File Extension Consensus

Waylan Limberg waylan at
Sun Nov 7 11:04:46 EST 2010

On Sun, Nov 7, 2010 at 8:47 AM, Seumas Mac Uilleachan <seumas at> wrote:

> Since generally

> where needed the extension can be custom defined, why do we need a

> "standard" anyway?

For this reason I have been silent on this issue. [^1]

> On 06/11/10 06:59 PM, Brett wrote:


>> Here are the results from the limited data set provided. It looks like

>> 'markdown' is the winner followed by 'mdown'. Third place is a tie between

>> 'text' and 'md'.


>> If usage sets a standard, then 'markdown' is the standard.

However, I will say that standard or not, I doubt I will ever use
"markdown" as a file extension. Call me lazy if you like, but I
simply don't want to type that much every time. I prefer "txt" and if
I must use something else (for example on github) I'll use "md".

Truth be told, in many situations I see no reason for any special
designation. Docs for my projects on github are written in makdown and
all have "txt" for file extensions. Yes, they then display as plan
text. I don't care. If github some day adds a feature where they
figure out I'm using markdown and convert my docs to html, that's fine

On the other hand, while something like [Github Pages] does need to
know what markup language a document is written in, it shouldn't need
to rely on a file extension for that info. As Github Pages is just an
instance of [Jekyll] (of which there are many clones) and Jekyll
source files all require [metadata], and the metadata is always in the
same format regardless of the markup language used, then the metadata
could easily include the markup language used regardless of the file
extension. Hey, then I could use ".txt" for everything. I think I'll
go file a bug report with Jekyll.

[Github Pages]:

[^1]: I can't help but notice that the other implementors have been
silent as well. I suspect that in part it is because we have all had
this discussion before. For some, because we really don't care.And in
part, because it really doesn't matter. It's the later for me mostly.

\X/ /-\ `/ |_ /-\ |\|
Waylan Limberg

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