RFC: Lazy syntax for paragraphs, blockquotes and lists

david parsons orc at pell.portland.or.us
Fri Sep 3 13:55:49 EDT 2010

On Fri, Sep 03, 2010 at 11:43:49AM +0200, Thomas Leitner wrote:

> In the beginning there was...

> =============================


> Markdown was created by John Gruber because he wanted a nice text

> format that is inspired by how email messages are written. There is a

> requirement that lines in plain text email message should not be longer

> than 78 characters and therefore many mail (transport) programs

> hard-wrap text to a specific line length.

For what it's worth I don't believe that very many (if any)
MTAs reformat messages in that way. The Sendmail milter
library interface allows filter programs to rewrite messages,
but as far as I know the extent of that rewriting is to
add, delete, or modify headers, or to do content sanitisation.

78 character line length is an artifact of ttys traditionally
being 80 columns wide, as well as an artifact of the annoying
habit of some ttys to force a newline if you write a character
into the last cell on the screen.

-david parsons

More information about the Markdown-Discuss mailing list