"After reading superboyac's excellent treatise on "information collectors""
Could you share the link please?
"how does one handle the data normally contained in tables"
Well, that would depend both on the origin of the data you normally would have put into the table, and on the USE you ideally would have made of that data (if it were stored in a table) - from that point on valid advice would be possible, not without that knowledge.
I'll give two examples:
- some IMS come with "columns"; unfortunately, it's a trap to put data into those "columns" = item attributes, in most cases, bec such data will not be exportable ever after, or with difficulty
- if you don't need "live", frequent writing access to your data, why not link an item containing a .jpg of the table, to the original table? (of course, broken links probs could then occur, without proper planning: If you don't have hundreds of such external tables, putting them all together in just one directory would be preferable to splicing them up into numerous folders-by-context (= you would organize context within your IMS, not try to double it within the file system, for these)) (also, for memory/fast display reasons, is Excel mandatory, in such a coupling, e.g. for need of elaborate data processing, or is it simply a set of un-touched values, where tiny MS Works or other simple spreadsheets could be linked instead? There might be free offerings for very simple tables) (Also, a short macro could automatically load the respective original file, whenever you then display such a "special" item, even for frequent writing access, if needed; in such cases, even the copying of the "pic" of the table into the item would be counterproductive, since most of the time, the pic would be out of sync (or synching would be too much fuss) - here, just the item's title, in the tree, could contain the link, which would omit the intermediate step of first going to the content field of the item, then to trigger the link only)
As said, it all depends on the origin (and extent) of the data, and your typical access to it; just for reading of seldomly changed data, a pic of the original file, plus the link to it, would be best.