[OS X TeX] Pandoc

Rob Rye rowenrye at gmail.com
Sun Feb 27 00:09:24 CET 2011

On Feb 26, 2011, at 7:04 AM, Alain Schremmer wrote:

> Has anyone had experience with Pandoc? <http://johnmacfarlane.net/pandoc/>
> I just found out about it: "If you need to convert files from one markup format into another, pandoc is your swiss-army knife. [...] Pandoc is free software, released under the GPL. © 2006–2011 John MacFarlane."
> I tried it on the site and it was impressive enough that I wanted to download it to give it a real try BUT:
>> Pandoc is in the MacPorts, Debian, Ubuntu, Slackware, Arch, Fedora, NetBSD, and FreeBSD ports repositories. Note that the version of pandoc in these repositories may not be the most recent. There is also a Windows installer.
>> If an up-to-date package is not available for your system, an excellent way to install the latest release of pandoc is to install the Haskell platform on your system, then use the cabal tool:
>> cabal update
>> cabal install pandoc
>> This will download and compile pandoc and all of its dependencies. If you want syntax highlighting support, add the flag -fhighlighting. If you do not want to install the wrapper script markdown2pdf, add -f-wrappers.
> So, it is not for me but since there have been threads about conversion, I thought I might mention it.


Your note regarding pandoc intrigued me. I would love to have such a tool at my fingertips. I have downloaded and installed everything and run an extremely simple test converting a brain dead simple .tex article file to a .html file. The conversion looked fine, but I have no idea how well things will go if I push it with more complex files.. When I get time to do so, I intend to report on its efficacy. As noted in the original post, pandoc does appear to be extremely versatile, what I don't yet know is whether each sort of conversion is also extremely finicky. 

For those interested in trying it out, it is remarkably simple to install the Haskell platform and to then install pandoc. The Haskell Platform, is available for download at:


The pair of .dmg packages that comprise the download will install everything you need to have in place in order to download and install pandoc (following the commands copied above). Note that documentation for other modes of installation for the Haskell platform (e.g. installing GHC, etc. piecemeal) indicated that XCode was required for GHC...

Iif you want to have pandoc "globally" available you will need to use

cabal install --global pandoc

This will put pandoc in /usr/local/bin. Otherwise the executable will end up on ~/.cabal/bin and you will need that folder in your path to be able to use pandoc.

I will stop for now for fear I may be straying off-topic for this list, but, I the threads Alain mentioned suggest I am not the only one with interest in being able to convert .tex files into other formats for various and sundry reasons. 



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