Revisiting Markdown Editors

One of the tools I use every day is a Markdown editor. But what editor to use? A quick Google search will give you a list of markdown editors. For many reasons, I write my blog entries for work in Markdown, then convert them to HTML. Allow me to share my process.

Image Source: Joplin

Writing in Markdown

If you haven't used Markdown, it's a simple way of adding special characters in front of words. Add a single # and you get a heading 1. Add two # and you get a heading 2. It's a quick and easy way to write. Now, while most of my blog entries start in Hemingway Editor, I always export the product to Markdown then import into a markdown editor for further editing and image/video embedding.

Here are some of my current favorite Markdown editors:
  • StackEdit - This is a web add-on or app you can install on your browser or computer. What I like about it is that you can flip to full-screen with the editor, then turn on preview. It also offers split-screen view of markdown and formatted content. What's really neat is that it's easy to sync your files to Google Drive, Dropbox, GitHub account. This means you prob won't lose access to your files. I've literally worked on my Windows 10 machine, switched to GNU/Linux (an old Dell) and continued working without missing a beat.
  • Mark Text - Another of my favorites although I uninstalled it after going with StackEdit. 
  • Typora - I started with this one because, like Mark Text, it features copy-n-paste conversion of MarkDown to HTML. 
In spite of these wonderful tools, I most often rely on Hemingway Editor app to do my writing, then save it as markdown file.

That Markdown file gets imported into StackEdit if I want to spend more time editing it, then gets copied into Joplin.  A little about Joplin, if you haven't played around with it:
Joplin is a free, open source note taking and to-do application, which can handle a large number of notes organised into notebooks. The notes are searchable, can be copied, tagged and modified either from the applications directly or from your own text editor. The notes are in Markdown format. Three types of applications are available: for the desktop (Windows, macOS and Linux), for mobile (Android and iOS) and for terminal (Windows, macOS, Linux and FreeBSD). All applications have similar user interfaces and can synchronise with each other.
Joplin works great, however, it lacks the easy synchronization that StackEdit enjoys. Still, Joplin is my go-to archive (backup) for my other blog's entries. ;-)

Once I'm ready to put that content into Wordpress, I convert it to HTML from Markdown and then insert any images. At the end, I convert it from HTML to Markdown and make a backup in Joplin.

On reading this process, I wonder at how many steps I take. The process works for me. Each step in the process allows me to refine my writing. 

Have you explored Markdown, and what role does it play in your own work, if at all?

Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure


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