quick post on markdown in markdown: letting go of the formatting

At the opening

markdown and workflow

Now that NV and loads of other iPad and Mac apps support markdown, I’d be best learning to use it. The syntax is nothing new (except that link tag), but what is new is how to move from a markdown editor to, for instance, a weblog.

Looks like writers format using markdown in whatever app they like to write in (NVAlt, IA writer, whatever). They then move the html code generated by the markdown app to their publishing space. Some copy and paste, others email and open. Here for instance, Chase moves from Scrivener to TextMate. He basically just writes in markdown

because it’s so simple to get used to and can be converted to HTML in a click or two. I highly recommend getting familiar with markdown if your a blogger or digital note taker.

fletcherpenny starts in OmniOutliner, and moves towards markdown. Why?

I really enjoy the benefits of being able to create one master source document, with minimal, easy-to-remember formatting, and then being able to use it to create a wide range of final document types. For me, this is much easier than having multiple versions of the same document, and having to hand synchronize them. Additionally, I like the fact that I can write a complex document without paying much attention to formatting, and then let LaTeX fix it up into a nicely formatted pdf.

Rob McBroom wrote an app to convert from markdown to html. He also draws on a tool that renders to pdf.

As more apps include the ability to work with markdown, it’s becoming more and more useful to learn it – and to teach it as general markup language rather than html or xml. An additional aspect of markdown is getting a sense of how composition – and to an extent, design – is separable from production. Markdown can deepen the separation of text from formatting – for good or ill, I guess.

Dairingfireball is the source for markdown.

Looks like my workflow of choice will start in DevonThink. For blogging I would move in MarsEdit or directly into WP. For the wiki, a copy and paste will do it. For moving to rtf or formatting into Pages – I’ll need to look into that. And, of course, this post was written in markdown in NValt, copied and pasted into MarsEdit, uploaded to WP. And while writing in markdown is easy, working directly in MarsEdit can be even easier. It’s a matter of sitting down and working.

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