Help with importing comma delimited ASCII file into Numbers

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Damers, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. Damers macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    #1
    As the title says I'm having a heck of a time importing comma delimited or space delimited ASCII (text) files into Numbers and maintaining cell format.

    For example...

    NGC4051,0.25,52,12.2
    NGC4051,0.25,48,13.3
    ...etc..

    Will all get squeezed into one column (but successive rows) instead of being divided into separate rows and columns. I did a bit of googling but couldn't find an answer. I've been able to do this with Excel and OpenOffice recently, I must be missing something?

    Thanks!
     
  2. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #2
    They're called Comma Separated Values. I have no idea what you're doing wrong, but on my installation of Numbers opening a .csv file with your data just works.
     
  3. Damers thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    #3
    I knew it had to be something simple. I just changed the file extension from .txt to .csv and imported, worked fine. Thanks.
     
  4. SimonMTL macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2005
    Location:
    Montreal Canada
    #4
    Numbers 3.0

    Well, here is iWork Numbers 3.0, the latest version, and .csv files are no longer imported! Geez, what the heck is wrong with Apple these days? This is not a proprietary file extension, it's very common, and it's very annoying that it doesn't just recognize and import it properly.

    Any help??

    ----------

    Wow, this is messed up:

    Numbers 3.0 on Mac does not allow importing .CSV files (all columns are bunched up into one), but on iCloud it works perfectly with proper column formatting.

    Crazy! At least there's a workaround the lack of proper .CSV importing in the Mac version!!
     
  5. jjborja macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2013
    #5
    OpenOffice

    I was having trouble with a text file, that used ; as a delimiter. Changed the extension and it didn't work with Numbers 2.3 or 3.0.1.

    Had success with changing the extension to /csv and then using openoffice to parse. It has a handy tool to get data converted. Once imported, I then exported out as a csv and it opened fine with 2.3 and 3.0.1.

    Hope that helps
     
  6. Fishrrman, Dec 9, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2013

    Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    [[ Well, here is iWork Numbers 3.0, the latest version, and .csv files are no longer imported! Geez, what the heck is wrong with Apple these days? This is not a proprietary file extension, it's very common, and it's very annoying that it doesn't just recognize and import it properly.
    Any help?? ]]

    You can try opening the file in a text editor app that lets you see invisible characters.

    First, change all the commas into tabs. (See notes at end)
    Then, change whatever defines the "end of the record" into a carriage return.
    Rename the file with ".txt" as the file extension.

    You now have a "tab delimited" file which _may_ be importable into numbers.

    If Numbers still won't import the "closed" file, try this:
    - Open it again with the text editor
    - Be sure it's in tab-delimited format (tabs separate fields within a record, and each record ends with a carriage return
    - Create a blank spreadsheet in Numbers. Make sure it's "wide enough" and "long enough" to hold all the fields/records of the tab file
    - Copy the tab-delimted file from one end to the other, select the upper-left cell in Numbers, and paste everything in.
    - The tab characters will cause data in each field to flow into adjoining cells, and the carriage return will start a a new row.

    NOTE:
    It's possible that your data does not have "comma characters" actually separating the data -- this is why you need to make invisible characters visible so that you can see what is what before proceeding. I used "Tables" to save a file into "CSV" format, and found semi-colons used as field delimiters instead of commas.

    I changed all the semi-colons into tabs, did a "copy and paste" as I have described above, and the data went into Numbers.

    Important: you're going to lose any cell formatting when you do it this way. It will be necessary to check the entire spreadsheet and re-format cells as you wish...
     

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