What are the alternatives to pandoc
April 30, 2008 6:55 PM   Subscribe

What are the alternatives to pandoc? I'm looking for tools that will allow me to maintain a large document in a simple plain text format such as markdown and compile it to PDF and HTML.

Bonus points will be awarded to PDF that is properly typeset (ideally by TeX) and HTML that allows customization via stylesheets, headers, footers, etc. There's nothing particularly wrong with pandoc, apart from the requirement of a Haskell compiler, which is a pain but not a showstopper; I'm just curious about the alternatives. Maintaining in LaTeX and compiling to PDF and HTML is not an option. The "source" must be something less markup-heavy, such as markdown or textile. GUIs are not necessary but must be available on OS X if their use is required.

Comments about their unique capabilities, favourite features, and their particular strengths and weaknesses are very welcome, as are links to documents that are available online (HTML or PDF) so I can see them in action.

Finally, is there a name for this kind of tool?
posted by caek to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
MediaWiki markup. For a demonstration, see Wikipedia.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:21 PM on April 30, 2008

Maruku is a command-line tool written in Ruby that mostly fits the bill. There are some examples of output documents on the website.
posted by thisjax at 1:26 AM on May 1, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks guys. Anyone for any more?
posted by caek at 4:06 AM on May 1, 2008

Muse for Emacs does this kind of thing. You write your document(s) in a Muse-specific format (it's kind of like Markdown), and then Muse can output those documents in many formats, including PDF and HTML. I believe that the produced HTML is customizable, although I've never had occasion to actually do that.
posted by esd at 7:02 AM on May 1, 2008

An update on the HTML customization: the HTML section of the Muse manual says that you can customize the header and/or footer used when generating HTML (by giving a simple string or by giving a path to a file) as well as the stylesheet used (by providing CSS in a string or with a link tag to an external stylesheet).

The relevant options are muse-html-header, muse-html-footer, and muse-html-style-sheet.
posted by esd at 7:14 AM on May 1, 2008

Ack! That last link should be like this: HTML section of the Muse manual.
posted by esd at 10:25 AM on May 1, 2008

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