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A dummy placeholder image
Figure 1. This figure has automatic figure numbering.

I had a feature request for automatic figure numbering, like latex. I was revamping this plugin for Pelican 3.3 anyway - and this didn’t seem too hard - so I decided to add it.

So, the Better Figures & Images plugin now supports automatic figure numbering. To enable this for all posts, just add this to your config file:

FIGURE_NUMBERS = True

If you want to enable this per post, just add this to the metadata at the top of the post:

for restructuredText add this:

:figure_numbers: true

and for Markdown add this:

figure_numbers: true
Caution:

Can you have Figures in Markdown?

I use reStructuredText for this site, and I’m not sure if you can even have Figures in Markdown documents - and I haven’t tested it, so caveat emptor.

It adds this …

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This is a Pelican plugin to calculate various statistics about a post and store them in an article.stats dictionary. You can see this in action in the sidebar on the left of this site.

Nice touch from medium.com - now available in Pelican.

I wanted to implement the nice little “X min read” thing from Medium - and it turned out that it was easy to provide a few other interesting stats at the same time, for people to use in their templates.

The returned article.stats dictionary contains the following:

  • wc: how many words
  • read_mins: how many minutes would it take to read this article, based on 250 wpm
  • word_counts: frequency count of all the words in the article; can be used for tag/word clouds
  • fi: Flesch-kincaid Index/ Reading Ease
  • fk: Flesch-kincaid Grade Level

For example:

{
    'wc': 2760,
    'fi': '65.94',
    'fk': '7.65',
    'word_counts': Counter({u …
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How Figures & Images work in Pelican, by default

By default Pelican does a great job with figures and images, thanks to built-in support in ReStructuredText [1][1] . Pelican will turn this rst input:

.. figure:: {static}/images/better-figures-images-plugin-for-pelican/dummy-200x200.png
    :align: right

    This is the caption of the figure.

    The legend consists of all elements after the caption. In this case, the legend consists of this paragraph.

into this HTML output:

<div class="figure align-right">
    <img alt="/static/images/dummy-200x200.png" src="/static/images/dummy-200x200.png" />
    <p class="caption">This is the caption of the figure.</p>
    <div class="legend">The legend consists of all elements after the caption. In this case, the legend consists of this paragraph</div>
</div>

Which, given this CSS:

/* Styles for Figures & Images */

img {
    border: 1px solid #bbb;
    border-radius: 3px;
    padding: 4px;
    float: left;
    margin: 1em …
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As I mentioned previously, this site was put together using Pelican - a static site generator, written in Python.

Blueprint style diagram showing a brown Pelican
Figure 1. Pelecanus Occidentalis - the Brown Pelican. Original clipart Flying Pelican from OpenClipart, by molumen, Public Domain. More on Pelican, the bird.

Static site generators take your content, pour it into your templates and output the result as static pre-generated HTML, CSS, JS & image files. You can then just upload the resulting folder of output to your server and you’re done. All you need on the server is a web server of some sort, like Apache or Nginx - anything really - all it’s doing is serving static pages.

The huge advantage of this setup is simplicity:

  1. You can write your content in Markdown [1], reStructuredText [2] or AsciiDoc [3] - all simple text formats, designed to facilitate writing and get out of …
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