Content producers have come a tremendously long way for managing blobs of text. We have .text, .doc, .pdf and a wide variety of other formats we have to deal with, each tied to their own format.
Lately, I’ve been looking intently at Markdown, a text preprocessor. I’ve been trying to incorporate it into my workflow. So far, it’s been quite enjoyable. There is a zen-like appreciation for working with any text editor. The source document is legible, and the results are always predictable. I can work on any platform, and I always know the results will look the same.
Furthermore, for the ones paying attention to detail, customizable css scripts can be wrapped around the processor to get the look and feel you desire.
So long Evernote and Microsoft Office. My workflow uses nvAlt (Notational Velocity Alt) and Marked, two brilliant pieces of software by Brett Terpstra to enhance writing Markdown documents. We are no longer confined to using clunky GUIs: adjusting font sizes, colours, sizes. For programmers, the fluidity, and modularity resembles like good coding practice.
Where is this going?
Looking around the web, there is a growing trend towards great use of space to improve the reading experience. The flat blog format is starting to follow the design of magazines. Take a look at craigmod’s piece here. It is brilliant in execution. The elements do not follow conventional blogging styles, but encourages the eyes to explore up-down-left-right. Images are placed tactfully using columns, and specific elements are enlarged to put emphasis.
The one thing I’m curious is whether craig does every piece by hand, or is there a preprocessor that creates the beautiful layout. I imagine it’s possible to create a piece of software that can always create savouring formats for all.
Can this be done with markdown?
What about now?
In the end, I hope to settle down in Tumblr land for these thoughts. In the next little while, I will be playing around with the stylesheets and theme to improve markdown compatibility on this beautiful theme.