This output format is used an intermediate step in automatic ID from title, that unlike the regular HTML output does not have any tags.
It does not have serious applications to end users. We decided to expose it from the CLI mostly for fun, as it posed no extra work at all as it is treated internally exactly like any other conversion format.
For example, converting:
idoutput format produces simply:
instead of the HTML output:
This conversion type is useful in situations that users don't expect conversion to produce any HTML tags. For example, you could create a header:
and then following the automatic ID from title algorithm, that header would have the more commonly desired ID
= My \i[asdf]
my-asdf, and not
Besides being more intuitive, this conversion also guarantees greater format portability, in case we ever decide to support other output formats besides HTML!
idoutput format also serves as a good start generalizing OurBigBook to multiple outputs, as this is a simple format.