The world needs a good, sane in-browser editing component, one that edits document structure (headings, lists, quotes etc) rather than format (font, size etc). I’ve been thinking for a while that an editing component based around Markdown (or Commonmark) would be just the thing. Markdown/Commonmark is effectively a spec for the minimal sensible markup set for documents, it’s more than adequate for articles, theses, reports etc. And it can be extended with document semantics.
Anyway, there’s a crowdfunding campaign going on for an editor called ProseMirror that does just that, and promises collaborative editing as well. It’s beta quality but looks promising, I chipped in 50 Euros to try to get it over the line to be released as open source.
The author says:
Who I am
There’s a lot to like with this editor - it has a nice floating toolbar that pops up at the right of the paragraph, with a couple of non-quite-standard behaviours that just might catch on. Mostly works, but has some really obvious
bugs usability issues , like when I try to make a nested list it makes commonmark like this:
* List item * List item * * List item
And it even renders the two bullets side by side in the HTML view. Even thought that is apparently supported by commonmark, for a prose editor it’s just wrong. Nobody means two bullets unless they’re up to no good, typographically speaking.
The editor should do the thing you almost certainly mean. Something like:
* List item * List item * List item
But, if that stuff gets cleaned up then this will be perfect for producing Scholarly Markdown, and Scholarly HTML. The $84 AUD means I’ll get priority on a reporting a bug, assuming it reaches its funding goal.