Markdeep – Markdown on steroids

Markdown is of the best formats for writing documentation. It’s intuitive, cross-platform, and can be read or written without any special tools. But it does have a variety of limitations too (no includes, no special formatting for advanced things like charts or formulas, etc).

Markdeep is one of the tools that tries to extend Markdown and solve some of its limitations.

Markdeep is a technology for writing plain text documents that will look good in any web browser, whether local or remote. It supports diagrams, calendars, equations, and other features as extensions of Markdown syntax.

Markdown Here – a browser extension for quick Markdown

Markdown Here Screenshot.

Markdown Here is a browser extension (for all sorts of browsers too) that enables quick and easy rendering of the Markdown text into the HTML.  This works well in a number of scenarios – Gmail email composition, WordPress post editing, and a few other.

Using tables with Markdown in Redmine

We use Redmine for our project management needs in the office.  It works pretty well, but there are, as with anything, a few rough corners.  One thing in particular that I was trying to figure out is how to use tables in Wiki pages, issues, etc.

The official documentation says that tables are not supported and you need to use HTML.  Yuck.  I do, of course, know how to mark up tables in HTML, but that’s definitely not the most pleasant of experiences.  Especially if you need to modify them later.  So I dug deeper.

It turns out that the documentation is outdated.  Modern Redmine versions (we are on 3.3.0) use the redcarpet library for parsing Markdown, which supports tables just fine.  Here is an example of the Markdown that you can use in pretty much any textarea field:

| Header 1     | Header 2     |
| ---          | ---          |
| Row 1 Cell 1 | Row 1 Cell 2 |
| Row 2 Cell 1 | Row 2 Cell 2 |

And it’ll render as a table just fine. The dashed line separating headers should have at least 3 dashes for the parser to understand it correctly. But you can extend the dashes for the whole width of the column.