Bowerbird | 7 Jul 22:11 2011
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writing tools that use light-markup

let's talk about writing tools that use markdown
(or more broadly, another form of light-markup)...

to begin with, there is the markdown "dingus"...

from a demo perspective, it has been _fantastic_.
it has provided interested observers a quick idea
about the simplicity and the power of markdown.

as a writing tool, it's a bit clunky; it will work, yes,
but i'd doubt many people are using it regularly...
as an additional concern, it's badly hobbled by the
limited nature of markdown as gruber pictures it.

i know michel has a dingus as well, but his seems
to be limited to a relatively small amount of text;
thus, it doesn't work adequately as a writing tool.
(the same problem plagues the babelmark page.)
also, the dingus doesn't support the latest version,
so it's still lagging somewhat in the "power" arena.

as far as i know, these are the only web-based tools.
(i've built a dingus for z.m.l., but i don't promote it.)

if you know of any others, i'd love to hear about 'em.
(it'd be sweet if google docs supported light markup.)

***

jumping over to the app side, things get fractured...

in addition to the usual mac/windows segmentation,
we now have an ios/mac gulf as well.  there's also a
distinction amongst apps that can utilize "the cloud",
and therefore straddle our prior app/web distinction.

there are many text-editors -- probably any of 'em --
which can utilize markdown as a service.  most of you
probably use textmate or bbedit, because you're geeks.
more power to you, dudes, but i'd doubt your mothers
would use your particular solution, so it doesn't count.
i love mothers, since they _are_ in my target audience.

by far the most interesting category these days is ios,
especially when coupled with a cloud-based solution.

iawriter is getting a lot of attention.  i'm not sure why,
since its overall write-one-line-at-a-time premise is
myopic to the point of stupid, but that's hype for you.
also, iawriter uses a "reduced" form of markdown, one
which only supports headlines, lists, and blockquotes,
so the label has been marketed down to almost zilch.

i'm using an app called "nocs", which i find adequate.
nocs works very nicely with dropbox, so that's neat...
nocs uses "discount", which i am given to understand
is the only (or easiest?) library for ios.  if you are one
of the developers of the other variants of markdown,
i'd guess you might fret about competing against ios.

just to share my own experience, i find that i can write
(and rewrite) quite nicely on the ipad, thank you kindly.
(that line about it being "only for consumption" is bull.)
especially with a hardware keyboard, writing is a breeze.

which is not to say nocs uses the (limited) screen-space
wisely -- it doesn't.  i'd love to have a split-screen view,
half for editing, the rest for rendering the .html output.

(but at least nocs _will_ render its .html output for me;
iawriter isn't that "fancy" yet, assuming it ever will be.)

there are probably a dozen more ipad apps for writing
that use markdown, but those are the two that i know of.

these ipad apps dovetail an established desktop trend
favoring "distraction-free" writing environments, like
writeroom or ommwrite.  who coulda seen that ascetic
would be the new aesthetic?  the problem with _some_
of these desktop apps (which've been ported to ipad) is
they "settle" for plain-text as their output, rather than
utilizing light-markup to up the quality of that output.
it's also the case that some still lack full cloud support.
another problem is some of 'em are not on windows...
but i guess this flaw will dwindle as windows dwindles.
(can you believe we starting saying that 15 years ago?
sometimes the tenacity of mediocrity just amazes me.)

finally, the notion that .html output is sufficient is one
that is increasingly being called into question.  there is,
of course, a long history for .pdf.  i find it quite amusing
that many markdown developers consider it adequate to
distribute product in .pdf form.  it's surprisingly hard to
track down the multi-markdown manual qua markdown,
but the .pdf version is presented up front on the website.
and that recent paper, on syntax highlighting on-the-fly,
was distributed as a .pdf, with no markdown file in sight.

one of the best arguments for light-markup is that .pdf is
"a roach motel" where text goes in, but cannot come out,
not without having its formatting significantly mangled...
and .html is only slightly better, in terms of remixability.

light-markup -- which can be easily repurposed as well as
converted into whatever form the recipient might like -- is
obviously the best way to distribute documents to the world.

but how do you expect the world to come to understand that
if light-markup people themselves don't use this capability?

at any rate, in our world, even .html and .pdf aren't enough,
because we now have kindles and ipads which want e-books
in the form of .mobi and .epub files.  (both of these formats
_suck_goats_, by the way, if compared to light-markup files,
but the technocrats who devised those formats were _idiots_,
and, for the immediate present at least, we're stuck with 'em.)

so ideally we want a program that will produce e-book output,
as well as .html and .pdf.  and it should be cross-platform too,
not just for windows and the mac, but also mobile platforms...

and mostly, coming full circle, it should have the qualities of
the dingus, in communicating quickly and easily the _appeal_
of light-markup, in terms of its _simplicity_ and its _power_...

how about you?  what do you think?  anyone using scrivener?
or how about afkwriter, has anybody here tried out that beta?

