Universal syntax for Markdown

Florian Sperlich flo.sperlich at googlemail.com
Sun Aug 14 05:08:44 EDT 2011

2011/8/11 Fletcher T. Penney <fletcher at fletcherpenney.net>:

> This is not the first time that the call has gone out for "one Markdown variant to rule them all" to be developed.  I've even written, and then deleted, such a call myself.  IMHO, the fatal flaw is that those of us capable and inclined to create a derivative of Markdown to scratch our own itch are happy with the variant we have created.  We don't see a problem.  We added what we needed, and we're content.


> In the final analysis, it doesn't matter to me if the other authors of Markdown variants follow my syntax or not.  They have their own goals, needs, and opinions that don't necessarily match mine.  If you think that Markdown works best for you - great, stick with it.  If MultiMarkdown offers features that you find useful, use it.  If something else is better, by all means go with it.

My basic thought is about a general syntax. The things behind the
scenes for exporting to different formats are the one thing (although
it's nice to export to LaTeX, PDF,...). But what is more important in
my opinion is a uniform standard for the syntax that includes
footnotes, tables, definition lists, metadata, citations, images,...
Of course, there are people who will never use footnotes or tables.
But who doesn't use it, doesn't have to learn it. It doesn't make the
standard-syntax more complicated or texts with only the
standard-syntax more confusing. But those people that need these
things (e.g. students, lecturers, scientists,...) can use these

And I think a standardized syntax for all these things (and that there
are not different versions of Markdown) is very important - standards
are always important, because so everybody can use the syntax on any
other system that uses Markdown. And (maybe even more important)
everybody can read and edit the documents of others.

Best regards,

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