0.2.1 • Public • Published

    # SciGen.js

    NPM version Node CI Gitter

    This project brings SciGen to JavaScript, both for Node and for the browser.

    Try it here!



    import { scigen, scigenSave } from "scigen";
    const files = scigen({
      authors: ["Jeremy Stribling", "Max Krohn", "Dan Aguayo"],
      useBibtex: false,
    // this returns an object of file names and contents
    // or, to directly save the files to an actual directory:
      directory: "mydir",
      authors: undefined,
      useBibtex: true,

    Command Line

    $ git clone --depth 1 && cd scigen
    $ node lib/cli.js --help
    Usage: node cli.js --save [<directory>] [--authors "<author1>, <author2>, ..."] [--bibinlatex] [--silent]
        directory   all files (.tex, .eps, .cls, .bib, ...) will be saved here
        authors     list of the authors in the paper
        useBibtex   use Bibtex for formatting the bibliography (disable this for use with texlive.js)
        silent      skip info logging
    $ node lib/cli.js --save tmp --authors "Jeremy Stribling, Max Krohn, Dan Aguayo" --silent
    $ cd tmp
    $ pdflatex -interaction=nonstopmode paper.tex
    $ bibtex paper.aux
    $ pdflatex -interaction=nonstopmode paper.tex
    $ pdflatex -interaction=nonstopmode paper.tex
    $ xdg-open paper.pdf


    $ git clone && cd scigen
    $ npx webpack
    $ python -m http.server -d docs
    $ xdg-open http://localhost:8000

    For the detailed setup with TexLive.js, have a look at the docs folder, where the demo is contained. See also the TexLive.js Wiki.

    Rule Compilation

    The almost original rule files from the original SciGen project are found in rules/rules-original. They can be compiled to JSON by running perl rules/ The JSON files are required for running the module. They are already included in the module and only need to be re-compiled for applying changes in the original .in rule files.


    • src includes the main source code, written in ES2016.
    • lib is a transpilation of this source code to standard JavaScript. Use this for running and importing the module locally. It is also the code for the NPM module.
    • rules includes the context-free grammar to create the papers:
      • rules/rules-original contains the .in rules from the original SciGen project, only very slightly modified.
      • rules/rules-compiled contains the rules compiled to JSON. They can be compiled to JSON by running perl rules/ The JSON files are required for running the module.
    • docs does not contain the documentation but a working example of using the module in the browser. It uses TexLive.js.
      • docs/bundle.js is the browser code for the module. It is created from the src directory by running npx webpack.
      • docs/precompiled-figures is a dirty workaround for the figures (see limitations).


    • Bibtex is not available for the browser (cf. here). An almost perfect workaround is implemented for the parameter --bibinlatex (or setting the second/third function parameter to true in Node, see the above examples).
    • Rendering diagrams and figures requires Ghostscript in the original SciGen project. Ghostscript is not available for the browser.
      • A good workaround would probably involve rewriting the original EPS rules in some format which is supported by TexLive.js (maybe SVG or TIKZ). As this module is aimed at the browser, the diagram and figure code production is not yet implemented in the JavaScript code.
      • A current, bad workaround is implemented in docs/index.html, where some out of 50 pre-compiled figures are loaded from docs/precompiled-figures. However, for an obscure reason Latex treats the diagrams differently than the other figures and layouts them in a very weird way. So diagrams are currently left out completely, which is very unsatisfactory.
      • For locally producing TEX and PDF files with figures and diagrams, use the original SciGen project with this unmerged fix or run git clone && cd scigen/scigen-perl && perl
    • Works in Firefox Desktop & Mobile and in Chrome Mobile, but not in Chrome/Chromium Desktop. Cf. this issue with TexLive.js.


    The server-side code at the original SciGen website appears to be broken. The aim of this project is therefore to provide a more server-independent implementation.

    Also interesting

    Here's an interesting paper on the topic of scientific fake text generators.

    • Guillaume Cabanac, Cyril Labbé, Alexander Magazinov. Tortured phrases: A dubious writing style emerging in science. Evidence of critical issues affecting established journals. 2021. [arXiv]


    npm i scigen

    DownloadsWeekly Downloads






    Unpacked Size

    768 kB

    Total Files


    Last publish


    • davidpomerenke