Markdown still sucks

therealbrandonwilson  •  4 Nov 2021   •    
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When LifeLog launched, @jasonleow and I had a spirited discussion about Markdown. He was all for it, and I was complaining about the lack of a simple graphical editing interface. Now that I’ve written here for over 300 days, I can confidently say that Markdown is not for me. In fact, I’ll go so far as to say if I had to use Markdown to write my newsletter, there would be no Be Wellthy.

Aside from learning the syntax, my biggest issue with Markdown is the lack of real-time formatting. I don’t like the idea that I have to wait to publish my article to see all the formatting. Oh, that’s how big H2 header is?? Nope, need to change it. Oh and I forgot the space after the “#” which you don’t need for other commands. I also almost never type brackets, so the idea that I need to type those for a hyperlink is just one more annoyance. I am a true target of the famed WYSWYG functionality.

All the other writing tools I have used (Medium, Substack, Adagia, Writestreak) offer some graphical editor. The consequence of Markdown-only here is that my posts have minimalist formatting because I just don’t want to bother. By the way, this also makes it less likely that I share writing here because it’s not “ready for prime time.”

One good thing I can say is that I have learned a shortcut that I use all the time. I knew that I could start typing numbers and periods in Word or Outlook and it would generate a list. I did not know that I could type * and start a bulleted list. So that one I’m thankful for because it is definitely faster than selecting the bullet option from the menu.

Comments

I never got on with it either.
I am also guilty of repeatedly re-editing my posts here because I messed up the syntax somehow.
If only Jason would move to WordPress, all our problems would be resolved 😁😂 (not really)

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tao  •  4 Nov 2021, 10:12 pm

@therealbrandonwilson that’s great feedback, Brandon! Great point about realtime preview of the formatting - that’s a huge feature and something I wanna tackle soon. Never realised this might be what’s holding you back from sharing the writing here - ok that definitely got me listening!

jasonleow  •  4 Nov 2021, 11:58 pm

@tao yeah i had to re-edit pretty often too. I guessed I got (too) used to it that I didn’t realised that might be a problem! Thanks for highlighting that. Will do something about it (though def not touching WP lol!)

jasonleow  •  5 Nov 2021, 12:00 am

@jasonleow I actually edited the post to add that line about sharing in because I knew I’d had curiosity and then I’d have your attention. 😎

therealbrandonwilson  •  5 Nov 2021, 12:06 am

Hahah you know your audience Brandon! Thanks for considering it from my pov.

Let me see if I can at least add a Markdown preview quickly as a stop gap first, if the WYSIWYG formatter is too much of a task at the moment. I’ll move some stuff around on the roadmap.

jasonleow  •  5 Nov 2021, 12:49 am