Thinking on Markdown

1. The Editor

I heard of Markdown for years, and tried once or twice to learn it, didn’t make it. The way that all the Editors handle Markdown: an edit mode, a preview mode, one at a time or split the window, check the result in one side when you input in another side.

It is JUST illogical

Markdown syntax is not hard, but I didn’t have good command of it until I find Typora

What make it so special is the Live Preview function, you input the Markdown syntax, when the cursor leave the AREA, voila, it renders the final result of what Markdown should look like. It’s WYSIWYG (I miss this term), it all happened in one place, I don’t need to move my eyes between two sides like a bird or whatever.

It is the silver bullet, not mention Typora is free, it supports Mac OS and Windows, it uses GitHub Flavored Markdown, it can export as HTML & PDF, et cetera.

2. Markdown

Why I like it

  • Markdown is still plain text, the syntax is neat, without a Markdown editor you can still open and read it easily.
  • Comparing to editors like MS Word, markdown only provides limited but enough formating choices, it enables me to focus on writing itself when I am … typing, instead of struggling with formating choices.
  • Generally it will be rendered as HTML, you can still control how it looks like by customizing the Editor’s CSS.

Should I be worried?

Now Markdown already has several flavors (dialects), although they only have slice differences.

3. Markdown Support

3.1 WordPress

The powerful JetPack includes a Markdown plug-in, of course it’s not the only reason you should use JetPack.

Be noticed that the Markdown flavor supported by WordPress is Markdown Extra

3.2 GitHub

Well, GitHub supports GitHub Flavored Markdown, it makes GitHub also a good place to share documents, all kinds of documents, not only documents of source code.

If the UI of GitHub seems a little bit unfriendly to your readers, you can consider using GitHub Pages to publish your content.

The thing I don’t like is that GitHub Pages doesn’t directly display Markdown files as GitHub does, It only supports kramdown flavor, and it uses Jekyll, a static website generator, to “Compile” markdown files to HTML. Yeah, things just get weirder. and there will be a learning curve.

If your document is book-like, you can use GitBook to compile it, export it as HTML, and then publish it on GitHub Pages, it’s just another idea.

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