[NTG-context] [OT] ASCII text output

Aditya Mahajan adityam at umich.edu
Wed Feb 17 20:27:53 CET 2010


Hi Roger,

On Tue, 16 Feb 2010, Roger Mason wrote:

> Aditya Mahajan <adityam at umich.edu> writes:
>
>> On Tue, 16 Feb 2010, Roger Mason wrote:
>>
>>> I need to convert an exam written in ConTeXt to an ascii text file like
>>> the following:
>>>
>>>
>>> Before I go to the trouble of creating a parser to read the ConTeXt
>>> input and write the desired output I'm wondering if this can be done
>>> with ConTeXt itself.
>>
>> Can you show a small example of the corresponding tex source?
>
> \def\mcquestionnumber{14}
>
>
> \mcquestionheader A ruby is a gem of corundum coloured by\crlf
> {$A$}: Rutile\crlf{$B$}: Calcium (Ca)\crlf{$C$}: Chromium (Cr)\crlf{$D$}: Iron (Fe) and Titanium (Ti)\crlf
>
> \mcquestionfooter

If you are willing to add more markup, then TeX can do the parsing for 
you.

\startquestion[title={Ruby coloured by}, points=1, difficulty=1]
   A ruby is a gem of corundum colored
   \startoptions
     \option Rutile
     \option Calcium
     \correctoption Chrumium
     \option Iron and Titanium
   \stopoptions
   \starthint
     ....
   \stophint
   \startfeedback
    ...
   \stopfeedback
\stopquestion

You can create a mode for ascii output that redefines all the environments 
to *typeset* the correct output, which you can then convert to text using 
pdftotext.

Another option is to write everything in XML (it is almost the same ...)
<question title="...", points=...., difficulty=...>
   <text> A ruby .. </text>
   <options>
     <option> ... </option>
     <option> ... </option>
     <option correct="yes"> ... </option>
     <option> ... </option>
   </option>
   <hint>
    ....
   </hint>
   <feedback>
    ...
   </feedback>
</question>

With a few setup commands, ConTeXt can directly typeset an xml file. 
Parsing the xml file to generate ascii text can be done using your 
favourite programming language (or using ConTeXt by typesetting the 
desired output and using pdftotext).

> And the desired output is...
>
> NewQuestion,MC,
> Title,Ruby coloured by,
> QuestionText,A ruby is a gem of corundum coloured by
> Points,1,
> Difficulty,1,
> Image,,
> Option,0,Rutile,,
> Option,0,Calcium (Ca),,
> Option,100,Chromium (Cr),,
> Option,0,Iron (Fe) and Titanium (Ti),,
> Hint,,,,
> Feedback,,,,
>
> Maybe a regexp would do, followed by a bit of hand editing, but if there
> is a way of doing this in ConTeXt that would be very convenient.

If this is something that you need to do only a few types, anything quick 
and dirty will suffice. But for the long run it makes sense to have a more 
detailed markup and then you do not need to worry about the correctness of 
the conversion.

Aditya


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