Maruku: a better Markdown interpreter for Ruby.

John Gruber gruber at
Thu Dec 28 16:00:23 EST 2006

Andrea Censi <andrea at> wrote on 12/27/06 at 7:11 PM:

> Maruku implements the original Markdown syntax and all the

> improvements in PHP Markdown Extra. Moreover, it implements some ideas

> from MultiMarkdown, and adds a syntax for specifying metadata for

> block elements.

Maruku looks very nice overall, but I have one comment and one


If you're going to support syntax extensions like PHP Markdown
Extra's and MultiMarkdown's, you shouldn't call Maruku a Markdown
interpreter. By default, "Markdown" should mean Markdown. I know
there are a few features that I haven't yet officially added which
almost everyone (including me) wants, especially tables. And I
know it's been a long time since Markdown 1.0 shipped.

But there's a huge benefit to having "Markdown", as a syntax, be
as consistent as possible across implementations. Someone who
knows Markdown shouldn't have to worry about "which" Markdown
implementation they're using.

In Maruku's case, I would prefer to see its default mode translate
only the official Markdown syntax, and to handle its syntax
additions as options.

It's also the case that whatever the features are that will be
added to the official Markdown syntax, there will be many other
features that will not be added. Everyone is welcome to add their
own pet features to their own implementations, but these features
should not be added as though they're part of Markdown itself.

The way Michel Fortin has handled this with PHP Markdown is ideal.


Have you benchmarked Maruku against BlueCloth? If so, how does it


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