# Convert nested text cell array

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Dora Schuller on 14 Oct 2021
Commented: Dora Schuller on 19 Oct 2021
Hi,
I have a nested text cell array of different lengths. I would like to make a table from them.
myarray = {{{'a'}}
{{'b'} {'c'}}}
myarray =
2×1 cell array
{1×1 cell}
{1×2 cell}
maxlen = max(cellfun(@numel, myarray));
newcellarray = cellfun(@(s) [s, repmat({''}, 1, maxlen - numel(s))], myarray, 'UniformOutput', false);
I got this:
newcellarray =
1×2 cell array
{1×2 cell} {1×2 cell}
When I do array2table:
array2table(newcellarray)
ans =
2×1 table
newcellarray
____________
{1×2 cell}
{1×2 cell}
But I would like to get something like:
var1 var2
'a' ''
'b' 'c'
Alternatively, if every row of the cell array would be converted to a python-list like structure, it would be even better:
['a', '']
['b', 'c']
Even better if every list would be different size:
['a']
['b', 'c']
##### 2 CommentsShowHide 1 older comment
Dora Schuller on 19 Oct 2021
I see, thanks for the answer. I just wanted to convert it to a human readable format, which displays what is exactly inside the cells. But the answer below worked.

DGM on 15 Oct 2021
I'm sure there's a simpler way, but idk.
This will convert to a table. Note that the table columns are cell vectors. This is the normal behavior of cell2table, and is necessary as the alternative would be a char column vector with empty elements -- something which can't exist, as arrays can't have holes in them.
myarray = {{{'a'}}
{{'b'} {'c'}}};
maxlen = max(cellfun(@numel, myarray));
newcellarray = cellfun(@(s) [s, repmat({{''}}, 1, maxlen - numel(s))], myarray, 'UniformOutput', false);
% if the inner cells are scalar:
newcellarray = vertcat(newcellarray{:});
newcellarray = cellfun(@(x) horzcat(x{:}),newcellarray,'uniform',false); % get rid of inner cells
T = cell2table(newcellarray)
T = 2×2 table
newcellarray1 newcellarray2 _____________ _____________ {'a'} {0×0 char} {'b'} {'c' }
I don't know anything about python, but I don't know why it wouldn't suffice to just get rid of the redundant nesting of the original cell array.
% alternative?
newcellarray2 = cellfun(@(x) horzcat(x{:}),myarray,'uniform',false); % get rid of inner cells
Dora Schuller on 19 Oct 2021
Thank you, this worked!

R2021b

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