ReText: A Text Editor with Support for reStructuredText and Markdown

Dmitri Popov

Productivity Sauce

Nov 24, 2011 GMT
Dmitri Popov

ReText is a nifty text editor for those who appreciate markup systems like reStructuredText and Markdown. The application allows you to easily create formatted texts using either reStructuredText or Markdown markups, and then output the result in several formats including ODF, PDF, and HTML. In addition to that, you can upload formatted documents to Google Docs directly from within the editor. ReText boasts other handy features, including HTML syntax highlighting, auto save option, and support for CSS styles. The editor sports a tabbed interface, so you can manage multiple text files, while the Preview pane lets you view the formatted output of the currently edited file. The Tags and Symbols drop-down lists allow you to quickly insert often-used HTML tags and symbols like em dash, right and left arrows, dot, etc. Like any text editor worth its salt, ReText supports a simple find feature as well as undo and redo operations. The only missing piece here is the lack of word count and line numbering features.

ReText is written in Python, and the text editor requires no installation. However, it depends on a handful of packages, including python-qt4, python-markdown, python-docutils, and python-gdata. These packages are available in the software repositories of most mainstream Linux distributions, so you can easily install them using your distro's package manager. Grab then the latest release of ReText and unpack the downloaded archive. Make the file in the resulting directory executable using the chmod +x command, and launch the editor by running the ./ command (or double-click on the file in the file manager).

Users of Ubuntu-based distributions can install ReText via a dedicated PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mitya57/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install retext


  • Using Markdown as an input for Slideshow - s6 and s9

    Eric Meyer's S5 slideshow has evolved into S6 and even S9 which can takes a slideshow in markdown format and display it using only CSS and some javascript - can retext integrate with S6 or S9 and output a slideshow?
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