Markdown is a simplified markup language, which was designed by John Gruber and Aaron Swartz. One goal of Markdown is that already the initial shape without further conversion is easy to read. Therefore mainly labeling modes were used as markup elements that are common in Plain Text and e- mails. Other markup languages ​​with similar goals for readability - as reStructuredText or Textile - had an influence on the syntax.

The Markdown conversion software converts text to valid XHTML and W3C compliant. The reference implementation in Perl under a BSD- style license. Further, since in the most common implementations of programming languages ​​such as C ( for example ), PHP (for example ), Python (for example ), Go ( for example ) or JavaScript (for example ) is available. As a markup language Markdown is used in content management systems.

Writing Examples

For the award of text Markdown mainly used punctuation and allows in some cases several equivalent methods. Characters that are usually understood as the format commands can use a backslash (backslash) masked ( ignored ) are. For example, an asterisk ( " Asterisk ", "* " ) is interpreted at the beginning of the line as a bullet; did you really an asterisk, passing it with a backslash: "\ *".

Authors can use them when needed for more complex awards XHTML - block elements. These elements are taken over by the conversion software with no change in the target document. This makes it possible to format the document into regions ordinary XHTML.

An empty line creates a paragraph.

An empty line creates a paragraph.

Create a new line.

Create a new line.

* Another item in an unordered list * A subitem, indented by four spaces * Instead * function also or -

  • A point in an unordered list
  • Another item in an unordered list A subitem, indented by four spaces

2 Another point, with no sequence is important, but only arbitrary and even double digits 3 Another point

# # # # Heading into Level 4

====================== Heading into Level 2 ----------------------

This quote is packed in an HTML blockquote element.


There are several extensions and improvements of Markdown that extend the limited possibilities.

In October 2012, a standardization of Markdown was excited.