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10 May 2022 - Liblouis

Good news for those of you who are editing liblouis tables using Emacs. There is now a liblouis mode that helps by providing syntax highlighting and other helper functionality.


The mode can be installed from melpa using M-x package-install. It automatically opens all files that contain the following magic line (which most tables contain):

# liblouis: <...>

en-ueb-g1.ctb for example contains

# liblouis: Unified English Braille Code (Grade 1)


Just open a liblouis table file with Emacs and you should have syntax highlighting. Also M-x compile should run lou_checktable on the currently opened liblouis table.

There is also support for parsing the output produced by the liblouis test suite so that you can easily navigate to problems in the YAML files when using compilation-minor-mode in the test-suite.log.


The mode is not all that new. It was part of the liblouis distribution for a long time. What is new is that it has been simplified, moved to a separate repository and added to melpa, the Emacs Lisp Package Archive so that it could easily be installed from within Emacs.