Question: controlling the background (or fillcolor?) of nested tables

I am trying to create a certain visual effect in a Maple document / worksheet.

Basically, I have a small table with colored cells that I want to embed in a worksheet with an altogether different fill color. This sounds simple enough, but it appears that Maple's tables don't allow this.

In the attached document / worksheet [ ] I outline what I am trying to do. In the three sections in this worksheet you see the steps I am using to create this effect, and exactly where the problem arises.

  1. First, I show the original table in the document - not embedded in a table. [ TableColorTest-1.pdf ]
  2. Second, the initial table is inserted in a larger (1x1) table - with no color assigned to the cell in the outer table. [ TableColorTest-2.pdf ]
  3. Third, I change the cell color of the outer table and this color overwrites the fill color of the inner table. (I also note that once I change the color on the outer table's cell I can't return to the state described in 2. above.) [ TableColorTest-3.pdf ]

What I see is that the cells of the inner table inherit the fill color of the background in the outer table. The highlight color of any text within the table is respected, but the space between the text and the cell border is the color of the outer table - I want each cell to be filled by the fill color specified for that cell.

One way to describe what I want is that Maple should respect layers. When something is pasted in it is on a higher level. In some cases it might be worthwhile to have some transparency so that colors can bleed through from lower levels - but this should not be the default.

Does anyone have any ideas about how to achieve the desired effect? (If not, I hope this functionality can be enabled for Maple 15, or shortly thereafter.)


P.S. I have looked at the XML in the attached .mw file. I see specifications of fillcolor, background, and opaque but I don't know how to set them - either through the Maple interface or by direct editing - to achieve my desired effect.

Douglas B. Meade <><
Math, USC, Columbia, SC 29208 E-mail:
Phone: (803) 777-6183 URL:
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