minimizing the height of the table for a given maximum width is a difficult combinatorial optimization problem because of the need to find the right choice of height/width configuration for each cell in the table. We investigate the modelling decisions involved in formulating this problem for use with standard combinatorial optimization techniques that are guaranteed to find the minimal-height table. To the best of our knowledge, we are the first to do so. We provide a detailed empirical evaluation of the resulting models using mixed integer programming and constraint programming with lazy clause generation.

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