I have received an offer to blog about developing on a certain platform. I don't have the particulars specifying what blogging software is used to host/admin the blog yet. However I want to start drafting my content in the interim because I have some free time. My question is a bit nuanced because I'm not looking for a blogging platform per se, but rather I am looking for a tool that will allow me to upload my text/pictures and it will format it in a blog-like fashion.

Are there any tools out there like this? Here are the things important to me

  1. Is free
  2. Is extremely light weight
  3. Convention over configuration (I dont want to format anything really, just want to upload and have it look ok)
  4. Easily exportable (either to HTML or possible to some other standard)
  5. I don't care if it's just a tool that spits out the html / I dont care if it's not a server (IE no one is going to have access to the content yet - I just want to start developing it)
  6. Ideally it would be OSS
  • I use the static site generator Hugo and host it on netlify.com. There are many other such products and hosters. Just look up "Static Site Generator"
    – knb
    Commented Mar 12, 2018 at 9:01

2 Answers 2


How about reStructuredText?

  1. It's free.
  2. It's a pretty complex markup language under the hood, but still just a text-based, mostly human-readable markup language. Markdown is simpler (about as simple as you can get short of writing HTML by hand), but lacks some features you might reasonably want for a blog like tables and custom spans or blocks.
  3. You don't have to configure anything to get started. There are sensible defaults.
  4. You can convert it to lots of other formats with Docutils as well as other software like Pandoc.
  5. It is indeed just a tool that spits out the HTML.
  6. Docutils is free software (mostly public-domain).

What about https://tiddlywiki.com ?

It is not a dedicated blogging software but it can certainly function as one.

  • You can write in either local flavor of wikitext or markdown.
  • Can be exported as original markup, markdown, json or rendered to static html.
  • Great organization features with comprehensive tag system, extensible with scripting.
  • Can be used locally offline, in a local server, or remotely over the internet.
  • Free and open source.

Good part is that eventually if you want to use it as final blogging solution you actually can.

Either just upload a local copy of the TiddlyWiki HTML file, pre-render it to a static HTML site, or setup a Node.js server to serve the original content.

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