A GUI for Metapost?

English: Three examples of metapost output
English: Three examples of metapost output (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have sort-of abandoned my Apple Air Book for serious work this last week – going back to a 2008/9 Toshiba laptop (another Morgan Computers purchase) running Linux.

The Apple is a lovely device to travel with and is beautiful, if extremely expensive, device with which to browse the web, but a decade of conditioning to Linux and its command-line power and orthogonal tool set means I am much happier even with a slower machine when it comes to doing things like drawing figures with Metapost.

But having extolled the power of the command line I am wondering whether I should build a GUI for Metapost – essentially an editor panel coupled with a EPS display panel.

Metapost users seem thin on the ground – though maybe that is because a GUI tool doesn’t exist – but anyone who does use it care to comment?

3 thoughts on “A GUI for Metapost?

  1. I’m not a MetaPost user (I prefer TiKZ/PGF), but what about using an existing program that exports MetaPost code (Dia comes to mind) and then manually tweaking the code if necessary? I thought about doing a GUI for TiKZ and ultimately decided to use the Dia -> PGF route for diagrams and to use R with tikzDevice driver for plots.

  2. Yes, I suppose I could have gone that way, though I’ve started writing the code now, so I will see where it takes me 🙂 – to be honest I am not planning to do more than write wrappers around existing code (eg mplib for MetaPost and something for EPS output). Though part of me worries that I am using this as a reasonably sophisticated form of procrastination on the PhD.

  3. It’s too soon to be procrastinating; that comes about midway through the dissertation writing process.

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