I used to always be on the lookout for another, better text editor. No matter what I used, I was convinced there was something better. And it’s not like I have particularly intense requirements for a text editor. I basically want something with a running word count, a spell-check, and a way to quickly render Markdown.
But then I moved to Ubuntu 16.04 and the gedit Markdown plugin no longer work. I couldn’t find an immediate answer so I started looking at the current state of Markdown editors. And that’s when I found Remarkable. It’s a simple Markdown editor that renders Markdown live, gives a running word count, and has a spellchecker.
That’s it. And that’s why it’s perfect. It’s essentially gedit with the Markdown plugin already installed. And the live preview is much better than gedit’s, which needed to be manually updated.
I’ve been using it for a few weeks and it’s been wonderfully uneventful.
Remarkable doesn’t have many configuration options. You can choose your font and it has a variety of themes. The default setting is to have text on the left and rendering on the right. I had the opposite setup in gedit. You can swap the screens, but Remarkable doesn’t remember the next time you use it and I’ve quickly adjusted to the Remarkable default.
To activate the spellecheck, you either have to install a Python package through your repository or via pip. It was hardly a burden, but it would be nice if the instructions and/or method were available within the program, since it’s a fairly standard feature.
Interestingly, it does offer some text conversion, like converting to title case, lower case, or upper case. It’s a feature I use a few times a year, and one for which I usually pop into a word processor (because I’m too lazy to retype…)
Remarkable is very specific, although it works fine as a plain text editor, too. But if you are someone who loves to work in Markdown, you’ll find it very convenient. I’m also happy they’re working on a Windows version, since MarkdownPad 2, my Windows Markdown editor of choice, has gotten very slow (although it looks like a new version might be on the way).
Remarkable is the text editor I’ve been looking for, and, as is often the case with these things, I found it after I stopped looking. gedit is still great, but Remarkable is a better fit for my text editor usage. If you’re a regular Markdown user and you want something that gives you some convenient features without veering into becoming a full-blown word processor, Remarkable is worth a look.
What works: Simple Markdown editor with not too many features
What doesn’t work: Could use just a few more bells and whistles, like an easier way to activate the spellcheck
Who should work with it: Anyone who regularly works with Markdown