BlueCloth / Markdown

I just found out about BlueCloth, which is a Ruby implementation of Markdown. Markdown allows you to transform specially formatted plain-text documents into HTML. What's cool is it's a nice, human-readable format. Here's some sample text from BlueCloth page:

The Ant-Sugar Tales
===================

By Candice Yellowflower  

The _Ant-Sugar Tales_ is a collection of short stories told from the
perspective of a fine young lady from [Venice][1], who has some run-ins
with a few [inquisitive insects][2]. Each tale presents a moral quandry,
which the ants are quick to solve with their antly wisdom and
know-how. Some of the moral lessons presented are:

* Laundry: How not to get caught in soiled knickers.
* Used Ticket Stubs and Their Impact on the Universe
* I'm Keeping a Birdhouse in my Attic


Use of Metaphor
---------------
The author's splended use of metaphor can be attributed to her growing
up in a art-supply store. Her characters are richly outlined, but her
unusual descriptions can sometimes be a bit jarring in places, such as
her description of the old caretaker that lives inside a hollow tree in
her yard:

> His skin was smooth like Magnani Pescia 100% acid-free cold pressed
> 22x30" Soft White Paper, with fine hair like the bristles of a Habico
> Lasur Superb Oil Glazing Brush Size 10.


  [1]: http://www.azureva.com/gb/italie/mags/grand-canal.php3
       (Venice: The Grand Canal)
  [2]: http://www.fortunecity.com/emachines/e11/86/tourist4d.html

And that gets transformed into the following:

The Ant-Sugar Tales

By Candice Yellowflower

The Ant-Sugar Tales is a collection of short stories told from the perspective of a fine young lady from Venice, who has some run-ins with a few inquisitive insects. Each tale presents a moral quandry, which the ants are quick to solve with their antly wisdom and know-how. Some of the moral lessons presented are:

  • Laundry: How not to get caught in soiled knickers.
  • Used Ticket Stubs and Their Impact on the Universe
  • I'm Keeping a Birdhouse in my Attic

Use of Metaphor

The author's splended use of metaphor can be attributed to her growing up in a art-supply store. Her characters are richly outlined, but her unusual descriptions can sometimes be a bit jarring in places, such as her description of the old caretaker that lives inside a hollow tree in her yard:

His skin was smooth like Magnani Pescia 100% acid-free cold pressed 22x30" Soft White Paper, with fine hair like the bristles of a Habico Lasur Superb Oil Glazing Brush Size 10.

Cool stuff.