Re: Markdown to PDF

Subject: Re: Markdown to PDF
From: "Elisa R. Sawyer" <elisawyer -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: Ryan Young <ryangyoung -at- gmail -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2015 11:00:20 -0800

Hi Ryan,

You've already gotten a few good suggestions, and I have one add to the
list.

Markdown is by design simple and therefore limited. LaTeX allows for
precise formatting, but it might be difficult to get your build to create
pdf's of the quality you want using Markdown. Moving toward Docbook is one
possibility, but there is another, somewhat more developer-friendly
solution--ReStructuredText using Sphinx, which can be considered a slightly
more grown-up version of Markdown:

You can find information on several Web sites:

http://sphinx-doc.org/contents.html
http://docutils.sourceforge.net/rst.html
http://pedrokroger.net/using-sphinx-write-technical-books/

To get a pdf from Sphinx you need to install a pdflatex plugin. The details
of what you need vary with operating system.

I inherited a set of docs that were created using Sphinx and had to find my
way around the process of editing in .rst files and building both HTML and
pdf output. I'm using Sublime Text with several plugins, on a Mac with OS X
Yosemite. I'm still learning some of the finer points but think that this
has a lot of potential.

In my case, I discovered that I can get some developer input when I hit a
road block with a specific issue, which makes the process fun and
interesting. This happens because Sphinx is seen as a tool for python
developers. I don't think that it's any more difficult to tweak the build
for good pdf's from this setup than it is to tweak DITA-OT or Docbook.

-Elisa



On Wed, Feb 18, 2015 at 8:56 PM, Ryan Young <ryangyoung -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:

> Hello,
>
> At my new job, what documentation there is is in Markdown. The engineers
> set up a script using pandoc to create some functional PDF output. The
> problem is that pandoc requires LaTex to produce the PDF, which doesn't
> give me very much control of things like the location of images in the
> document (or the ability to create links).
>
> I've played around with Atom and SublimeText, but neither gives me all that
> much more control over the PDF output. I've also suggested the company
> start using Confluence, which would solve the problem, but it seems like
> that will take a bit of planning.
>
> Any suggestions?
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--
Elisa Rood Sawyer
~~~~~^~~~~~
Technical and Creative Writer
"Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today." Mark Twain
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Doc-To-Help: The Quickest Way to Author and Publish Online Help, Policy & Procedure Guides, eBooks, and more using Microsoft Word | http://bit.ly/doctohelp2015

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Follow-Ups:

References:
Markdown to PDF: From: Ryan Young

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