You tell mom that you want to use the document processing macros with the START macro, explained below. After START, mom determines the appearance of text following the markup tags automatically, although you, the user, can easily change how mom interprets the tags. This gives you nearly complete control over document design. In addition, the typesetting macros, in combination with document processing, let you meet all sorts of typesetting needs that just can't be covered by "one macro fits all" markup tags.
How to input mom's macros
Regardless of which way you use mom, the
I cannot recommend highly enough that you use an editor that lets you write syntax highlighting rules for mom's macros and inline escapes. I use the vi clone called elvis, and find it a pure joy in this regard. Simply colourizing macros and inlines to half-intensity can be enough to make text stand out clearly from formatting commands.
.SUBTITLE "An In-Depth Consideration of the \ Implications of Forty-Two as the Meaning of Life, \ The Universe, and Everything"
.TITLE "My Pulitzer Novel" .AUTHOR "Joe Blow" .CHAPTER 1 \# .DOCTYPE CHAPTER .PRINTSTYLE TYPESET \# .FAM P .PT_SIZE 10 .LS 12 \# .START
groff -mom -l <filename> groff -mom <filename> | lprIn the first, the -l option to groff tells groff to send the output to your printer. In the second, you're doing the same thing, except you're telling groff to pipe the output to your printer. Basically, they're the same thing. The only advantage to the second is that your system may be set up to use something other than lpr as your print command, in which case, you can replace lpr with whatever is appropriate to your box.
Sadly, it is well beyond the scope of this manual to tell you how to set up a printing system. See the README file for minimum requirements to run groff with mom.
NOTE FOR ADVANCED USERS: I've sporadically had groff
choke on perfectly innocent sourced files within mom
documents. You'll know you have this problem when groff complains that
it can't find the sourced file even when you can plainly see that the
file exists, and that you've given
.so the right path and
name. Should this happen, pass groff the
-U (unsafe mode)
option along with the other options you require. Theoretically, you
.open, .opena, .pso, .sy,
.pi, however reality seems, at times, to dictate
How to preview documents
Other than printing out hard copy, there are two well-established
methods for previewing your work. Both assume you have a working
Groff itself comes with a quick and dirty previewer called gxditview. Invoke it with
groff -X -mom filenameIt's not particularly pretty, doesn't have many navigation options, requires a lot of work if you want to use other than the "standard" groff PostScript fonts, and occasionally has difficulty accurately reproducing some of mom's macro effects (smartquotes and leaders come to mind). What it does have going for it is that it's fast and doesn't gobble up system resources.
A surer way to preview documents is with gv (ghostview). This involves processing documents with groff, and directing the output to a PostScript file, like this,
groff -mom filename > filename.psthen opening .ps file in gv.
While that may sound like a lot of work, I've set up my editor (elvis) to do it for me. Whenever I'm working on a document that needs previewing/checking, I fire up gv with the "Watch File" option turned on. To look at the file, I tell elvis to process it (with groff) and send it to a temporary file (groff -mom filename > filename.ps), then open the file inside gv. Ever after, when I want to look at any changes I make, I simply tell elvis to work his magic again. The Watch File option in gv registers that the file has changed, and automatically loads the new version. Voilą! --instant previewing.