Detab should be multi-byte aware?

Allan Odgaard 29mtuz102 at
Mon Oct 9 17:02:03 EDT 2006

A user has table-formatted data which contains accents and finds it
problematic that his tables misalign after going through Markdown.

This is because he made them align using tab characters and Markdown
will convert these to spaces even in pre-formatted text and Markdown
is not multi-byte aware.

This raises two questions:

1. Should Markdown convert tabs to spaces in pre-formated text?
2. If yes, should Markdown be aware of multi-byte characters?

I’d say yes to #1 -- Markdown converts to (X)HTML which does not
define the tab size, and a good rule of thumb is to always convert to
spaces before publishing on the net.

As for #2, Markdown doesn’t know the encoding of the source document,
so that would mean it can’t really be aware of things such as UTF-8
mb sequences, OTOH if it changes my pre-formatted text, I would like
to have it do the right thing.

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