evolving the spec (was: forking Markdown.pl?)

Michel Fortin michel.fortin at michelf.com
Fri Feb 29 10:13:07 EST 2008

Le 2008-02-29 à 3:49, Yuri Takhteyev a écrit :

>> Anyway, a spec for Markdown Extra would contain a spec for Markdown

>> as

>> well, wouldn't it?


> I think the whole enterprise would be a lot more valuable, if we

> produce a combined spec, which would be self-contained, and call it

> Markdown 2.0.

I also think the Markdown Extra spec should be usable as a spec for
how to parse plain Markdown. But I'm not conviced calling it "Markdown
2.0" will make the spec much more valuable. Can we even do that
without John Gruber's blessing?

> I don't think we necessarily need a formal grammar. What we need is

> to create a document, starting with "Markdown Syntax" perhaps, throw a

> bunch of questions at it, settle on the answers, incorporate them into

> a spec. Perhaps we can use the wiki at http://markdown.infogami.com/

> for this.

I think the syntax needs to be defined unambiguously, not necessarily
as a formal grammar, but certainly not with code either. My idea,
currently, is to write a parsing procedure which is easy to read and
implement in various ways, using a formal grammar to define various
constructs of the syntax and plain english to link things together. I
also intend to keep the spec implementable as an incremental parser,
but that will require backtracking.

Michel Fortin
michel.fortin at michelf.com

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