markdown is not good enough! the tools aren't there for non-devs and there's no concordance on moving forward *compatibly* for anything other than headers and __possibly__ lists.

md has been around for years and still no consensus on comments, meta data, css, data imports, etc.

i could never in good faith recommend to a non-dev to use markdown, even though every academic and professional writer from legal to journalism should exclusively be using markdown to write and store their documents. the data portability and ease of search, retrieval, collection, distribution, etc of markdown compared to pdf or docx is enormous. markdown is the hex format of text, the perfect layer of data and visual so that the user and the computer can both operate on text as blocks of data rather than weirdly styled paragraphs that need to be reformatted BY HAND for citation-style or journal format, or paper size. FOR EACH SUBMISSION. Academics literally rewrite their 100-page papers to accommodate up to 10 different submission requirements.

They could be clicking MLA vs Chicago and/or using a journal's stylesheet to recompile for its styles.

Today there is some support from zotero et al to take away some of the pain, but it makes ZERO SENSE for writers to have to keep and store and keep up to date, multiple versions of the same document. Git pull does not exist for them. But the worst part is that git isnt the solution to their problem. They need a compiler more than they need version control. But they also desperately need vcs. They ALL literally have a million files named "dumdum.dumFINAL-3084_lastversion \2020, this one.dum".

They dont have git or anything like it, because they need a line-by-line solution like markdown for git to become effective.

All of writing is basically mired in the fact that people cant even roll up their paragraphs and see what the fuck it is theyre saying. Most writing reads like a long scroll through some nonsense that goes nowhere. Like this rant. but the point is that markdown and line-by line editing actually produces more logically sound writing. You start to think in terms of defining ideas in blocks, ... like code.

  • 4
    Have you heard about LaTeX?
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    @sbiewald yea, cant really say its an elegant solution to the average user. It also lacks a great deal of markdown's inherent readability, portability, compatibility, storability, searchablity, retrievability, etc.
  • 4
    Markdown isn't suited for anything else than simple readme files, and even then it runs into the problem of multiple incompatible dialects.

    It will never be good for complex documents like academic writing. LaTeX does suck, but that's how something non-WYSIWYG looks when it actually solves the problem.
  • 0
    The best of both worlds is the org-mode format. Syntax as simple as markdown but with more features and latex support.

    And there's only one specification instead of 42 different varieties and parsers.
  • 1
    There's an actual standard for SOME things now in the form of CommonMark.
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    Whenever me encounters auto markdown, me wanna smash.

    Like Hulk smash.

    Keyboard in face and painful body parts smash.

    I think it was the last time in Jira... It completely fucked up the intentional formatting and for whatever reason I couldn't get it to work.

    And yes. i'm used to plaintext and ascii graphics.... Whenever some text form starts behaving weird (bold text, strikethrough, sudden bullet points...) I have this song of alestorm in my head: Fuck you lil wanker with an anchor... (Abbreviated)
  • 2
    Markdown is good for quick one-pagers and that is it.
  • 0
    Or even better, use LaTex in markdown. The best of the both worlds
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    @AvyChanna that's not part of the standard though. Gitlab can't even handle normal references with their readme parser, so LaTeX is probably too exotic for most tools.
  • 0
    In case someone is trying to bring some Markdown files to non-devs, I'd like to suggest using typora.
    It brings good tooling for PDF export, LaTeX math etc.
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