Tools Roundup - November 17, 2021

by: Scott Nesbitt

Welcome to this edition of an irregular series of roundups that look at plain text tools I’ve found interesting but haven’t explored in depth. Let’s dive in!


Putting together a small, simple web page or website doesn’t need to involve using a bulky content management system or a framework. You don’t even need to code in HTML, either. All you need to know is a little Markdown and imml does the rest.

imml, which you can use on the web or at the command line on your computer takes a file formatted with Markdown and converts it into a decent-looking web page. You can even create a multiple page site, all using a single file.


Want to take notes and/or keep a journal on your phone while embracing your inner geek a little? Then you might want to check out GitJournal.

It’s an Android app that uses git (a version control system that coders use) to store what you create. Once you hook GitJournal into whatever instance of git you’re using, it’s easy to write up daily journal entries or jot down notes. GitJournal supports Markdown, too.

(I’ll be taking a closer look at GitJournal in an upcoming article.)


It’s not an application. Instead, Calendar.txt is a simple, clever way to keep track of appointments, events, and the like using a plain text file.

Using Calendar.txt is shockingly simple. Download the calendar template (which is set up dates), open it in a text editor, and add to it. The file is small and you can share it between your computers and devices using your sync tool of choice.


I can’t tell you how many open source projects started life as a way to solve a problem their creators were facing. Left is one of those projects. It was developed to address the twin problems of using older hardware and living on a sailboat with a limited supply of electricity.

Left is a simple, useful distraction-free editor. It’s designed for writing longer-form documents — books, long essays, tracts. Anything broken into discrete sections. If you format what you’re working on using Markdown, Left generates a table of contents that lets you quickly jump to a section. It also has some nifty features like autocompletion and the ability to select a word’s synonym.