-bowerbird
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Alan Hogan | 7 Jul 22:33 2011

Re: writing tools that use light-markup

I personally worked on Simplenote’s web app’s integration of Markdown, and would be remiss not to mention that.

It is light as an editor, with only tab key support keeping it ahead of a plain vanilla text editor.  But your documents can be previewed nearly instantly. (You must mark the note as Markdown formatted via the Note Info dialog first.)

http://simplenoteapp.com/

Two other neat things about it: 

1. You can publish your note publicly (URLs like http://simp.ly/publish/<random>), and Markdown-formatted notes are published as HTML. Kind of a lightweight way to publish & update a web page.

2. Simplenote of course syncs with iOS so said notes can be edited on the go. However the iOS client does not support Markdown preview.

Simplenote’s Markdown supports loads of the “Extra” syntax, thanks to markdown-python.

(Note you must register to use the editor.)

Alan Hogan

http://blogic.com
contact <at> alanhogan.com

On Thursday, July 7, 2011 at 1:11 PM, Bowerbird <at> aol.com wrote:

let's talk about writing tools that use markdown
(or more broadly, another form of light-markup)...

to begin with, there is the markdown "dingus"...

from a demo perspective, it has been _fantastic_.
it has provided interested observers a quick idea
about the simplicity and the power of markdown.

as a writing tool, it's a bit clunky; it will work, yes,
but i'd doubt many people are using it regularly...
as an additional concern, it's badly hobbled by the
limited nature of markdown as gruber pictures it.

i know michel has a dingus as well, but his seems
to be limited to a relatively small amount of text;
thus, it doesn't work adequately as a writing tool.
(the same problem plagues the babelmark page.)
also, the dingus doesn't support the latest version,
so it's still lagging somewhat in the "power" arena.

as far as i know, these are the only web-based tools.
(i've built a dingus for z.m.l., but i don't promote it.)

if you know of any others, i'd love to hear about 'em.
(it'd be sweet if google docs supported light markup.)

***

jumping over to the app side, things get fractured...

in addition to the usual mac/windows segmentation,
we now have an ios/mac gulf as well.  there's also a
distinction amongst apps that can utilize "the cloud",
and therefore straddle our prior app/web distinction.

there are many text-editors -- probably any of 'em --
which can utilize markdown as a service.  most of you
probably use textmate or bbedit, because you're geeks.
more power to you, dudes, but i'd doubt your mothers
would use your particular solution, so it doesn't count.
i love mothers, since they _are_ in my target audience.

by far the most interesting category these days is ios,
especially when coupled with a cloud-based solution.

iawriter is getting a lot of attention.  i'm not sure why,
since its overall write-one-line-at-a-time premise is
myopic to the point of stupid, but that's hype for you.
also, iawriter uses a "reduced" form of markdown, one
which only supports headlines, lists, and blockquotes,
so the label has been marketed down to almost zilch.

i'm using an app called "nocs", which i find adequate.
nocs works very nicely with dropbox, so that's neat...
nocs uses "discount", which i am given to understand
is the only (or easiest?) library for ios.  if you are one
of the developers of the other variants of markdown,
i'd guess you might fret about competing against ios.

just to share my own experience, i find that i can write
(and rewrite) quite nicely on the ipad, thank you kindly.
(that line about it being "only for consumption" is bull.)
especially with a hardware keyboard, writing is a breeze.

which is not to say nocs uses the (limited) screen-space
wisely -- it doesn't.  i'd love to have a split-screen view,
half for editing, the rest for rendering the .html output.

(but at least nocs _will_ render its .html output for me;
iawriter isn't that "fancy" yet, assuming it ever will be.)

there are probably a dozen more ipad apps for writing
that use markdown, but those are the two that i know of.

these ipad apps dovetail an established desktop trend
favoring "distraction-free" writing environments, like
writeroom or ommwrite.  who coulda seen that ascetic
would be the new aesthetic?  the problem with _some_
of these desktop apps (which've been ported to ipad) is
they "settle" for plain-text as their output, rather than
utilizing light-markup to up the quality of that output.
it's also the case that some still lack full cloud support.
another problem is some of 'em are not on windows...
but i guess this flaw will dwindle as windows dwindles.
(can you believe we starting saying that 15 years ago?
sometimes the tenacity of mediocrity just amazes me.)

