Styling Markdown approaches

Sherwood Botsford sgbotsford at
Fri Apr 19 17:00:51 EDT 2013

A good reply. You almost convince me.

But at least with it being done by configuration, I can either ship the
config file with the MD file, or I can manually change my config to match
the sender's config. This is a bunch easier than installing a whole new
version of MD and it's support structure because of a different fork.

That particular cat is out of the bag, however, and we have a score of
implementations. From all apparent discussion here, there is no particular
urge for the writers to get together to reduce the implementations. So we
have 20 document formats already. And not all the implementers are
concerned with backward compatibility.

The same can be said of html and CSS. CSS configures how the html is
rendered. So CMD could configure the way MD is rendered.

So steal a page from html/css: config can be inband or it can included
from an external file.


Sherwood of Sherwood's Forests

Sherwood Botsford
Sherwood's Forests --
50042 Range Rd 31
Warburg, Alberta T0C 2T0

On 19 April 2013 13:29, Aristotle Pagaltzis <pagaltzis at> wrote:

> * Sherwood Botsford <sgbotsford at> [2013-04-19 16:05]:

> > * Aristotle Pagaltzis <pagaltzis at> [2013-04-19 13:30]:

> > > * Sherwood Botsford <sgbotsford at> [2013-04-18 17:20]:

> > > > (I wish that this was a toggle that could be set in a .mmdrc file.

> > > > There are a lot of things that I wish I could set in an .mmdrc file.)

> > >

> > > That would be bad for Markdown.

> >

> > Why?

> >

> > Most reasonably powerful unix commands have some combination of

> > command line or startup files to control behavior.


> Because Markdown is a document format, not a Unix command.


> > At the present stage when someone wants something new, they have to

> > fork their least unfavorite version, and tweak it to their purpose.


> Exactly. Every time you make a processor handle a Markdown document

> differently from how a different Markdown processor handles it, even

> just by changing an option in some hypothetical config file, you are

> forking Markdown.


> Consider then what happens if after writing 300 Markdown documents using

> one setting for some option, you decide that you prefer to use another

> setting.


> Now you have 300 broken Markdown documents.


> Not to mention, you can’t exchange Markdown documents with anyone else

> very well, because their documents look wrong under your configuration

> and your documents wrong under theirs.


> If you did want to be able to configure how a Markdown document gets

> processed, then the only reasonable place to keep that configuration

> would be in-band, within the document itself, so that the document will

> remain self-describing; rather than out of band somewhere it can become

> separated or divergent from its document.


> Had you had to put your settings within each of these 300 documents,

> bloat though one might feel it is, they would all continue to render

> correctly, both for others and for your own future selves.


> In that sense, while the markdown="1" attribute may be less than great,

> when compared to a setting in a configuration file, it is still a far

> superior design.


> Regards,

> --

> Aristotle Pagaltzis // <>

> _______________________________________________

> Markdown-Discuss mailing list

> Markdown-Discuss at



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