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TeXMe

TeXMe is a lightweight JavaScript utility to create self-rendering Markdown + LaTeX documents.

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Note: If you are looking for a tool that renders only Markdown (no LaTeX), see MdMe, a stripped down fork of this project.

Contents

Get Started

Content in Textarea

Copy and paste the code below into an HTML file with .html as the extension name:

<!DOCTYPE html><script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script><textarea>

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

This file contains one line of HTML code followed by Markdown + LaTeX content.

Open this HTML file with a web browser. It renders itself to look like this: content-in-textarea.html.

There are two simple rules to remember while using TeXMe:

  • TeXMe removes any leading and trailing whitespace in the content before rendering the content to HTML.
  • TeXMe uses the first non-empty line of the content set the page title if no explicit <title> element is specified. Any leading and trailing whitespace and hash (#) characters are removed while setting the page title.

Content in Body

If you do not like to start your document with HTML tags, you can write your content first and add the <script> tag in the end like this:

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>

Here is the output: content-in-body.html.

Although, the code looks neater in this example, there is a limitation associated with this form of writing content: Since the content is part of the HTML <body> element (there is no <textarea> element in this code), the content should be written carefully, so that it does not have any HTML syntax error.

Caveats

While using the content-in-body method of using TeXMe, an HTML syntax error in the content can produced mangled output. For example, the following input is not rendered as expected because the content is in the <body> element, so the browser interprets this content as HTML and encounters the beginning of a start tag that is not closed properly:

Here is some unusual code:

    print('unusual <string')

<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>

Here is the broken output: unusual-code-body-broken.html.

The <string part of the code is interpreted as the opening of a start tag by the browser. What looks like a fragment of Python code to a human ends up being parsed as an HTML tag by the browser that looks like this: <string') <script="" src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0">. This mangled form of the input is then rendered leading to unexpected results.

There are two ways to resolve this. The first way, of course, is to put the content within a <textarea> element (as shown in the very first example in this document). The following input is fine because the content is put inside a <textarea> element.

<!DOCTYPE html><script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script><textarea>

Here is some unusual code:

    print('unusual <string')

Here is the output: unusual-code-textarea.html.

Since the content occurs within <textarea> element, the browser does not try to parse it as HTML and therefore does not mangle it.

The second way to resolve this involves using &lt; instead of <, so that the input no longer appears to have a partial start tag. Here is an example:

Here is some unusual code:

    print('unusual &lt;string')

<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>

Here is the output: unusual-code-body-fixed.html.

CDN URLs

Use the following URL in the <script> tag to load version 0.5.0 (the current version at this time) of TeXMe:

https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0

Use the following URL in the <script> tag to always load the latest version of TeXMe:

https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme

If you need something really easy to remember, use this URL to load the latest version of TeXMe:

https://unpkg.com/texme

Valid HTML5

The "get started" example in the previous section attempts to show how we can create a self-rendering document with a single line of HTML code but this brevity comes at the cost of standard conformance. For example, the required <title> element is missing from the code. Further the <textarea> element is not closed.

For the sake of completeness and correctness, here is a minimal but complete and valid HTML5 example:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">
<title>Notes on Euler's Identity</title>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>
<textarea>

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

</textarea>

Here is the output: valid-html5.html.

It has a few more lines of code to ensure that this HTML5 code validates successfully at validator.w3.org. As a result, this example does not look as concise as the one in the previous section.

In case you are wondering, a valid HTML5 document does not require explicit <head>, <body>, or the closing </html> tags. So they have been omitted for the sake of brevity while maintaining completeness and correctness.

In practice though, it is not necessary to write verbose code like this. All browsers follow the robustness principle, so they can render the shorter example in the previous section just fine.

Use TeXMe in Web Pages

Style

TeXMe renders the document on a white pane against a gray background by default. This is due to a configuration option named style that is set to 'viewer' by default.

To render the document with a minimal style on a completely plain white background, set the style configuration option to 'plain'. Here is an example:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script>window.texme = { style: 'plain' }</script>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script><textarea>

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

Here is the output: style-plain.html.

To render the document with absolutely no style, set style to 'none'. The 'none' style option is useful to disable the default 'viewer' style set by TeXMe before defining a custom style with regular CSS code. Here is an example:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script>window.texme = { style: 'none' }</script>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>
<style>
body {
  background: lightcyan;
}
main {
  max-width: 20em;
  padding: 1em;
  border: medium double gray;
  margin: 2em auto;
  background: lightyellow;
}
</style>
<textarea>

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

Here is the output: style-custom.html.

Note that the rendered content is displayed within a <main> element inside the <body>. That is why these elements are being styled in the above example.

Render Markdown Without MathJax

To render Markdown-only content without any mathematical content at all, use MdMe. MdMe is a fork of TeXMe that does not have the code or overhead associated with additional parsing and processing that TeXMe does to prevent the Markdown renderer from seeing mathematical content as well as the overhead of loading and running MathJax. Here is an example:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/mdme"></script><textarea>

# Atomic Theory

**Atomic theory** is a scientific theory of the nature of matter, which
states that matter is composed of discrete units called *atoms*. It
began as a philosophical concept in ancient Greece and entered the
scientific mainstream in the early 19th century when discoveries in the
field of chemistry showed that matter did indeed behave as if it were
made up of atoms.

Here is the output: mdme.html.

