on the philosophical aspects of a specification

John Fraser john at attacklab.net
Wed Mar 5 21:11:56 EST 2008

On Mar 5, 2008, at 2:40 PM, Waylan Limberg wrote:

> On Wed, Mar 5, 2008 at 1:46 PM, Vinay Augustine <vinay at case.edu>

> wrote:


>>> * no spaces - level 1

>>> * 4 spaces - level 2

>>> * 6 spaces - level 3

>>> * 2 spaces - level 1.5 ???


>> With the rule just proposed, wouldn't the last line simply be level

>> 2?

>> I think this rule has the bonus of being obvious. If it doesn't do

>> what someone expects, they can look at what they wrote and say "oh,

>> as

>> long as I indent more than the previous level, it will make a

>> sub-list." (of course, that could just be obvious since we're talking

>> about it).



> To me that is not at all obvious. If it were to work as you propose,

> then the spec needs to specifically indicate that that is the expected

> behavior.


> Perhaps the reason this is *not* obvious to me is that I have a

> relatively strong background coding python. In python code, whitespace

> is significant. In fact, with few exceptions indentation is the only

> way to indicate nesting. The above nesting would **break** at compile

> time in python code. This is a "feature" and considered a "good thing"

> by most python users.

Maybe down the road it'll be worth building something like a Markdown-
lint, so we can warn users when they do wacky stuff like this. But it
absolutely shouldn't be part of Markdown itself; we just need to do
the best we can with the input we've got. And personally, I think
having that last item be level 2 is pretty reasonable. That's how I'd
read it.

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