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markLaTeXdown

Clearly,
an extended version of Markdown
including LaTeX-commands would be useful for mathematicians and surely
I’m not the first to think about this. In fact, I found a somewhat
pompous text New adventures
if hifi text
by someone claiming to have done precisely that (though
he doesn’t give much details nor post a version of his altered program).

Still, it is pretty clear how to convert a _Markdown+LaTeX_
textfile to plain LaTeX (at least for regex-lovers
). Modify the _Markdown.pl_ script so that the Markdown markup is
translated not to HTML-tags but to LaTeX-commands.

More
interesting material can be found in a thread on _Markdown and
Mathematics_ starting with this post. In it, they search for a good way to include
LaTeX-mathematical commands in a MarkDown text. In fact, this is part of
a more general quest for a good _escape character_ in Markdown to
create _Markdown plus something_ versions. They opt for
{{ and }} rather than the usual
$ signs.

I think the alternatives [
tex ]
and [ /tex ] are slightly better because
then you could feed the text to a functional WordPress installation with the
LaTeXRender
plugin installed and copy the relevant part from the HTML-source of
the resulting post to get a HTML-version of the mathematical text with
all LaTeX-code converted to pictures. Clearly, typing the suggested tags
is somewhat cumbersome so I would type them using the
{{ and }} proposal (one
{ is not enough because a lot a LaTeX code uses single
curly brackets) and then do a global replace to get the
LaTeXRender-tags.

Even more interesting would be to have a
version of the html2txt.py script for LaTeX, that is,
converting a LaTeX-file to Markdown + LaTeXcode which would give an easy
way to convert your existing papers to HTML if you feed the LaTeXRender
plugin with all the required newcommands and packages.

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