I'm assuming that the Rows and Columns on the appearance tab in a textarea field mean we can display the text in that manner. For example, 10 items in a 5-row 2-col format. Is that even correct? I have data in the Default value for the textarea, but it comes out in 1 column no matter what I do. Tried comma delimited with two data elements per row - tried 10 rows in the textarea to see if it would fill in the rows and columns. None of it worked.
So if it can display in rows and columns, how do we specify it? Can't find "cols" in either the docs or this forum.
The rows and columns parameter is the size of the textarea, not the way the content is displayed. Rows means how many line of text appear for you to enter content, and columns means how many columns (characters) for that content area.
If you want to display fields in columns, please use the Meta Box Columns extension. Then in the Builder, you'll see a parameter to enter how many columns that field will take.