Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Madoko ...

Earlier today I tweeted a link to Madoko, a Microsoft project to provide an online markdown editor. I was sufficiently intrigued to try  it out:

Syntax is definitely more Markdown like than pure Markdown but you don't need to read the documentation to use it providing you know standard Markdown - something that's a bit of a contradiction in itself.

The program uses the split screen model adopted by StackEdit and where you type in one screen and you see your text appear in the other, rather than the ReText style approach where you flip between an edit mode and a preview mode.

As a microsoft product the menus and document structuring tools are word like in style.

Responsiveness is similar to that with Zoho, Google Docs or using Retext on I'd categorise is as reasonable, but not amazing.
Like Retext on, while a web application it can link to other cloud stores such as Dropbox and One Drive.

Unlike most other markdown editors it produces either PDF output or HTML to publish web pages rather than offering any of the more conventional wordprocessor format outputs. And being positioned as a scientific writing tool, it will import LaTeX documents, as well as doing formulae nicely. PDF export goes via TeX and you also get the output TeX document to modify as well.

Using Apache Tika to analyse the pdf output one gets

producer: xdvipdfmx (0.7.9)
resourceName: document.pdf
xmp:CreatorTool: LaTeX with hyperref package

which is fairly standard for the LaTeX world.

Would I use it?

Possibly, although I'm comfortable enough using either Kate or Gedit to create markdown directly. It's certainly an alternative to StackEdit if you're working on a Chromebook, or working in an environment without a decent text editor.

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