finally, the notion that .html output is sufficient is one
that is increasingly being called into question.  there is,
of course, a long history for .pdf.  i find it quite amusing
that many markdown developers consider it adequate to
distribute product in .pdf form.  it's surprisingly hard to
track down the multi-markdown manual qua markdown,
but the .pdf version is presented up front on the website.
and that recent paper, on syntax highlighting on-the-fly,
was distributed as a .pdf, with no markdown file in sight.

one of the best arguments for light-markup is that .pdf is
"a roach motel" where text goes in, but cannot come out,
not without having its formatting significantly mangled...
and .html is only slightly better, in terms of remixability.

light-markup -- which can be easily repurposed as well as
converted into whatever form the recipient might like -- is
obviously the best way to distribute documents to the world.

but how do you expect the world to come to understand that
if light-markup people themselves don't use this capability?

at any rate, in our world, even .html and .pdf aren't enough,
because we now have kindles and ipads which want e-books
in the form of .mobi and .epub files.  (both of these formats
_suck_goats_, by the way, if compared to light-markup files,
but the technocrats who devised those formats were _idiots_,
and, for the immediate present at least, we're stuck with 'em.)

so ideally we want a program that will produce e-book output,
as well as .html and .pdf.  and it should be cross-platform too,
not just for windows and the mac, but also mobile platforms...

and mostly, coming full circle, it should have the qualities of
the dingus, in communicating quickly and easily the _appeal_
of light-markup, in terms of its _simplicity_ and its _power_...

how about you?  what do you think?  anyone using scrivener?
or how about afkwriter, has anybody here tried out that beta?

-bowerbird
_______________________________________________
Markdown-Discuss mailing list
Markdown-Discuss <at> six.pairlist.net
http://six.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/markdown-discuss

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Markdown-Discuss <at> six.pairlist.net
http://six.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/markdown-discuss
Alan Hogan | 7 Jul 22:35 2011

Re: writing tools that use light-markup

Two more things I want to mention in this discussion:

1. Markdown syntax highlighting in TextMate is somewhat useful.

2. StackOverflow uses a bastard markdown (no line break ignoring, no raw HTML allowed), but their editor includes some buttons reminiscent of BBCode or MetaWiki syntax editors, for bolding and such actions.

I would like to see a lot more of #2… Anyone know of other helpful interactive Markdown editors?
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Rob McBroom | 8 Jul 14:57 2011

Re: writing tools that use light-markup

On Jul 7, 2011, at 4:35 PM, Alan Hogan wrote:

> Anyone know of other helpful interactive Markdown editors?

http://hashify.me/ from David Chambers has some of this. Not sure which “extras” are available in
Showdown (if any).

--

-- 
Rob McBroom
<http://www.skurfer.com/>
Eric Weir | 8 Jul 15:33 2011
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Fwd: [MMD] MMD-Edit is progressing nicely



Begin forwarded message:

Date: July 6, 2011 10:38:33 PM EDT
Subject: [MMD] MMD-Edit is progressing nicely

MMD-Edit is progressing nicely

07/06/2011 22:31:22

I am continuing work on my text editor for the Mac, MMD-Edit. It’s based on work described in another post, but briefly it performs syntax highlighting of MultiMarkdown syntax.

Additionally, it now calculates tabstops to make the metadata and tables look better. To take advantage of this, you need a tab between the metadata key and the value, and a leading tab at the beginning of each line for any values that span multiple lines.

As for tables, you can insert a space before the ‘|’ cell divider.

The feature is still pretty basic, and will likely cause your computer to explode on any but the simplest of tables (it doesn’t handle cells that span more than one column, for example). But it’s a start!

You can download a copy or find out more:

https://github.com/fletcher/MMD-Edit/downloads

Note: I renamed the project, so old URL’s won’t work…

http://fletcherpenney.net/2011/07/mmd-edit_is_progressing_nicely.html


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Fletcher T. Penney | 8 Jul 17:06 2011
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Re: [MMD] MMD-Edit is progressing nicely

For those who are interested:

1) Definitely pre-release software - it works pretty reliably, but it's not pretty

2) There is a toggle box that switches from MMD to plain Markdown syntax for those who do not use MMD

3) It doesn't do printing.

4) To customize it you have to edit the source (no preferences)


F-


On Jul 8, 2011, at 9:33 AM, Eric Weir wrote:



Begin forwarded message:

Date: July 6, 2011 10:38:33 PM EDT
Subject: [MMD] MMD-Edit is progressing nicely

MMD-Edit is progressing nicely

07/06/2011 22:31:22

I am continuing work on my text editor for the Mac, MMD-Edit. It’s based on work described in another post, but briefly it performs syntax highlighting of MultiMarkdown syntax.

