#mdbook #scientific #equation

bin+lib mdbook-scientific

Enables inline equations for mdbook to set by $..$ signs and $$..$$

4 releases

0.5.0-beta.3 Jan 17, 2023
0.5.0-beta.2 Dec 13, 2022
0.2.2 Sep 26, 2022
0.2.1 Sep 23, 2022

#1023 in Text processing

GPL-3.0 license

1.5K SLoC

Scientific mdbook plugin

This plugin adds functionality to mdbook for scientific application.

It allows the writer to generate named LaTeX, named Gnuplots and supports bibtex files. Further cross-referencing in text to equation, figures or literature is possible. A sample output can be seen here.


Compile this crate and add the mdbook-scientific to your search path. Also bib2xhtml is required if you want to generate a bibliography. Then add the following to your book.toml:

renderer = ["html"]

bibliography = "literature.bib"
bib2xhtml = "/home/lorenz/Documents/tmp/bib2xhtml/"

assets = "src/"

additional-css = ["src/scientific.css"]


  • Formulae and general latex rendering latex and dvisvgm
  • Graphs require gnuplot


For block equation rendering use the following syntax

$$equation, <name>

the equation identifier is only needed if you want to name the equation block. You can cross-reference it then with $ref:equ:<name>$ in the whole mdbook.

The same syntax is working with latex and gnuplot figures, both are requiring a subtitle for the plot. Further a gnuplotonly figure only uses Gnuplot to render the file to SVG.

Example for gnuplot rendering

$$gnuplot, <name>, <subtitle>

and then cross-reference with $ref:fig:<name>$.

If block is empty, then the preprocessor looks into the assets path specified in the configuration. So for a block $$latex, legendrepoly, Legendre Polynomials$$ it looks for the file src/legendrepoly.tex.

The BibTeX file referenced in the configuration file is added as a additional chapter and citations can be generated with $ref:bib:<name>$.

Stability / Viability

Proof of concept, with the following outstanding urgent todos for practical viability:

  • handle $ signs in code blocks
  • migrate to a full markdown parser rather than impl heuristics
  • remove dependencies on host binaries as much as possible


~445K SLoC