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Cocoa Programming for OS X: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide by Aaron Hillegass, Adam Preble, Nate Chandler

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Tables, Cells, and Views

A table has columns and rows. The smallest unit in a table, formed by the intersection of a row and a column, is a cell. The same term is also used to refer to an instance of NSCell.

Historically, the difference between these two uses of cell was not a problem because tables in Cocoa were always cell-based tables. In a cell-based table, a cell is always an instance of NSCell or one of its subclasses.

Cell-based tables can technically still be used, but they have been deprecated in favor of view-based tables. In a view-based table, a table cell is an instance of NSView or one of its subclasses – most commonly NSTableCellView.

Table cell views

A table cell view can be as simple or complex ...

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