• Is it? Really? Easier for non-technical users than Markdown?

    Most simple markup languages (djot, markdown, asciidoc, textile, etc.) are based on 7-bit ASCII markup that people have been using in email and SMS for decades. They’re compact and straightforward. BBCode is a bastardization (I use that in its technical sense more than as a pejorative) of HTML; it’s verbose and unintuitive.

    Give a non-technical person with no other information a keyboard and a plain text field and ask them to emphasize a word in some text. I’ll bet the first thing they do is all caps. If you ask them to do it without caps, I bet you’ll get something like surrounding the text in asterisks or hashmarks, but regardless, what you won’t get is bracket-B-bracket followed by a closing tag.

    BBCode is just straight-up HTML for people allergic to pointy characters. That’s hardly non-technical.

    • Александр
      8 months ago

      @sxan I have different opinion on this but I am not UX specialist.

      Surely to just highlight something it is easier to use underscore or similar characters but when you want to have variety of formatting styles in my opinon text tags are easier to remember and use. Yes, more to type but BBCode-enabled solutions usually provide some sort of assist.

      Also Markdown tends to conflict with user input more often which is confusing.

      • I think it comes down to: when we’re dealing with truly non-technical users, we hope the clients have some sort of UI to insert codes; very non-tech users aren’t going to be very handy with any markup, and the best thing for them is some sort of WYSIWYG interface, or at very least an “insert markup buttons” feature.

        For the people writing markup by hand, IMO markup that minimally interferes with reading when it is unline (unrendered) is best. HTML, BBCode, and other heavy markup gets in the way more than (e.g.) djot, asciidoc, markdown, and other languages that descend from intuitively evolved markup from 70’s email systems.

        Vivat diversitas.