Good news for RestructuredText fans!

This short note describes Tp-Note's new internal markup rendering feature.

In essence, Tp-Note is a note taking template system and as such it is Markup language agnostic. Its default templates mostly deal with the YAML header (the meta data) of new notes - and contain, with one exception, no Markup language specific code at all. This is why changing the Markup language boils down to change only 2 lines in Tp-Note's configuration file. After creating a new note, Tp-Notes opens the users favourite text editor. Today, most modern text editors can render lightweight markup, so for most people there is no need for a second rendering engine while they edit their notes.

The situation is different when you do not want to edit the note file, but instead just view its content in order to follow some hyperlink to the web. This is where Tp-Note's internal viewer comes into play: after opening the file editor, it continues watching the file and renders its content to HTML. The HTML rendition is then displayed with the user's default web browser.

From version v1.8.0 on, Tp-Note's built in viewer can render Markdown. It uses the pulldown-cmark library which is well tested, feature complete and 100% compliant with the CommonMark spec.

In addition, version v1.8.4 gets a new renderer: RestructuredText encoded notes are rendered with another library called rst. This library is also written in Rust, but compared to its Markdown counterpart, it is still in an early state: although many features are not implemented yet, the basic markup with hyperlinks is stable and works well.

For those who are not so familiar with RestructuredText, there is a speciality to mention: compared to Markdown, RestructuredText has a very strict syntax and is very picky about it. This can be annoying at the beginning, but once you got used to it, you will appreciate its well thought and aesthetic design. Tp-Note's live viewer helps you to get the syntax right by providing immediate feedback as soon as the *.rst note file changes on disk. In this context it is useful to know that most text editors provide a shortcut for updating the file on disk with the key combination: [Ctrl]+[S].

Update 14.11.2020: Version Tp-Note v1.8.6 comes with a workaround for issue 30 and additional Windows registry entries, altogether improving the user experience when dealing with *.rst files.

Read more

A good start is Tp-Note's project page, the introductory video or other blog posts about Tp-Note. The source code is available on GitHub - getreu/tp-note and some binaries and packages for Linux, Windows and Mac can be found here. To fully profit of Tp-note, I recommend reading Tp-Note's user manual. When you like Tp-Note, you probably soon want to customize it. How to do so, is explained in Tp-Note's manual page.