A similar result can be achieved in TeXMe itself by eliminating the additional overhead for math support by setting useMathJax and protectMath options to false. The code for math support would still be loaded though. Only its execution would be eliminated. Here is an example:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script>window.texme = { useMathJax: false, protectMath: false }</script>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script><textarea>

# Atomic Theory

**Atomic theory** is a scientific theory of the nature of matter, which
states that matter is composed of discrete units called *atoms*. It
began as a philosophical concept in ancient Greece and entered the
scientific mainstream in the early 19th century when discoveries in the
field of chemistry showed that matter did indeed behave as if it were
made up of atoms.

Here is the output: markdown-only.html.

Skip Automatic Rendering on Load

When TeXMe loads, it begins rendering the document automatically. This automatic rendering may be skipped by setting renderOnLoad option to false. Here is an example that disables automatic rendering and then invokes rendering later on the click of a button by using the texme.renderPage() function from the TeXMe API:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script>window.texme = { renderOnLoad: false }</script>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>
<script>
window.onload = function () {
  var button = document.getElementById('button')
  button.onclick = function () {
    button.remove()
    texme.renderPage()
  }
}
</script>
<textarea>

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

</textarea>
<div><button id="button">Render</button></div>

Here is the output: skip-render.html.

Set Options After Loading

When we load TeXMe with the <script> tag, it begins rendering the document as soon as it loads. Therefore in the above examples, we define the configuration options prior to loading TeXMe. We do this by defining an object named window.texme with the configuration options defined as properties in this project.

However if we set the renderOnLoad option to false, we prevent TeXMe from rendering the document after it loads. We now have the control to invoke the rendering at a later time, e.g., on the click of a button. In this case, it is possible to set configuration options after loading TeXMe with the texme.setOption() function. This function takes two parameters: option name as a string and option value.

Here is an example that skips automatic rendering on load and sets the style to 'plain' using this function:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<script>window.texme = { renderOnLoad: false }</script>
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/texme@0.5.0"></script>
<script>
window.onload = function () {
  var button = document.getElementById('button')
  button.onclick = function () {
    button.remove()
    texme.setOption('style', 'plain')
    texme.renderPage()
  }
}
</script>
<textarea>

# Euler's Identity

In mathematics, **Euler's identity** is the equality
$$ e^{i \pi} + 1 = 0. $$

## Explanation

Euler's identity is a special case of Euler's formula from complex
analysis, which states that for any real number $ x $,
$$ e^{ix} = \cos x + i \sin x. $$

</textarea>
<div><button id="button">Render</button></div>

Here is the output: set-options.html.

Use TeXMe as a Library

Most of the examples so far use TeXMe as a utility. These examples load TeXMe in a web page and then TeXMe automatically picks the <textarea> element containing Markdown + LaTeX code and renders it as HTML.

In this section, we see how to use TeXMe as a library and invoke its functions. These examples would run as is on Node.js.

Install TeXMe

Enter the following command to install TeXMe:

npm install texme

Render Markdown and LaTeX

Markdown + LaTeX content can be rendered to HTML by simply invoking the texme.render() function. It accepts the Markdown + LaTeX content as a string and returns the rendered HTML as a string. Here is an example:

var texme = require('texme')
var input = '**Foo** $$ {a}_{1} {a}_{2} $$'
var output = texme.render(input)
console.log(output)

The above example produces the following output:

<p><strong>Foo</strong> $$ {a}_{1} {a}_{2} $$</p>

Configuration Options

Here is a quick reference for all the supported configuration options:

  • useMathJax (true by default): Load MathJax and run it to render LaTeX when set to true. Do not load or run MathJax when set to false.

  • protectMath (true by default): Prevent Markdown renderer from seeing LaTeX code when set to true. Therefore LaTeX content that may contain text that could be interpreted as Markdown (e.g., $$ {a}_{1} {a}_{2} $$) remains intact as LaTeX when set to true. Let Markdown renderer look for Markdown text within LaTeX code and render it when set to false. For example, $$ {a}_{1} {a}_{2} $$ is rendered as <p>$$ {a}<em>{1} {a}</em>{2} $$</p> when this option is set to false.

  • style ('viewer' by default): Three values are supported: 'viewer', 'plain', and 'none'. The viewer style displays the rendered document on a white pane against a gray background. The plain style displays the content with a very minimal style that does not change the background style. If set to 'none', no style whatsoever is applied and the document is displayed with the browser's default style.

  • renderOnLoad (true by default): Begins rendering the document automatically on load when set to true. Skips rendering automatically when set to false.

  • onRenderPage (undefined by default): A callback function that is automatically invoked after TeXMe completes rendering the page. It is guaranteed that TeXMe has completed rendering the page before invoking this callback. If useMathJax option is true, it is also guaranteed that TeXMe has invoked typesetting LaTeX with MathJax before invoking this callback. However it is not guaranteed that MathJax has completed typesetting the page before this callback is invoked. MathJax typesetting occurs asynchronously and may complete after this callback is invoked. This callback runs only when the texme.renderPage() function runs in web browser either due to automatic rendering on load or due to explicit call to this function.

  • commonmarkURL (CDN URL of minified commonmark.js, i.e., commonmark.min.js, version 0.28.1 by default): URL to load commonmark.js while running in a web browser.

  • MathJaxURL (CDN URL of MathJax version 2.7.5): URL to load MathJax.js while running in a web browser.

License

This is free and open source software. You can use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of it, under the terms of the MIT License. See LICENSE.md for details.

This software is provided "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, express or implied. See LICENSE.md for details.

Support

To report bugs, suggest improvements, or ask questions, create issues.