There are a few blog posts you can find about using the Atom code editor as a Markdown writing program. Just recently I put Atom on a new machine — and since each time I have to re-learn how to set it up, so this time I’m making some notes.
Installing plugins with APM
I had trouble installing the plugins sometimes due to a Self Signed certificate error. You can get around this by using an unsecured connection to the Atom servers, by using this command:
apm config set strict-ssl false
Once this is set up plugins can be installed. I use the command
apm install <package-name>
(note that on OSX to get the apm command on the command line you just need to go to the menu Atom > Install Shell Commands; then you can use the apm command in the terminal)
Packages for Markdown in Atom
Here is my list of packages I added to Atom and why:
|Package||What it does|
|markdown-writer||generally handy markdown writing tools|
|markdown-table-editor||really useful tool for automatically generating markdown tables|
|atom-folding||(needed for markdown-folding)|
|folding-markdown||allows you to fold markdown headings (toggle in the gutter next to headings)|
|center-editor||centers the text. I don’t like this package as much as typewriter but this may work better for you|
|typewriter||very good for full screen editing; puts text in the centre of the screen, toggle gutter and scroll bar on/off|
|typewriter-scroll||fixes the insert point in the middle of the screen for writing|
|highlight-line||highlights the line you’re editing|
|pandoc||needed for pandoc-convert|
|pandoc-convert||package for converting from markdown to other file formats. I’ve used this outside Atom, not yet tried it as the package|
|project-manager||tool for marking folders as projects. I’ve only used it a bit.|
|dracula-ui||nice set of colours for UI based on Dracula|
|dracula-syntax||syntax highlighting in Dracula colours|
Here’s an example of folding. Text:
Folded at heading:
In the Atom settings (access by
ctrl+,) I do the following:
- Disable the wrap-guide package. This removes the vertical bar at the preferred line length (probably useful for code but not for writing).
- Set the soft wrap and soft wrap at preferred line length option checkboxes.
- I also disabled the autocompletion-plus package to stop the editor suggesting spellings as a type.
Hope this is useful to someone. There are a few other posts on users’ setups around the internet (e.g. this one).