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Prabhu R
Prabhu R

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AsciidocFX: The Asciidoc Editor for documentation and authoring

For those who work extensively with Asciidoc files, having a robust and feature-rich editing tool is essential. We have already see the power of Asciidoc and Asciidoctor in our previous articles as a writer's tool and a presentation tool. In this article we will explore about AsciidocFX, an open-source toolset for creating and publishing technical documentation using AsciiDoc format is a free

AsciidocFX, is an open-source, cross-platform editor that provides an exceptional user experience and a comprehensive set of features for working with Asciidoc files. Though Asciidoctor provides these capabilities, not everyone will be comfortable enough to work in the commandline or shell setting that's where AsciidocFX comes to the rescue. Let's explore some of the key capabilities that make AsciidocFX stand out.

  • Live real-time previewing: While writing documents, authors can use live previewing to see the results of their changes immediately. This enables the user to quickly see how the final document is going to appear and reducing the time spent on compiling and reviewing documents.

  • Multi-format output: AsciidocFX allows generating various document formats such as HTML, PDF, EPUB, Mobi and DocBook based on your needs. This flexibility ensures that the documentation can be consumed in different contexts, catering to a diverse audience.

  • Epub Viewer: AsciidocFX provides an epub viewer, this allows the authors to view how the content appears as an epub book. However, this is rendered in a browser and not natively within AsciidocFX

  • Additional functionality through extensions: AsciidocFX offers advanced formatting features such as UML Diagrams, Sequence Diagrams, Mathematical Notations, File Tree representations etc through extensions that enables users to create rich and visually appealing documentation. Following is the list of popular tools supported through extensions. There are other tools that are supported by asciidoctor-diagram that is supported by AsciidocFX as well, however those tools are required to be in the PATH

    • PlantUML Diagram - Sequence diagram, Usecase diagram,Class diagram, Activity diagram etc.
    • Mermaid Diagram - Create diagrams using text and code
    • Ditaa Diagrams - Convert diagrams drawn in ascii art to bitmap graphics.
    • MathJax - Mathematical Notations expressed using Tex or MathML
    • Charts - Using JavaFX Charts Extenstion
    • File Tree - Display file tree using a text description
  • Presentation Slides: AsciidocFX provides the feature to create slides using Asciidoc like how Asciidoctor + RevealJS or Marp for Markdown. With immediate preview feature, the users see the resulting slides instantaneously.

  • Integrated File Management: The built-in file manager makes it easy to navigate and manage your Asciidoc files and projects. Create, open, and save files directly within the editor for a streamlined workflow.

  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: Last but not the least, it is cross-platform as it is written in Java and JavaFX and is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux, AsciidocFX ensures a consistent experience across multiple platforms, making it a versatile choice for users working in diverse environments.

With these great features AsciidocFX can be an indispensable tool for many use cases that includes

  • Software Documentation
  • Technical Writers preparing user manuals and technical documentation
  • Authors writing books
  • Technical materials that includes diagrams and mathematical formulae

Overall, AsciidocFX is a powerful and versatile toolset for creating and publishing documentation using the format. Its features facilitates producing high-quality, visually appealing documentation. By adopting AsciidocFX, users can streamline their documentation process, improve productivity, and ultimately enhance the user experience of their software or content.

Give it a try!

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