Sequential search-and-replace text on iOS

The problem: I’m a journalist; I write for the web. I write in Markdown, and until last month I exclusively finished my stories on the Mac. I’d often start them and make good progress on the iPad or even the iPhone, but I usually wrote on the Mac, and always used the Mac to put the final polish on the stories and enter them into the company CMS

A big part of my job is attending conferences, where I do interviews and write up articles about presentations and panel discussions. (Examples here and here). Last month I started leaving my MacBook Pro in the hotel room during the day, and taking notes and writing on the iPad, and it has worked very well indeed.

Except for one problem: When I finish writing my articles, I need to convert to HTML. Not just that; I have to use my employer’s particular STYLE of HTML. No HTML artifacts, just use punctuation marks. No smart quotes, dumb quotes only. Use target=“new” on links. Long dashes use double-hyphens instead.

On the Mac, I just run Markdown through TextSoap, using a simple formula I created myself, which converts the Markdown and does a series of sequential search-and-replacements on the resulting HTML, to get it ready to upload.

However, I’ve been unable to find an equivalent utility on the iPad. Any suggestions?

How about Textastic?

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I’ll look into it. Wish they had try-before-you-buy. Five minutes of downloading and poking through settings could resolve the question.

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The main ways to get GREP on iOS were Textastic and Coda, but Coda was discontinued. Now Textastic is the go-to.

1Writer for iOS lets you do Javascript automation. A number of journalists use this as a main writing app on iOS. I think Jason Snell has used it for years (along with Editorial and Drafts).

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I’m using Ulysses for writing and taking notes on the iPad and Mac.