The most basic formatting is leaving a blank line to start a new paragraph. For short posts containing only words, this is usually all you need. However, more advanced formatting is available. Formatting can be done directly by adding HTML elements, and/or with Markdown.
The pages you see are ultimately in HTML. Arbitrary HTML can't be allowed because that could break lots of things. However, a certain subset is specifically allowed to provide some control over formatting without giving you the capability to break the larger page.
HTML tags start with <name> and usually end with </name>. Whatever you put between the starting and ending part gets effected by that tag.
The allowed tags are:
- <a href="URL">text</a>
Makes text a clickable link. Clicking goes to URL.
- <img src="URL">
Inserts the image at URL in-line.
Starts a new paragraph. The ending </p> is allowed but usually not required.
- <b>text</b>, <strong>text</strong>
Writes the text in bold --> b-text, strong-text
Writes the text in italics --> i-text, em-text
Draws a horizontal line.
- <h1>text</h1> ...
Headings, with weight 1 to 6. Weight 1 is a top level heading, with the remaining numbers successively more subordinate:
Shows the text in a separate block, visually set off from the surrounding text. Use this to show text that you are quoting from elsewhere:
Four score and seven years ago, not much of any significance happened. This is more rambling to show how long text is wrapped. Blah, blah, blah.
Writes text with a line thru it to show that it is crossed out or deleted:
Writes the text in-line in fixed space font:
In-line code text -->
In-line code text<-- In-line code text.
Writes a block of text in fixed space font. Use this for source code to keep it from getting wrapped and formatted to oblivion:
begin level := TankLevel(sludge.tank); thresh := sludge.thresh_high; if EpaInspector then begin thresh := sludge.thresh_legal; end; if level > thresh then begin PumpOn (sludge); end;
Inserts a "break" in flowed text. The following text starts on a new line.
- <ol> ... </ol>,
<ul> ... </ul>
Lists. OL (ordered list) creates a numbered list. Each entry will have a successive number. UL (unordered list) just puts a bullet in front of each list entry.
Add list entries with the LI (list item) tag, below.
Starts a new entry in the current list. This works for both numbered (OL) and unnumbered (UL) lists.
Writes text as a superscript --> P = I2R
Writes text as a subscript --> hFE = 50
Defines a separate section of the document.
The HTML &xxx; special characters are available. Click on the heading for more information.
This site also supports the markdown language CommonMark. This is intended to be a little easier to type than HTML, but be aware that some simple text sequences can have effects on formatting.
Briefly, the markdown language elements are:
- Bold: **text** is text
- Italic: *text* or _text_ is text
- Code/monospace: `text` is
- Links: [name](url) cause name to be a link to url
- Strikethrough: ~~text~~ is
- Blockquotes: > text is
- Bullets: start your lines with * or -
- Numbered lists: start your lines with 1., 2., etc.
- Headers: start your line with # for H1, ## for H2, etc. Must have a space between # and the start of your text.
- Horizontal line: --- on a line on its own.
- footnotes: use [^1], [^2], etc., inline, and add [^1]: words to the bottom of your post for automatic formatting and linking.