Additionally, it now calculates tabstops to make the metadata and tables look better. To take advantage of this, you need a tab between the metadata key and the value, and a leading tab at the beginning of each line for any values that span multiple lines.

As for tables, you can insert a space before the ‘|’ cell divider.

The feature is still pretty basic, and will likely cause your computer to explode on any but the simplest of tables (it doesn’t handle cells that span more than one column, for example). But it’s a start!

You can download a copy or find out more:

https://github.com/fletcher/MMD-Edit/downloads

Note: I renamed the project, so old URL’s won’t work…

http://fletcherpenney.net/2011/07/mmd-edit_is_progressing_nicely.html


--
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "MultiMarkdown Discussion List" group.
To post to this group, send email to multimarkdown <at> googlegroups.com.
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to multimarkdown+unsubscribe <at> googlegroups.com.
For more options, visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/multimarkdown?hl=en.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eric Weir
Decatur, GA  USA




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Christoph Freitag | 8 Jul 18:07 2011
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Re: writing tools that use light-markup

Look at iA Writer by infomationarchitects.jp

--

-- 
Christoph Freitag
M: +49 160 3694661

Am 08.07.2011 um 17:06 schrieb markdown-discuss-request <at> six.pairlist.net:

> writing tools that use light-markup
David Chambers | 8 Jul 18:11 2011
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Re: writing tools that use light-markup

Not sure which “extras” are available in Showdown (if any).

My Showdown fork is now significantly different from John Fraser's version. It's extensible, and so far I've created two extensions.

If you're interested, have a look at the annotated source code:
David


On 8 July 2011 05:57, Rob McBroom <mailinglist0 <at> skurfer.com> wrote:
On Jul 7, 2011, at 4:35 PM, Alan Hogan wrote:

> Anyone know of other helpful interactive Markdown editors?


http://hashify.me/ from David Chambers has some of this. Not sure which “extras” are available in Showdown (if any).

--
Rob McBroom
<http://www.skurfer.com/>

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Bowerbird | 8 Jul 23:33 2011
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re: writing tools that use light-markup

christoph said:
>   Look at iA Writer by infomationarchitects.jp

i did.  i am unimpressed, to say the least.

i will note one redeeming quality, which is that
tim o'reilly gave it a blurb, saying that he didn't
know how he lived without a text editor till now.
so it gets a brownie point for that enlightenment.

equally boggling is a blurb from erik spiekermann.

nevertheless, i remain unimpressed.  sorry.

***

>   https://github.com/fletcher/MMD-Edit/downloads

i get no preview...  presumably because i do not
have multimarkdown installed...  however, i also
assume that won't be required on actual release.

***

rob said:
>   http://hashify.me/
>   from David Chambers has some of this.

very impressive.  clean-looking, and super-fast,
and it handled the test-suite which i threw at it...

based on showdown, which i also admired greatly.

it seemed unable to generate a u.r.l. for the suite,
likely because it was "too big" (albeit a mere 25k),
and "view source" provided me with no .html, but
i assume the tool is doing what it's supposed to do
in its young life, and such improvements will follow.

meanwhile, it was able to handle mini-files:
>   http://bit.ly/qrMVLy
>   http://bit.ly/n8AOQQ

does anyone have a suggestion for a test-suite?

***

so no one here looked at afkwriter?  it's fairly good,
in its beta form.  but i haven't heard any news on it.

-bowerbird
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Egil Hansen | 13 Jul 10:12 2011
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php-markdown-extra-extended - my humble attempt at extending php-markdown

Dear all,

I have used Markdown via Drupal a few months now, with a customer site
and my currently my own blog and based on that practical experience I
wanted to add some extra functionality to PHP Markdown Extra, so out
of this grow my (extended) weekend project
https://github.com/egil/php-markdown-extra-extended

The big missing item right now that I would like to implement is the
ability to add classes to block and span elements. My basic idea is to
use a syntax like this: {some class}

I have been playing with some basic ideas for the syntax in this file
but it is far from done:
https://github.com/egil/php-markdown-extra-extended/blob/master/demo/notes/class-syntax-tests.txt

I have looked through some of the archives on the mailing list, and
have not seen this discussed before, so would love some input.

In general, any input on my extension to PHP Markdown is welcome. This
project is also a chance for me to practice regex (my regex-fu is
weak), so please keep the regex-mocking to a minimum; I know it will
be hard :)

Thanks, Egil.

Gmane