txtimg -- A library for text-based images
Recently, I’ve been doing some translation work for a certain community on the internet. As far as I’m aware of, the community mostly lives on Twitter, and a few other niche forums.
Anyway, sometimes the translations can get pretty long, e.g. a radio or a TV broadcast.
That means, a tweetstorm would be really hard to read.
The solution people usually come up with is to write the translations in a word processor, and take screenshots of the file. So the result is something we call a “text-based image”.
I don’t really use a word processor much, and I hate taking screenshots like that. My tool of choice is a text editor like VSCode, but that looks really terrible when you take a screenshot.
Also, I’ve been toying with the idea of distributing my translations via a web service. Some translations I do aren’t of publicly available content, so the idea is to deliver the translations to only people who have paid for this exclusive content. With a web service, I could also invite other translators to the provide translations.
So I wrote some Python code! I released a library called
You can install it like this:
$ pip install txtimg
And here’s how you use it:
from txtimg import TxtImg text = """ What did Sushi A say to Sushi B? What's up B? (WASABI) """ t = TxtImg() img = t.generate_from_text(text) img.save("wasabi.png")
This is basically a thin wrapper on top of the Pillow library. Basically you can pass in a string, and it will return a Pillow image object. There are some configuration parameters that I probably should have put more thought into, but it works.
In hindsight, I could have also just used
pandoc but that might be complicated to install on a server. Or it was probably just LaTeX that was difficult to install, I can’t remember.
I’m planning to add more features to this depending on how it goes with my translating thing.
If you want to see my code repo, you can find it here: https://github.com/yoongkang/txtimg