Universal syntax for Markdown

David Chambers david.chambers.05 at gmail.com
Wed Aug 10 16:29:36 EDT 2011

Every other language I use on a daily basis (Python, JavaScript,
CoffeeScript, HTML, CSS, and heck, even English) is evolving. CoffeeScript *
1.1.2*, ECMAScript *5*, HTML*5*, CSS*3*… I'm seeing a pattern. ;)

I don't understand why a significant number of people in this community feel
that Markdown is a special case and that each of us should be responsible
for extending it as we see fit. This is similar to the state of JavaScript
in 2005 or so. Those using JavaScript at the time demanded convenience
methods such as `Array::each` and `String::trim` so extended these global
objects themselves (or used Prototype). The problem with this approach is
that one person's `Array::each` is not necessary interoperable with
another's. I'm *much* happier with the state of JavaScript today, now that
the language is incorporating the things we've been doing for years.


On 10 August 2011 12:14, Alan Hogan <alanhogan at gmail.com> wrote:


> > Hi,

> >

> > because of the great editor "Writer" from Information Architects I've

> > learned about Markdown and I love it. But it's very confusing, that

> > there are so many standards with different features: classical

> > Markdown, Markdown Extra, MultiMarkdown. I think for most users and

> > the spreading of Markdown it would be nice, to have only one syntax.

> >

> > And this universal syntax should have the additions of MultiMarkdown:

> > footnotes, tables, definition lists, citation, metadata (author,

> > title, date), and so on... Because I think many people would like to

> > have these additional functions in Markdown. And who doesn't need

> > these additional functions, simply doesn't use them.

> >

> > I think, one universal Markdown-syntax with the additional

> > possibilities of MultiMarkdown would be less confusing for consumers

> > and would help to spread Markdown in more apps and to more users.

> > Because it's really great!


> Flo, I completely agree with you. It's absurd.


> There are two steps to evolution: Mutation and natural selection. With

> Markdown we see more mutation than selection, though MultiMarkdown and PHP

> Markdown Extra do seem to be "selected" more than other mutations.


> There are those of us in the Markdown community who hope for some sort of

> official, largely-universial "version 2" of some sort (whatever it's

> called). Unfortunately this desire is far from universal.


> Alan

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