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25.15.3 Table Recognition

Existing text-based tables in a buffer, which lack the special text properties applied by M-x table-insert, are not treated specially as tables. To apply those text properties, type M-x table-recognize. This command scans the current buffer, recognizes valid table cells, and applies the relevant text properties. Conversely, type M-x table-unrecognize to unrecognize all tables in the current buffer, removing the special text properties and converting tables back to plain text.

You can also use the following commands to selectively recognize or unrecognize tables:

M-x table-recognize-region

Recognize tables within the current region.

M-x table-unrecognize-region

Unrecognize tables within the current region.

M-x table-recognize-table

Recognize the table at point and activate it.

M-x table-unrecognize-table

Deactivate the table at point.

M-x table-recognize-cell

Recognize the cell at point and activate it.

M-x table-unrecognize-cell

Deactivate the cell at point.

See Converting Between Plain Text and Tables, for another way to recognize a table.