We review the literature on automatic document formatting with an emphasis on recent work in the field. One common way to frame document formatting is as a constrained optimization problem where decision variables encode element placement, constraints enforce required geometric relationships, and the objective function measures layout quality. We present existing research using this framework, describing the kind of optimization problem being solved and the basic optimization techniques used to solve it. Our review focuses on the formatting of primarily textual documents, including both micro- and macro-typographic concerns. We also cover techniques for automatic table layout. Related problems such as widget and diagram layout, as well as temporal layout issues that arise in multimedia documents are outside the scope of this review.
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