Markdown or reStructuredText for DM?

I realise I’m swimming against the tide here, but: my fingers are wired for reStructuredText rather than Markdown. Any chance of teaching Discourse to understand that as well?

Might be easier to teach Sphinx to understand CommonMark :slight_smile:

I do know of Sphinx projects that have used Markdown, but enabling reStructuredText on Discourse wouldn’t happen without us paying to develop it (or having SQuaRE develop that plugin for Discourse). I see value in having a standard markup across DM (although Confluence/JIRA have their own weird thing), but we’d have to decide whether the investment is worth it.

There’s a natural logic to Markdown on Discourse and reST on Sphinx:

  • Markdown is simpler and easier to type quickly in the course of conversations (my opinion).
  • reST is better for docs because it’s made to be extensive. We can easily build reST plugins (really, docutils plugins) to do things like ``:rfc:`81``` and have that RFC auto-linked in the docs.

Part of the reason there are so many variants of Markdown is that John Gruber never intended for Markdown to be so extensible. This post from the Rust documentation team may illuminate the Markdown vs reST decision for docs:

You mean "extensible, not “extensive”. And if you look into the Rust stuff, you get to ASCIIdoc, which complicates things still more :smile: