This a simple little tool I made while converting my Measuring Spoons project to html. I started out by using PanDoc in the hopes that it could take my pdf or odt file and produce a perfect html replication. That, of course, did not work, and I started fixing up most of it by hand. I didn't know how to go about the LaTeX, though, so I took a look at how PanDoc had tried it. They used img tags where the src was followed by some random looking string. So I googled it, and found Code Cog's LaTex equation editor. I didn't really want to have to ask another website to load my images for me, so I started messing around with it to see if I could just download the files myself. It didn't take long to figure out what string you needed to tack on to the end of that first address to get the desired equation. So I wrote a python script that would take a list of LaTeX equations, convert them into the right format, tack on a bit for the color and to say if it's display or inline, and then download the generated image from the url. Also, I switched from png to svg because vector graphics rule.

I think it's pretty neat, because unlike some other projects I've done, this is a tool that I actually couldn't find anywhere else. I've built things myself for the practice, or because I thought it would be fun, but this is the first time I followed the pipeline of "Oh, I need this tool for this project" to "Can't find it anywhere, let me make it myself." And I think it's got the best chance of being useful to someone else out of anything I've made so far. So if you find yourself in need of displaying lots of LaTeX equations on your website and want to host the svg files locally, this might be just the tool you need.

Tags: Programming, Website