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5.1 Table Formats

The generic table commands in STILTS (currently tpipe, tcopy, tmulti, tmultin, tcat, tcatn, tloop, tjoin, tcube, tmatch1, tmatch2, tmatchn, tskymap, tskymatch2, pixfoot, pixsample, plot2cube, plot2plane, plot2sky, plot2sphere, plot2time, plot2d, plot3d, plothist, cdsskymatch, cone, coneskymatch, sqlskymatch, tapquery, tapresume, tapskymatch and regquery) have no native format for table storage, they can process data in a number of formats equally well. STIL has its own model of what a table consists of, which is basically:

Some table formats have better facilities for storing this sort of thing than others, and when performing conversions STILTS does its best to translate between them, but it can't perform the impossible: for instance there is nowhere in a Comma-Separated Values file to store descriptions of column units, so these will be lost when converting from VOTable to CSV formats.

The formats the package knows about are dependent on the input and output handlers currently installed. The ones installed by default are listed in the following subsections. More may be added in the future, and it is possible to install new ones at runtime - see the STIL documentation for details.

Some formats can be used to hold multiple tables in a single file, and others can only hold a single table per file.


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STILTS - Starlink Tables Infrastructure Library Tool Set
Starlink User Note256
STILTS web page: http://www.starlink.ac.uk/stilts/
Author email: m.b.taylor@bristol.ac.uk
Mailing list: topcat-user@jiscmail.ac.uk