Foundation Statement

Hi, I am Ishibashi Hideto, a founder of the Japanese Markdown User Group.

I started the Japanese Markdown User Group to push Japanese Markdown forward.

This community is for

I want this community to be beneficial to you.

By the way, let me explain “why Markdown is so important”.

Nowadays, Open Government and Open Data movements are growing globally. They are making effort to reveal, share and use structured data from governments.

On the other hands, improving accessibility of documents from governments is also important.

Accessibility is the intrinsic value of the Web. Accessibility is a wider concept than Open Data. Each concept is for realizing Open Government. But I cannot see as much progress in improving document accessibility as improving open data. This gap is on my mind.

Governments in Japan, from local to state’s, often disclose government information, still spoiling accessibility. For example, a PDF file scanned from paper, originally made with word processors. I want to say something on ineffective workflow, but the more important issue here is that accessibility of information is lost.

If the same document is published in digital text format, the document is accessible for blind people. It is indexsable and searchable by search engines. You can access to information with various methods when accessibility has provided enough. Document accessibility is lost by converting to images. That is, it is hard for blind people to listen its content with text-to-speech software. Search engines also cannot index and make it searchable.

Document accessibility is important. I call this Open Document movement, according to Open Data. For Open Document purpose, I will push Markdown forward.

Why Markdown? Its syntax is based on email conventions. People can read and write Markdown text easily. In other words, Markdown source code is readable and writable enough. So I would say Markdown is a realistic solution for Open Document.

This is why I commit to Markdown. By the way, community members, feel free to talk on every topic, from daily usage to big issues.

If you are interested in, please join us.

Ishibashi Hideto

September 3, 2013