Markdown is a lightweight markup language for creating formatted text using a plain-text
John Gruber and Aaron Swartz created Markdown in 2004 as a markup language that is appealing to
human readers in its source code form.
Markdown is widely used in blogging, instant messaging, online forums, collaborative
software, documentation pages, and readme files.
The initial description of Markdown contained ambiguities and raised unanswered questions. To
correct these problems, later implementations introduced subtle differences from the original
version as well as syntax extensions.
Using Markdown is different than using a WYSIWYG editor. In an application like Microsoft Word,
you click buttons to format words and phrases, and the changes are visible immediately. Markdown
isnt like that. When you create a Markdown-formatted file, you add Markdown syntax to the text
to indicate which words and phrases should look different.
For example, to denote a heading, you add a number sign before it (e.g., # Heading One). Or to
make a phrase bold, you add two asterisks before and after it (e.g., **this text is bold**). It
may take a while to get used to seeing Markdown syntax in your text, especially if youre
accustomed to WYSIWYG applications. The screenshot below shows a Markdown file displayed in the
Visual Studio Code text editor.