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A Quick Markdown Syntax Error Detection for Writing MathJax Equations in Octopress Posts (1)

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I write math in Octopress posts using MathJax.


I include $\rm \LaTeX$ code for mathematical expressions rendered by MathJax in Markdown source code for Octopress posts. Then I have to adapt the $\rm \LaTeX$ code for kramdown, which is a Markdown parser that converts kramdown code into HTML. For example,

  1. Add a backslash ‘\’ before an underscore \_.1
  2. Use eight backslashes to stand for a newline in displayed math equations.2

For the second item, I realized that by repeated trials.

Regeneration of the contents in this blog takes more than a minute since jekyll needs to process more than 200 pages. Therefore, a quicker way to verify the Markdown syntax helps.


  1. Write the $\rm \LaTeX$ code for the equations.
  2. Use a $\rm \LaTeX$ compiler to ensure that the code for the equations are right.
  3. Use pandoc to convert the $\rm \LaTeX$ code to Markdown.
  4. Use kramdown to convert the Markdown (i.e. kramdown) code to HTML.
  5. Copy and paste the HTML code into the <body> tag of an HTML file.
  6. Add references to MathJax and a local configuration file in the <head> tag in the HTML file.
  7. Use a web browser to preview the results.
  8. Correct the Markdown syntax, and repeat steps 4–7 if necessary, until the contents are correctly displayed.
  9. Copy the kramdown code and paste it under the YAML header in the Markdown source file for an Octopress post.

Therefore, I often excute the following editor commands in Vim.

:" returns the relative path of the file the current buffer
:echo expand('%')
:!kramdown % > %<.html
:sp %<.html

  1. See Mathjax, Kramdown and Octopress by Lucy Park. 

  2. See MathJax and RSS in Blog 1 for details.