Creating and Editing Content

Content is contained in modules and can consist of both text and expressions. The content of a document is primarily contained in Blackboard Modules and Document Modules.

In a Blackboard Module, you can put expressions (and text) where ever you want in the module. At this point you aren't ever prevented from overlapping expressions. A Document Module, on the other hand, is intended to behave more like a word processing document. There are also two other kind of modules, Object Modules and Unit Test Modules. These modules are not really designed to contain the content of a document and are covered separately.

Creating and editing expressions is described in Symbolic Expressions - Overview and adding text to content is covered in Creating and Editing Text - Overview. You can also add images and graphs to a module. Adding images is covered in Images. Adding graphs is described in Graphs - Overview.

Editing modes

There are two main editing modes, one for text and one for expressions. You can switch between the editing modes by double clicking on either text (in Expression mode) or any expression (in Text mode). You can also switch modes using the escape key. The editing modes are described in detail in Editing modes


Notations are used to control the way content is displayed. There are two built in notations (Document and Standard) that are commonly used when creating and editing content in Document and Blackboard modules. The Standard notation allows you to see all of the objects that are included in the content to control how the text is displayed. This can make it easier to edit the formatting in some cases. The Document notation displays the content the way it's intend it to look in a document. Notations can be edited and new notations can be created. See Notations - Overview for more details.

Exporting content

Content can be exported to either a file or to the clipboard. This allows you to both export a whole module (for example, you could export as either LaTeX or HTML) or you can export highlighted content by copying to the clipboard. When you export by copying, the content that is being copied to the clipboard is placed on the clipboard in two formats. The first format is proprietary to the Sym application and is used the when you copy and paste within the Sym application. The second format is text that is generated by the copy exporter that is selected in the Document Options dialog. See The Document Options Dialog for more details.