When a modifying command is issued without a column reference and the current state of the result string is empty, the modifying command will automatically copy the full contents of the source string. This feature is called auto-copy.
When a copying command is issued without a column reference and the current state of the result string is empty, the copying command will automatically refer to the full contents of the source string. This feature is called auto-reference. Since the copying command might alter the contexts from the source string before placing it the result string (like the AX command does), an auto-reference sometimes, but not always, results in an auto-copy operation as well. Consult the description of each command to determine exactly how this is handled in each case.
In the descriptions of each command, a notation is made in the “Command type” entry as to whether the command will Auto Copy or Auto Reference the source string when no explicit column reference is specified.
When a command supports Auto Copy or Auto Reference, an implied column reference of 1+ is used. If that meets your needs, you do not need to specify 1+ explicitly. The Auto Copy and Auto Reference features allow you to simplify the coding of your mapping string when you are have just one command code in it.
When the current result string is not empty, the Auto Copy feature is not performed. That is because it would be unusual to completely copy the source string (perhaps for a second time) when something is already in the result string. If that is what you wish to do, you will have to actually specify 1+ as needed. Thus, an implicit Auto Copy feature will only be applied for any given mapping string when the result string is empty, which normally will only occur once. In contrast, the Auto Reference feature can be used as many times as needed in your mapping string.
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