Incremental parser

Michel Fortin michel.fortin at
Tue Sep 4 10:17:47 EDT 2007

Le 2007-09-03 à 10:45, Jacob Rus a écrit :

> Erm... wrong by what standard?

There's no standard for judging about these things, only many views
and possible compromises.

Basically, I think Markdown (the syntax) is wrong when the syntax
does not reflect what the author indented by what he wrote. We can't
get it right every time, but we should make sure the various features
are unlikely to be triggered by accident, and that even when they are
the author isn't too confused about it and has an easy way out.

When I say *I think* something is wrong, it means that in my view we
aren't following these directions. Note that it's an opinion and a
jugement of mine, not a fact. You're entirely free to disagree.

> This seems like an awfully fine line you're walking here.

> Basically you're saying John Gruber's official syntax description

> is "wrong" about intra-word emphasis, because you say so (even

> though such a change undoubtedly breaks some existing markdown

> documents, including some of mine incidentally)

I'm not against intra-word emphasis; I'm against intra-word emphasis
using underscores.

PHP Markdown Extra still does support intra-word emphasis using
asterisks. In the few years Extra has been out, I got positive
feedback about that and never heard someone complain. That, of
course, doesn't mean absolutely no one is inconvenienced by it, but
I'd guess given the feedback I received that it pleased much more
than it deceived.

Even then, I don't think we should do a parser that does change
Markdown's definition of emphasis and call it "Markdown", not without
John Gruber's blessing. That's why PHP Markdown -- which implements
plain Markdown, not a derivative -- still does support intra-word
emphasis with underscores even though it'd be trivial to change the

Michel Fortin
michel.fortin at

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