Suggestions and questions on using MD note as a beginner

Just experiment a bit to use md for note-taking in DT3.

S(1) It would be wonderful if the contextual menu can show basic formatting functions when a piece of text is selected in the md document. It’ll save a lot of time from typing the # and * symbols. Multiple simple scripts can do the job but standard menu-items in contextual menu will be much nicer.

-- bold the select text
set a to selected text of think window 1
set selected text of think window 1 to "**" & a & "**"

-- Set heading
set a to selected text of think window 1
set selected text of think window 1 to "### " & a 

S(2) It would be wonderful if the conversion from rtf/rtfd to md can retain the link and create an asset folder in place for the image(!).

Q(3) I see that most of the css style sheet offered on the web always come with a folder. For adding the style to libary/application support/DEVONthink 3/StyleSheets/, do I need to move the entire folder there or just the css file?

Q(4) If we want to a css style sheet but the style sheet doesn’t have a code fence for syntax highlight. Is there a way to add syntax highlight for coding in the same css?


A future release will probably improve the Editing bar instead as that’s easier to use than the contextual menu.

This is also planned for upcoming releases.

  1. Just the stylesheet should be fine.
  2. Snippets

PS: Don’t look at the typing of the control characters as burdensome. It’s really no slower than typing anything else.

(1) Perhaps it’s because I’m at experimental stage, so I find typing the symbols is kind of disrupting my thought process. And I am not a touch typist… You are right that I might be getting used to it.
(2) The formatting function is useful for post-processing. For example, I paste a piece of info into a note, add my comment, then highlight the areas that are meaningful to me.

This is very useful!

I’m so used to it now, I often accidentally type the control characters in non-Markdown documents :stuck_out_tongue:

Something like this?

(Every time I sit down at a computer without Keyboard Maestro I cry a little…

1 Like

Yeah! I don’t use the very powerful KM, but BTT can achieve the similar results for more simple tasks like this one. However, I think it’s just easier to use DT’s functions if those functions are available.

I can’t stop puzzling, why can’t some/all of the md apps reverse the priority of raw-preview interface: let the user to use the preview interface do all the WYSISYG formatting and linking, and let the backend to handle the css styling, linking syntax, and adding the symbols, etc. (Sorry, perhaps Typora is exactly doing that)

why can’t some/all of the md apps reverse the priority of raw-preview interface:

How about because that’s not everyone’s preference?
I personally don’t like it, especially the hybrid approach that shows the control characters and the styling.

Also, I would offer my opinion that you learn absolutely nothing from an application like that. You’re not learning Markdown and you’re not writing in Markdown in an app like Typora. You are merely typing and styling, no different that using another format. The application is creating Markdown. I think if you want to actually learn Markdown, learn Markdown. Just my opinion :slight_smile:

Also Markdown is incredibly simple to learn and has the benefit of being very customizable with CSS.


After a second thought, I think I missed an important point and you are right: portability is not just about the style and file format. By using the raw data interface, the way to type text and formatting are also portable regardless of the editors.

PS: That is no knock on those editors and people who want to use them. Different strokes…


Removing the fingers from the keyboard to select ## from a popup is slower than just typing ##.

Very helpful post.

I briefly tested a very popular outliner app, and it would drive my crazy how every time I brought the focus to a bullet, it would go from rendered to source just for that bullet. Since text is a bit longer on source mode, it would keep jumping back and forth. Argh… Not for me, I am afraid.

Sounds dreadful indeed! :flushed::blush: