Retarded Markdown

Markdown qua Markdown has been retarded since birth (or slightly thereafter). In that sense it is kind of a dwarf or a little person. That is, it can do some things, but not the kind of workload required of the fully grown. People make a big deal out of Markdown not being broken, and it certainly isn't, when taken at face value and measured at the level of a dwarf. But we need more grown up and developed markup in the modern world, and all the grafted-on appendages will not due. Hence the proliferation of Markdown extensions. People call these flavors, and they are certainly enhancements to make Markdown taste better (or really, become more functional). But this grafting on of limbs always has the feeling of personal modifications and the result a beauty contest between Frankenstein monsters.

Recent Developments in Markdown

Interestingly, there are two significant developments in Markdown, a more-fully-specified Markdown syntax called Common Markdown and an IETF/APPSAWG Markdown media type draft. Both represented long-needed steps forward, Gruber be damned. CommonMark has both C and Javascript implementations of Markdown as well.

These changes are significant in that, text/markdown can be recognized as a media type, that is a label for content, such as that transported via HTTP/HTTPS.

So better, let's start with a plan, not to operate on the small historical body of markdown, but to see it as a single species in a world of evolution, and to learn better and more from its better adapted cousins. Namely: TeX/LaTeX/XeLaTeX, HTML, and ePub (a form of HTML). For this is where we have come

  • Example of simple need to extend markdown but with the incessant rejoinders that extending it makes it not markdown

Epub and HTML

stuff here...

TeX, LaTeX, XeLaTeX

stuff here...


Note that GitBook now has Kramdown

Markup for Publishers = MarkPub

What we have are several standards that we use, as well as specific needs (publishing, though that could be considered to be quite broad). And so, we can produce a markup which can be used in these cases (and possibly others).

There are several limitations of retarded markdown vis-a-vis html which make for an easy target, specifically the use of CSS classes.

Math Issues

MathJax (see StackEditor implementation) vs. MathML vs. other such...


Some text1. Final bit of text for the paragraph.

Some more text, another paragraph here.

![This is the figure caption][fig_id]

[fig_id]: http://mmd.png "This is where the title goes" height=45px width=120px

To strike-through text:

This is is a test. This is {--is --}a test. This is is a test.

To add text:

This a test. This {++is ++}a test. This is a test.

to change text:

This isn't a test. This {~~isn't~>is~~} a test. This is a test.

to add comments:

This is a test{>>What is it a test of?<<}.

This is a test.


This is a test.

This is a test.

Markdown Postings on

Previous Postings on Markdown Editors

  1. Here is the text of the footnote